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20 Revenue-Generating Ideas

September 2011 By Noelle Skodzinski and Jim Sturdivant
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With print-dollars declining for many, and "digital dimes" not necessarily filling in gaps left by the recession and shifts in marketing spend, it is quickly becoming an era of reinvention. Magazine-centric brands are expanding on strong foundations established by print roots and coming up with new ideas to serve their audiences while generating new revenue streams.

Publishing Executive spoke with executives whose companies have launched new products and services to boost the bottom line while building on the relationships with their customers—both target audiences and advertising clients. Here are 20 of their successful revenue-generating ideas:

From Frank Anton …

CEO

Hanley Wood LLC

Hanley Wood develops magazines, websites, e-newsletters, exhibitions and conferences, and custom marketing and data services that support builders' information needs.

1. Host "mini" trade shows.

"Our biggest new revenue-generating idea is called ProShow'12. It is, in effect, a mobile, mini-trade show—our sponsors will have their building products moved around the country (to 20 to 25 major housing markets) in a truck caravan. The caravan will stop at large lumberyards (we're working with a major lumber yard chain), where the trucks will be unloaded, and exhibits, a stage, food-service areas and construction demo sites will be erected under a tent. Local contractors who attend will get to see new products, earn continuing-education credits, enter sweepstakes for products and a fully outfitted work truck, enjoy dinner and even get their trucks washed. (We'll have a mobile "car wash" set up as well.)

We expect every event to attract 300 contractors or so, maybe more in larger markets. Sponsors will pay a participation fee. We are budgeting to generate some $2 million in new revenue."

From Michela O'Connor Abrams …

President/Publisher

Dwell Media

Dwell Media's website explains that "Through a rapidly expanding offering of media platforms, Dwell inspires its community with smart and thoughtful ideas for modern living."


2. Sell your expertise as data/forecasting services.

"… We set out 10 years ago to function almost as a research company. ... One of the things we wanted to launch in 2010 was the Dwell Insights Group, which is … a forecasting company, a division of Dwell run by David Cobb, all for the purpose of backing this [research project], 'New Face of Affluence,' [an examination of the buying habits of affluent consumers], which we studied in March 2010 and restudied in March 2011 to look at brand affinity and admiration, and values and reasons to purchase and why. And now we actually have a whole consulting piece of that group with several Fortune 500 clients.

 
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