2007: The Online Video Era?
“This is an interesting model in that the content is also our sponsorship,” he says. “Companies pay us to be interviewed for this, but the concept won’t work for every market.”
Hence Penton’s indirect-revenue-producing sites, EEPN.com/video and all other electronic-related publications. These sites make use of YouTube videos in sort of a social way, allowing readers and vendors to submit their own electronic engineering video to editors for possible broadcast. One such video is “Teardown of Sony PlayStation 3” submitted by Semiconductor Insights, in which a PlayStation 3 console is deconstructed to “see what makes it tick.”
Shanfelt adds that all of Penton’s magazine sites also feature trade show and conference coverage through a more “semi-amateur approach for now.”
Richard J. Koreto, editor-in-chief, Wealth Manager and Advising Boomers magazines, who won a gold American Society of Business Publication Editors award for best Web community while at another publication a few years ago, suggests informative and entertaining content as a winning combination—maybe with a columnist broadcasting opinions on a weekly basis.
“I think we’ll also see videos serving as instructional tutorials for installing software, similar to VHS tapes that accompanied instructions for this purpose. You could pause, rewind, go back,” he says. “Because I cover a lot of how-to copy for completing taxation forms, it would be great to have a video featuring Jane Doe, the CPA, who walks viewers through their 1099s.
“The point is: are you getting out of video what you couldn’t get from the text? Otherwise, why bother?” adds Koreto.
Ads and Delivery
Even with the most creative ideas, it all comes down to attracting advertisers, which Lauf concedes is a challenge. “I mean, we’re still figuring it out,” he says. “Print is a known entity with a definitive quantity. We know that the printed page is not enough for our audience, but the lay of the land is still not clear. So, we take a consultative approach and persuade advertisers to trust us.”