February 2008 Issue


6 Tips for Redesigning Your Magazine’s Web Site

Tips from Bryant Rousseau, editorial director, digital media, McGraw-Hill Construction 1. Any site that’s not at a 1,000-pixel-wide layout is way behind the times. Your readers are ready for it, if you’re still holding back. 2. Make sure—whether it’s on the editorial side or from your art department—that you have someone with great design and information-architecture sense. 3. Find good third-party partners who can help you with your community tools, video or blog-syndication service. There are a lot of good companies out there with solutions that can help your site. 4. Realize that this is the future and that you need to

8 Pre-call Steps to Successful Integrated Media Sales

Not long ago, I counseled a young salesperson who was preparing for one of his first sales calls. With evident confidence, he rattled off to me all the salient points of his media’s editorial strengths, pricing and competitive benefits. Then I threw him. I asked what he thought of his prospect’s new product line. His blank look showed that he hadn’t done his homework. And he’s not the only one. Given the complexities of multimedia sales today, many salespeople become so caught up in learning the nuances of their own media products, they neglect to learn even the basics about their clients. That’s a

Bonnier Corp. Titles Sign On to ABC’s Rapid Report

Bonnier Corp. announced this week that Parenting, Popular Science, Field & Stream and Outdoor Life will be joining the Audit Bureau of Circulations’ (ABC) Rapid Report system beginning with their first issues of 2008. Rapid Report allows publishers to voluntarily report their top-line circulation data on an issue-by-issue basis within weeks of the on-sale or non-paid distribution date, arming advertisers and ad agencies with timely access to up-to-date circulation data. “In this ever-changing media landscape, it is imperative for magazines to respond to the industry’s need for more frequent reporting of circulation data,” says Terry Snow, Bonnier’s CEO. “By committing our largest-circulation titles to

BoSacks: Why Do Good Magazines Die?

Chuck Townsend, president and CEO of Condé Nast Publications, said in a statement, “Our investment in House & Garden throughout the years has been substantial, and we no longer believe it is a viable business investment for the company.” Well, that is surely his call to make, but the public death by hanging of an old and cherished lady of publishing with a fan base of almost a million paid copies a month sets the stage for a review of what constitutes “success” in the magazine world, and, I think, makes a case for the impending doom of megalithic publishing empires. House & Garden

Exclusive Q&A With Quebecor World Magazine Division President Doron Grosman

Quebecor World’s (QW) recent filing for bankruptcy protection has been well documented throughout both the mainstream and b-to-b media. Publishing Executive Inbox spoke with the company’s president of its magazine division Doron Grosman about the effects of the reorganization on its magazine customers, how the company finds itself in its current state, and the long-term prognosis of Quebecor World. INBOX: How, if at all, are QW’s magazine customers being affected by this situation and might QW’s magazine business take a new shape going forward? DORON GROSMAN: QW Magazine customers, as well as those in our other divisions, are unaffected by the reorganization. Our plants

Fast Stats

Record-Setting 2007 for M&A Deals Media and information merger-and-acquisition transactions reached record highs of 838 deals totaling nearly $110 Billion in value in 2007, an increase of 32% and 79% respectively, over 2006. Source: The Jordan, Edmiston Group Inc. 2007 Ad Pages Flat, Revenue Slightly Up, Among Consumer Mags Consumer magazine ad pages were largely flat for both the fourth quarter and the year in 2007, while total ad revenue for the year increased 6.1% compared to 2006. Nine of the 12 categories tracked showed increases in ad dollars over 2006 figures, and seven of the 12 accounted for more ad pages than in

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

How to Get Faster Responses to Requests for Quotes

In today’s marketplace—where publishers’ portfolios are more varied, projects are more complex and deadlines are ever-tighter—one of the biggest challenges facing production professionals is getting fast, accurate responses to requests for quotes (RFQs), often needed “yesterday” from sales reps. Here, top production managers from Haymarket Media and Hachette Filipacchi take you inside their respective production departments and share their strategies to help you streamline your RFQ process, and produce quick, comprehensive results. Featuring: Elizabeth Graham Title: Head of Production Company: Haymarket Media Inc. I manage a department of production staff that produces 21 titles. We … are asked for quotes

Industry Executives’ Appointments, Promotions, Transfers and More

• Michael Friedson has been promoted to editor-in-chief of Time Out New York, following the departure of Brian Farnham. • Kirk McDonald has been named chief revenue officer of Time Inc.’s Fortune Money Group. • Bonnier Corp. has named Howard Roth its vice president of eMedia. • Stephanie Mehta has been appointed to the newly created position of global editor of Fortune. • Theresa O’Rourke has been appointed executive editor of Every Day with Rachael Ray. • Reader’s Digest has named Steven Schwartz general manager of RD.com. • Lebhar-Friedman has named Tom Larranaga publisher of Nation’s

Microsoft Offers $44.6 Billion in Bid to Acquire Yahoo

Microsoft Corp. made morning headlines with a $44.6 billion offer in cash and stock to buy beleaguered Internet icon Yahoo today. “We have great respect for Yahoo, and together we can offer an increasingly exciting set of solutions for consumers, publishers and advertisers while becoming better positioned to compete in the online services market,” says Steve Ballmer, Microsoft’s CEO. “We believe our combination will deliver superior value to our respective shareholders and better choice and innovation to our customers and industry partners.” The offer of $31 per share helped lift Yahoo’s morning share price nearly 50 percent, and represents a 62-percent premium above

Online Communities: Open for Discussion

Though many magazine publishers now have more than a decade of Web experimentation under their belts, few profess to having found the perfect Web model—and, by and large, view their Web sites as perpetual works in progress. Different models appear to work for different publishers, often determined by genre and reader demographics. But one common theme seems to be top of mind as publishers set out to enhance their sites: how to build online communities. Hundreds of tools are available—from ASP to install-based solutions, from freeware to licensed tools. Forums and chat, blogs and comments, and polls and surveys have enabled

SPECIAL REPORT: Your Guide to the 2008 Media ‘Brandscape’

Most people don’t use the phrase “sea change” lightly, but that’s exactly what comes to Gordon Hughes’ mind when he describes an important, recent shift in the business-to- business sector. The CEO of industry association American Business Media (ABM) is referring to the significance of 2006 numbers that showed that revenue from events surpassed that of magazines for the first time ever. While rooted in the recent economic downturn of the early 2000s, which hit print media harder than trade shows, the ascendancy of events is indicative of much larger trends in the publishing world. “It’s really not primarily about magazines any

The ROI Experts

Needham, Mass.-based TechTarget bills itself as “The IT Media ROI Experts,” and return on investment is certainly what both IT professionals and vendors are looking for from products featured online. With potentially millions of dollars at stake in a major hardware purchase, companies seek the highest-quality information targeted to their specific needs and business strategies. TechTarget has built its reputation—and ever-expanding share of the media market for IT research and peer support—on providing precisely that. Founded in September 1999, the company has grown to 474 employees, and it generated revenues of $79 million in 2006. With the acquisition last June of TechnologyGuide.com Inc. and

Web Sitings: The Architecture Behind a Site Redesign

Owned and operated by The McGraw-Hill Cos., Architectural-Record.com supplements the monthly business-to-business magazine Architectural Record with expanded multimedia stories, in-depth interviews, daily news updates and a wealth of other offerings for the architectural community—readers and users whose job it is to be design-savvy. So when tasked with redesigning the site about a year ago, one can understand the trepidation felt by Susannah Shepherd, design director, digital media, McGraw-Hill Construction (MHC). Shepherd, who directs the design of all MHC sites, says redesigning a site for a community of architects was particularly daunting. “It definitely is intimidating because architectural firms’ [own Web] sites are very beautiful