Corner Office:: Say Media CEO Matt Sanchez on Building A Robust Digital Infrastructure
And what we find is that people just engage differently with that sort of content. They spend more time with it, and they share it with their friends more. And this is true in television as well -- it's why The Daily Show does so well, it's why Fox News does so well -- people become tribal around it. So you either love it or you hate it, which means the core audiences are incredibly passionate and engaged.
Why do you think community is an important part of digital publishing?
I think that what ends up being most important about digital magazines is that they're two-way. You have nearly immediate feedback from your readers about what you've written. And you sense that in some small way, you have ownership in the brand as a reader, because [with digital], there's a way to get that conversation going between editors and the readers. And I think that changes all the rules.
How do Say Media publications ensure a strong point of view?
Well, one of the things you'll see in our publications is that we try to bring the voices of the editors through, and make them almost a cast of characters on the site. And I guess I would say that if you find that difficult as a publication, then you're probably not getting there. If you can't authentically say what you have to say -- and use personal pronouns, and ask people to talk back, and get into the comments and react to what people say -- then you're probably not pulling it off.
As we've built these editorial teams, we've definitely seen people who were very uncomfortable with using their voice, or putting themselves out there in that way. And you can feel that in the writing, which just ends up being less interesting in some cases.
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Dan Eldridge is a journalist and guidebook author based in Philadelphia's historic Old City district, where he and his partner own and operate Kaya Aerial Yoga, the city's only aerial yoga studio. A longtime cultural reporter, Eldridge also writes about small business and entrepreneurship, travel, and the publishing industry. Follow him on Twitter at @YoungPioneers.