Some Multiplatform Publishers Ceasing Print, While Another Expands to Print

Multiplatform publishers Condé Nast and Bloomberg are ending some print titles; A popular indie returns to print

The revolution in digital publishing has led to many multiplatform publishers rethinking their content strategies. This had led to a many publishers turning their focus primarily to digital while letting some print titles go the wayside.

The first multiplatform publisher we have to report on today is Condé Nast. According to WWD, Condé Nast is closing Self magazine in print.

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“The publisher confirmed the news and said it would continue operating, and that executive digital director Carolyn Klystra would be named editor in chief. The closure entails roughly 20 job cuts, including the termination of Self editor in chief Joyce Chang, who was brought on in 2014 to succeed the ousted Lucy Danziger.”

This decision to end print isn’t coming with major surprise. The company has put in effort to make streamlined changes, but sometimes the success of print becomes stagnant, especially when digital becomes more of a focus.

The article shares a portrait of this. “After a few redesigns and a reduction in frequency from 12 to 10, Self was unable to move the needle much in terms of sales. According to the Alliance for Audited Media, the magazine’s total paid and verified circulation hovered around just under 1.5 million with single-copy sales around 44,000 in the first half of 2016. Before Chang joined Self, circulation in 2014 was just more than 1.5 million with total-single copy sales reaching 148,055.”

We’re seeing a similar scene develop within Bloomberg, too. According to Folio, “Bloomberg Pursuits is folding its print product. The luxury magazine, which is distributed exclusively to Bloomberg Terminal subscribers, will cease print publication after its current December issue.”

Although Bloomberg Pursuits is ceasing its print life, the information will live on through other media, the article goes on to discuss. “The digital edition will live on, and online content will remain free to all audiences. In addition, the October-launched show “Bloomberg Pursuits” will continue to air on Bloomberg TV, and luxury reports will continue on Bloomberg Radio. No personnel changes are expected at this time.”

This marks the largest change at Bloomberg in months, and the digital-first strategy is new in itself for the publisher. “While Pursuits will continue to focus on luxury coverage, a consumer and digital-first strategy is a major shift for the brand.”

Print doesn’t always disappear; Sometimes print publications reappear

Although we see print titles come to an end for major multiplatform publishers — Bloomberg Pursuits and Self being the titles this time around — we also see some publishers grow, expand, or reappear in the world of print.

Sometimes this is due to significant growth in the digital realm. Other times it’s due to popularity of niche audiences. This is what we’re seeing with the announcement that Paste magazine is returning to print.

In an article from AdWeek, Paste’s founder discusses the upcoming print return. “We’ve enjoyed the freedom of publishing digital content and will continue to add more categories to the website,” said Paste founder and editor in chief Josh Jackson. “But this new magazine is a truly unique and exciting opportunity to share something special with our readers. Our goal has always been to surprise and delight our audience, and we’re convinced this will do both.”

The article continues, “Paste Quarterly will retail for $20, with a yearly subscription going for $70. The Paste website in November welcomed around seven million unique visitors.”

It’s always exciting to see digital publishers expand to print, or in this case, reappear as a print publication.


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