Mr. Magazine's M.O.: Joint Effort
In the publishing world you have to stay on top of the latest trends. (Word number one: trends.) And you also need to be as contemporary and innovative as possible. (Words two and three: contemporary and innovative.) Those three words are the only constant in a sea of change.
For some inexplicable reason, the powers-that-be in some publishers' offices think that in order to be hip—that is, synonymous with the word-trio trends (trendy), contemporary and innovative—you must accentuate the digital before you mention the print. Think of the many hip-sounding initiatives starting with "digital first." Or, as has happened on more than one occasion, you may decide to do away with print altogether.
Many of you know that I am not among the followers of that religion. Doing "hip replacement" surgery on your product by taking away the print version and putting in a new digital one is not the answer. Modifying your "hipness" by conjoining the two, on the other hand, is.
With that last statement fermenting in your mind, let me elaborate. Print publishing still brings in the majority of the publishing industry's revenue. Let me repeat that: print publishing still brings in the majority of the publishing industry's revenue. Not digital, in any platform. David Carey, president of Hearst Magazines, recently announced that the total digital revenues from Hearst's magazines is a mere 3 percent. That being said, digital has a place in the business. And that place is on the other hip. The left hip, and the first, will always be print (and yes, I am one of those folks who is willing to say ALWAYS and not just in the foreseeable future). The right hip, the other balance point on today's two-legged creation, is digital.
Combining the two, without replacing either, is the business model of today's magazine. Our audience-of-one demands and deserves it. Out of sight is proving continuously out of mind.