Saturday, August 28, 2004

The Joys of Custom Publishing

Catching up on my reading, I caught a story on H&M putting out a custom-published magazine that will be distributed to 20 countries in five languages.

Great idea, although I am looking for the original press release. The article in Fashion Weekly Daily notes that the publication will be bi-yearly. Um, that means every-other-year, which would be a dumb custom magazine strategy. My guess is that the reporter fell into the bi-mistake, not realizing it means every other, not twice.

I'm a very, very big fan of custom publishing, but it amazes me how few companies grasp the idea. I currently work with a marketing firm, and during a brainstorm session I noted that a client would be better served by taking some of its advertising budget to create a custom published magazine. Recently P&G did the exact same thing in the UK - cut advertising, and put the money into a new magazine called Mustard, which is all P&G product oriented.

It's just something that PR people need to keep in mind. With Jack O'Dwyer's recent piece on marketing communications growth at the expense of PR, we need to think like marketing people (yes, like the old Dilbert joke, just get drunk), and be able to provide expanded services to clients. Like, custom publishing - if you are thinking about custom-publishing, I suggest McMurry in Phoenix. They have a total turnkey solution - articles and ad-sales - and the editor-in-chief of their magazine division is an editor that I used to work with, whom I respect quite a bit.
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