Duncan Edwards

Ellen Harvey is a freelance writer and editor who covers the latest technologies and strategies reshaping the publishing landscape. She previously served as the Senior Editor at Publishing Executive and Book Business.

Linda Ruth, as president of PSCS Consulting (www.PSCSConsulting.com), offers communication companies worldwide the keys to magazine launches, search engine optimization and audience development online and at retail. She is a pioneer in the fields of Online Audience Optimization (OAO) and gamification for content publishers. Her books, "Internet Marketing for Magazine Publishers" ; "How to Market your Newsstand Magazine"; and "Secrets of SEO for Publishers" can be found on Amazon. Find her online at Google PlusMagazine Dojo, LinkedIn, and Twitter @Linda_Ruth.

The launch of online-only, local language brands in several new markets is part of a drive to extend Hearst's Cosmopolitan brand into markets where it does not already have a print presence.

Top on the initial target list are the Nordics and Africa. Cobus Heyl spoke to Duncan Edwards, president and CEO of Hearst Magazines International, about their plans.

Cosmopolitan will launch local language sites for Sweden, Denmark and Norway in the first quarter in 2015.

Duncan Edwards may run an enviable portfolio of magazines, including Cosmopolitan, Elle, Esquire and Harper's Bazaar, but he admits an ingrained old-school mindset has cost the publisher the digital initiative.

Faced with competition from the BuzzFeed generation of digital upstarts, Edwards, chief executive of Hearst International, delivered an edict to his magazine editors: "From months to moments".

"With the advent of mobile, smartphones and tablets, consumer expectations have changed," he says. "Some content-driven pure plays were fast to realise that was an opportunity - examples everyone uses are BuzzFeed and [fashion and beauty site] Refinery29.

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