11 Tips to Successfully Balance a Print and Digital Portfolio
8. Create templates.
Reinventing the wheel every time you want to create, for example, an online forum, new video or e-newsletter can be time-consuming and costly. Take the time to develop templates that will minimize the amount of time spent to create a new product, while maximizing the professional look of the finished product. “We do a lot of voice-over work instead of putting an editor on camera,” says Mathies. “It’s very reproducible day after day because we know the format we are presenting it in.” Setting up ready-made formats for e-newsletters, blogs, streaming video and other interactive products also enhances quality through consistency.
9. Capture e-mail addresses.
“The e-mail list is the most powerful and most responsive form of online marketing,” says Ruddy. “So publishers should use their Web sites and their magazines to build their e-mail lists, because it’s a way of cross-selling people into the magazine, and it’s a great menu for advertisers.” By offering free reports or gifts in exchange for a reader’s e-mail and contact information, publishers can build a potent channel for ongoing dialogue and relationship-building with their readers. “Consider the Web as an aggregator of readers and the e-mail as a way of capturing those people in a database. Every month you can e-mail all of your followers and remind them to come back to your site,” says Ruddy. “And then the magazine is the thing you upsell to people.”
10. Grow your database.
As a company’s e-mail list grows, their database becomes more and more valuable. Once these e-mails are captured, publishers should focus on selling a demographic, an audience to advertisers. “That’s why it’s important that publishers get people to give up as much information about themselves as they can,” says Ruddy. “If an advertiser wants to sell, say a pharmaceutical, they can also cross-sell into the Web and the e-mail list.”
11. Concentrate on generating the right revenues.
Selling interactive media can be challenging, to say the least. So sell your traditional ad space first and then concentrate on selling new media, Mathies advises. “Sell out every stitch of available run-of-site inventory on your site, then worry about selling your video or podcasts,” he says. “I think you water down the product by going to market with too many things, especially with the newer things that might not have the inventory quite yet.” Commit to the fact that you have a good product that people want to advertise on and have your sales force keep things simple. “We didn’t go out and create a bunch of sales packages and complicated sponsorships,” says Mathies. “We tell our story and talk about our product. It’s amazing what that does to push the ball in terms of selling your core offerings that are already established.”
Cynthia Kincaid is a freelance journalist in Portland, Oregon. She writes about publishing, health care and business. Contact her at Cynthia@KincaidMedical.com.