The pursuit of circulation and ad revenue will push magazine publishers to embrace a number of digital publishing trends in 2017, per predictions in a Publishing Executive magazine article by Ron Matejko, president of digital publisher MVP Media. We thought our consumer and business publication clients would be interested in a few of those trends.
Subscription Drives Go Digital
While insert cards and direct mail remain sturdy tools for circulation marketing, Matejko foresees increased use of digital tools in audience development, and he cites the example of Dallas-based D Magazine, which is leveraging its combined database with outreach via automated and personalized e-mail campaigns and targeted social media advertising to audiences that look like their current print subscriber base. The result has been more new and renewed subscriptions for the print product, in fact almost a 100% increase in subscriptions generated monthly through digital efforts. The power of postal combined with social/e-mail database marketing has certainly given legs to AccuList USA’s Digital2Direct marketing program.
Mobile Apps Boost Brand & Revenue
Also watch for increased use of mobile magazine apps that enhance the reader experience, predicts Matejko. Consider the success story of Cities West Publishing in Arizona, which expanded its app offerings last year with interactive versions of two monthly print publications, as well as apps to supplement multimedia campaigns for two special issues. For example, an app for Apple and Android mobile devices reformatted the more than 1,200 listings of design experts, shops, and services showcased in Phoenix Home & Garden magazine’s Top Design Sources issue, followed by a similar app for Phoenix magazine’s Travel Guide issue. The benefits: branding, extended shelf life beyond the newsstand, and revenue via multi-platform value-added for print ad partners.
Tech Innovations Could Be Transformative
Tech innovators are courting publishers with tools that could make a big difference to digital success, according to Matejko. He cites innovations such as Advontemedia’s software that caters to mobile readers’ preference for scrolling vertically instead of horizontally, or Woodwing’s Inception digital content production tool that enables publishers to create a constantly updated app, with responsive design for all devices.
Publishers in a Tug of War With Platforms
Given those digital trends, it’s no surprise that publishers are distributing content across audience-rich platforms such as Facebook and Google. They are betting that targeted content on digital platforms will drive traffic back to their own sites—boosting readership, content value, and ad revenue. But the formula for monetizing multi-platform efforts has proved challenging, according to Patricia Orsini, eMarketer analyst and author of the new report, Media’s Digital Challenge: Publisher Strategies for Monetizing Content Across Platforms. Instead of the content on platforms scaling up audience for most publishers, “readers spent more time with those platforms, and therefore boosted revenue to those platforms,” Orsini found.
For more on the digital publishing trend predictions from the Publishing Executive article, go to http://www.pubexec.com/post/4-digital-publishing-trends-watch-2017/