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Print Magazines Are Not Zombies

GeeklogPrint Magazines are not Zombies

The 'dark side' seems to be a popular subject these days with vampires, demons, and zombies. But if everyone who proclaimed the death of the print magazine years ago has today been transformed into fictional screen writers. Over the past two years there have been more magazine launches than closures. Some high profile title closures tend to capture the lime light and fuel the dooms sayers. However, reality is there are a lot of print magazine zombies out there being very successful and now even multiplying.

Remember the original sit down pizza parlors? The carry our pizza craze was going to put them out of business. Then the delivery craze was going to put them out of business. Then the take and bake and grocery stores were going to put them out of business. Well today there are more sit down pizza parlors then ever. People are still enjoying their pasta favorites in a variety of ways - all successfully and expanding the overall market.

Theres a lot of positive talk about magazines these days interestingly, its coming from the digital developers. Print magazines, are everything online publishers want they stand for something with their audiences, they have established rates based on a long tradition of buying and selling. The publisher can artificially limit supply by cutting pages. The print magazine-reading experience is different. Magazines may be losing circulation as some readers slowly shift online, but a printed magazine is still the ultimate engagement vehicle. People are more focused when reading print than when listening to radio or watching TV.

Meanwhile, online publishing is heading for trouble. Desktop ad spending is flat and falling as consumers shift to apps and mobile devices. Even Yahoo is rolling out new premium products for 'digital' magazines. There are only so many advertisers who will pay a premium for 'online' magazines given the reading experience is still different from prints. Lately, advertisers are shifting spending out of display and into video and programmatic advertising.

Unless you have a print magazine, and built that content brand - It will be increasingly hard to find a broad active niche to successfully launch and build an on-line magazine version only. The problems going to be, advertisers are going to be shifting to programmatic, apps, and video.... or the ever newest craze to delivery the entertainment, information and focussed content to capture a market.

Yes- technology is changing and before the apocalypse comes for the printed magazine, it comes back to making a great product with great content - that people understand how to engage in.

I'll have a Large Pepperoni pizza and sit down down with my Car and Driver please.



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