Compelling Magazine App Comes From Unlikely Source
Many of the most innovative digital publishing products are coming from companies that are producing their own branded apps. Take a look at the interactive apps from many of the auto manufacturers, or the app put out by the Marines as examples. Another such digital magazine that is raising the bar a little more was recently put out by Red Bull.
This retail company, which is best known for its line of energy drinks, also has an in-house media company and has been putting out cutting edge products for a while. One of their staples is a monthly sports magazine, which they have produced in nine nations to date. The latest recently rolled out with the U.S. edition of The Red Bulletin.
This magazine is visually very appealing and a surprisingly strong effort from a nontraditional media company. The two most important components of a strong digital magazine on the iPad are quality video and high impact photography. The Red Bulletin excels in both.
The Red Bulletin is especially strong in its use of video because of their creative transitions and effects used to introduce them. Their rapid editing and use of music create an energizing tone that matches their products and the athletes that represent them.
Their photography is also great and looks amazing on the iPad. Red Bull definitely didn't cut corners on these two elements of their publication as the final product shows.
There are a few things The Red Bulletin can do differently. While the file size is surpassingly manageable given the large amount of video, the magazine relies too much on video. It's like the feeling we get when we have a growing stack of reading material and start to feel obliged to read it instead of flipping through for enjoyment.
Also, there are a few features that have too many stacked pages that are a bit too text heavy. Use of scrolling text boxes and animated slideshows would help compact the issue in a few places.
The Red Bulletin is a quality publication but will also fight the stigma of being a brand extension and therefore the objectiveness of its content will always be questioned, fair or not. However, from a production perspective, The Red Bulletin can't be questioned.
Ron Matejko is the President of Phoenix, Ariz.-based MVP Media, an award-winning digital publishing company. Matejko has 16 years of publishing experience in print, Web and mobile and has worked on the staff of two award-winning publications.
MVP Media publishes MVP Magazine, the first interactive sports publication, which won a Bronze 2010 Digital Magazine Award for Best Sports Magazine, besting entrants from 26 countries around the world, and was a finalist for Designer of the Year. MVP Media will launch its own magazines on the iPad in 2011.
MVP Media also helps existing publishers convert their print products into dynamic publications for the web and tablets. Visit the MVP Magazine website at www.mvptoday.com. Contact Ron by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or connect with him on LinkedIn or on Twitter @mvp_media.