Canadian Magazine Industry News
25 February 2010,     TORONTO
CSME panel talks on importance of brand across platforms
Last night in Toronto, the Canadian Society of Magazine Editors held its first event of 2010, “Multimedia, One Brand”. The panel discussion from industry experts talked about how to keep magazine brands strong across different platforms.
Jennifer Melo, Kathy Ullyott, Edward Fraser and Jackie Kovacs
Jennifer Melo, Kathy Ullyott, Edward Fraser and Jackie Kovacs at CSME


Homemakers editor in chief Kathy Ullyott along with web editor Jennifer Melo said a key for their team is knowing the difference between the web and print audience. “We have a very loyal community,” said Ullyott. “We try to extend that community through the website, while keeping a consistency between print and the web.” Melo noted the audience on the web is much more diverse and not as loyal as that of the magazine. “Readers don’t take ownership of the website like they do the magazine,” she said. “When someone goes to the website they are looking for something specific, magazine readers are looking for the experience.”

Today’s Parent deputy editor Jackie Kovacs message for the night was have a mandate. “Know it, print it, share it, frame it, put it on the wall,” she said. Keeping a strong concept of its mandate is one of the reasons why Today’s Parent has been the example of “how to do the web” at Rogers, she said. Its success also stems from “cross-pollinating” the web and print teams in meetings and in the use of content. An example she noted is Today’s Parent’s use of Facebook page comments in letters to the editor in the magazine. She also said to “always say maybe” to opportunities that are presented. Because, she said even if they don’t work for the magazine they might work for the web, or one of the newsletters.

Bringing in the mobile discussion was The Hockey News web editor Edward Fraser. He said that users of its mobile applications are almost as high as visitors to The Hockey News site. The different platforms the magazine is part of are all about brand recognition and awareness, he said. Though he noted, the best way to promote your brand is still word of mouth. “Social networks are great for this,” he said. “That concept gets buried but the interaction with readers helps to keep the brand strong.”




 

— Val Maloney
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