Should You Create Content and Hope to Get Paid for It? Or Aggregate Content? - Steve Blacker - MediaBizBloggers

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Cover image for  article: Should You Create Content and Hope to Get Paid for It? Or Aggregate Content? - Steve Blacker - MediaBizBloggers

Just ask GOOGLE!

While GOOGLE has become the 1,000 pound gorilla there is certainly still opportunity to look for creative ways to aggregate either your own content or that of others. Sports Illustrated has done a phenomenal job and created a major profit center in this area, i.e. former SWIMSUIT ISSUES, etc. Why don't more magazines such as Woman's Day aggregate all their recipe content from their very first issue?

Look out AMAZON! Wal-mart is significantly discounting upcoming major new books online by over 60%! For example, Sarah Palin's Going Rogue list price is $28.99 and Michael Crichton's Pirate Latitudes $27.99 are now being offered on Wal-mart's Web site for just $10. Coming next Wal-mart's "America's Reading List" featuring 200 bestsellers and offering them at a 50% discount. Big question; whether or not AMAZON responds? If they don't Amazon could lose significant market share as Wal-mart builds up its Web site traffic.

Is McKinsey giving Conde Nast the right advice? By eliminating two bridal books from the market place, Conde has made it much easier for The Knot magazine to increase its frequency from semiannual to four times a year. And Martha Stewart Weddings is launching a branding new national online luxury wedding expo as well as launching a Destinations Wedding issue. The bridal category is certainly not dead; Conde just seemed unable to profit from it. Bigger question; did anyone at McKinsey realize the damage the closing of Gourmet would do to the Conde Nast brand? Making page one of the New York Times was nothing compared to the anger and frustration the Gourmet closing caused many major Conde advertisers. Many in the media community were wondering how come McKinsey had Conde close Gourmet one of their most highly regarded brands but ignored the even worse problems that Wired, Details, Allure and Architectural Digest magazines are having. The closure of Wired would have been a ho hum by comparison.

The MPA's Innovation Summit disappointed most attendees. As usual the MPA stated the obvious "traditional print can be transferred to a digital format" but provided no answers on how to create a profit center from that. When the cable ad bureau was launched it had one highly effective media executive running it with virtually no other staff aside from Joe Ostrow's assistant. Joe knew how to establish his priorities and help cable gain a larger market share. Sad to say, the MPA has stood by and watched print dollars shift first to TV, then cable and now Digital. It's efforts while many have lacked a cohesiveness and ability to move client CMO's. Magazines are still highly impactful media brands. Perhaps the MPA should get George Lois or Milton Glaser to create an "I Love My Magazines" campaign. Kudos to Bonnier for investing in it's media brands! Their current editorial and production improvements with the recently acquired titles from Hachette are a major improvement.

Don't be surprised to see Saveur pick up market share from Bon Appetit. Saveur has become a combination of what Gourmet and Architectural Digest use to be in their prime. A print version of "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous".

The NASCAR and SCREENVISION partnership is a huge win for both companies. NASCAR gets content exposure in 15,000+ movie theatres to a key target group i.e. young adult movie goers; while SCREENVISION now becomes an even more viable promotional platform for NASCAR's major sponsors. The movie goer gets more exciting content to watch and SCREENVISION has new branded content to sell at a premium. More media companies need to develop these types of partnerships.

HOW DO THEY DO IT? Once again, Carol Smith, SVP and Brand Director for Elle Magazine has beat out all her major competitors with ad page counts with her November issue. Ditto for Carlos LaMadrid, SVP and Brand Director for Woman's Day. This just goes to show that marketing smarts can often beat out larger budgets and staffs. Hopefully, Hachette President Alain LeMarchand shows some appreciation?

SO THE DOW IS OVER 10,000 - SO WHAT? Jobs continue to be cut and eliminated at most major newspaper, magazine, broadcast and all other type media companies. Will someone save the New York Times from their" Penny Pincher " publisher? The latest newsroom cut of 100 staffers further weakens the bgrand. At some point what made the NYT a "must read" for so many people will be no more. SURPRISE!: Gourmet's sub price of 12 issues for $15 was higher than SELF's $12 a year sub offer.

CONGRATULATIONS & HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Michael's Restaurant celebrates its 20th anniversary on November 4th. While the ambiance of great art, spacious dinning, and a club like atmosphere is second to none; the food has become equally as good. Whether you sit among the media mavens, celebrities or the rich and famous up front; the service and food is outstanding throughout the restaurant.

Florida International University (42,000 students) is now the 24th largest university in the country. It's mass communications and journalism school is one of the top ten. FIU was started in 1972 with just 5,400 students. It has re-invented itself and today is the leading source for information on the HISPANIC market. More and more companies are visiting FIU's communications school to garner marketing insights from it's outstanding faculty and student body which is 70% HISPANIC.

Steve's new book You Can't Fall Off The Floor - The Insiders' Guide to Re-Inventing Yourself and Your Career chronicles his 50 year career working for over 25 different companies with 189 lessons learned and insider tips from Gayle King, Cathie Black, Chuck Townsend and 28 others; Blacker is still going strong today as a partner in Frankfurt & Blacker Solutions, LLC. His web site is blacker-reinventions.com and e-mail address is blackersolutions@aol.com

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