Fueling the ‘Fire of Quick Action’
This is our first issue of the new year, and while joyous well-wishings of “happy New Year!” have likely (or hopefully!) abounded in our personal circles for the past month, it is more likely that professional thoughts in the publishing world were more along the lines of wishes for a “not-unhappy New Year.” As an industry, we’ve got our challenges cut out for us this year, that’s for sure. Many of us are feeling the impacts of the postal rate increases, financing woes and “the great, big paper mess” (as someone I know called it) we’re in, and we’re all facing forecasts of a recession.
But still, the optimist inside me smiled when I read the “Special Report: Your Guide to the 2008 Media ‘Brandscape’” (page 20). All year long, numbers and opinions suggesting print’s decline are tossed about like hot potatoes (even though there are often equally compelling numbers showing increases), and as I’ve mentioned on several occasions, good magazines have seemingly closed their doors at every turn. But this article seems to finally give shape to something that has been meandering around in the back of my mind as a shadowless form for some time—the key is not whether your brand is in print or online. I know, I know—this isn’t exactly a revolutionary thought; it’s essentially saying “content is king” in any medium. Big deal, right? The difference in my mind is that more than the key being content, as others have said, the key is really your audience.
Look at TechTarget—launched in 1999 and growing incessantly by leaps and bounds. It started as an online company, and a handful of years ago it launched three print pubs, before recently folding one of them. TechTarget’s audience is based in technology. Is it that surprising that their audience is online? That it continues to migrate online? It would honestly seem a bit ironic if TechTarget’s target was print.