October 31, 2007
Good blogs and websites about magazines and publishing
Though this may shock some MastheadOnline readers, the Internet is filled with other websites and blogs that cover magazines and publishing. Some of these are actually worth reading. Below, you’ll find links to some of our favourites. We’ll do this again in a few weeks.
Canadian Magazines is written mostly by magazine consultant (and Masthead contributor) D.B. Scott. He reports on the Canuck publishing scene using a variety of online sources, including MastheadOnline. He also breaks news stories on occasion. Geist editor Stephen Osborne and Jon Spencer of Abacus Circulation are also listed as contributors.
Folio magazine, America’s magazine about magazines, offers “context, perspective, opinion and community for the magazine media” in Folio: Forum, its aptly named blog,The main Folio website is also excellent.
Folio is published by Red 7 Media, which also publishes Circulation Management magazine. CM’s website provides a newsfeed that will keep you up-to-date on all the circ-related chatter from our neighbour to the South.
Publishing 2.0 is essential reading for anyone who wants to keep on top of digital trends. The man behind it is Scott Karp, president & CEO of Publish2, Inc. Scott is highly opinionated and much of what he says goes against mainstream thought-trains. He’s also remarkably informed and, more-often-than-not, right on the money.
Same goes for Samir Husni. You’d think having one of the world’s best mustaches would be enough for Husni, chair of the journalism department at the University of Mississippi. It’s not. Husni has also tagged himself “Mr. Magazine”—and lived up to the name. He’s got a website, which also carries the feed for his blog.
For news about Canadian journalism, try the Canadian Journalism Project’s newsfeed at J-Source.ca. It aggregates stories about Canadian media from around the Web. The latest Ryerson Review of Journalism crop, meanwhile, is once again posting weekly online features and doing the blog thing as well. And for news, views and discussion from Canada's professional writing sector, visit the PWAC Blog.
Those looking for more of a consumer perspective can check out The Toronto Star’s John Sakamoto, who goes Off the Rack every Sunday. It’s unlikey he runs into the Ottawa Citizen’s Bruce Deachman at the Magazine Stand, but he may have seen The Globe and Mail’s James Adams On the Stand last weekend. Slate keeps you posted on What’s in Other [America] Magazines. For music-lovers, the popular Idolator blog reviews the latest rock magazines in the often-hilarious Rock-Critically Correct
Last, but surely not least, there’s the websites for Masthead’s sister publications: Graphic Monthly’s PrintCan.com will keep production staff in the know about everything to do with Canadian printing, while DesignEdgeCanada.com is the best news source for everyone in the art department.
What magazine blogs and websites do you read? Send your suggestions to email@example.com and we’ll publish them in our next round up.
October 30, 2007
Farming For Tomorrow spreads across the prairies
CALGARY-As interest in sustainable agriculture grows, so does Farming For Tomorrow magazine.
Farming For Tomorrow, which focuses on sustainable agriculture, will print a Manitoba edition beginning next year.
The Alberta-based magazine, which launched in 1997, increased its frequency from annual to bi-annual last year. This year, the magazine launched a Saskatchewan edition and next spring year, Manitoba edition will be introduced. This will bring Farming For Tomorrow’s circulation up to about 135,000 from 110,000.
By printing separate editions, the magazine can tackle and dissect issues specific to each province, publisher Tom Bradley says. The expansion will also accommodate advertisers who want to reach farmers in all three prairies.
Farming For Tomorrow’s growth reflects a growing interest sustainable agriculture., Bradley says.
The magazine runs articles on the environmental concerns of farmers, such as soil conservation and renewable energy technologies. Readers include prairie farmers and those with a general interest in agriculture.
“The environment is at the top of everyone’s list, especially farmers,” Bradley says.
Maclean’s hires Andrew Coyne;Châtelaine editor resigns
Some major personnel changes to report at Rogers.
Andrew Coyne has been appointed national editor at Maclean’s. Coyne comes over from the National Post, where he worked since the newspaper’s founding as a national affairs columnist. He will join the weekly magazine in November.
“He'll write a column as well as longer pieces,” said Maclean’s editor and publisher Ken Whyte in a press release. “We'll also benefit from his editorial guidance in our coverage of national affairs in print and online. Andrew knows Canada and its politics as very few others do but his interests are broader than just Ottawa and we intend to use the full scope of his talents at Maclean's."
On his blog, Coyne writes that while he is sad to leave the Post, the Maclean’s opportunity was just to good to pass up.
“I have always wanted to try my hand at editing,” he writes, “and having only ever worked in newspapers, am eager to see what the magazine side of the business looks like.”
At Châtelaine, France Lefebrve has resigned as editor-in-chief. Lefebrve left the magazine in mid-September, according to Suneel Khanna, a Rogers spokersperson, meaning her editorship lasted just seven months.
Lefebrve was appointed editor of the magazine in February, moving over from Coup de Pouce, where she had previously worked as editor-in-chief for eight years. No reason was given for her departure.
Both Châtelaine and Chatelaine are now without editors; Sara Angel left the English-language title in August. Lise Ravary, editorial director of women's titles at Rogers, is running editorial operations at both magazines until replacements are found.Khanna would not go into detail on whether new editors would be announced in the near future. “For the time being we’re focused on the day to day.”
October 26, 2007
Marketing and CARD to work more closely
TORONTO-Rogers Media Inc. is linking CARD and Marketing magazine. CARD will be providing statistics to Marketing Magazine and Marketing Magazine will be providing editorial content to CARD.
“In 2008 the websites will be more closely linked, but as for the print there will be no changes,” says Christopher Loudon, publisher and editor-in-chief of Marketing.
Both publications rely on the same advertisers, says CARD publisher Bruce Richards, so the coming together will create stronger ad sales.
In related news, Christopher Loudon has been promoted to publisher of Marketing. John Milne, senior vice-president for the business division at Rogers Media Inc., was previously listed as publisher in the magazine’s masthead.
Loudon’s promotion has resulted in a number of other bump-ups at Marketing, listed below (previous position in brackets):
Executive editor–Paul Ferriss (Managing editor)
Managing editor–Rob Gerlsbeck (associate editor)
Associate publisher, sales and marketing–Carol Eby (director of sales and marketing)
Associate Publisher–Bruce Richards (also publisher of CARD)-Deanna Lampert
Broken Pencil ’zine festival happens this weekend in Toronto
TORONTO-This Sunday, Broken Pencil Magazine, a Canadian publication devoted to underground culture and the independent arts, hosts Canada’s largest ’zine fair and festival of alternative culture. This annual event, called Hotel Canzine, will be held at The Gladstone Hotel in downtown Toronto. The horror theme coincides with Halloween.
There will be 150 Canadian magazines on display and for sale at the festival. Indie publishers from around the country will be showcasing their publications and goods.
Visitors will be invited to sit around the “Canzine camp fire” to hear writers Tony Burgess, Kate Story, Maggie MacDonald, Joey Comeau, and Brett Alexander Savory tell 10 minute ghost stories. There will also be horror video screenings by indie filmmakers including any videos that are 10 minutes or under by those attending.
Two workshops will also be held at the show: Do It Yourself Gorefest, a workshop on affordable special effects; and Indie Artist, Promote Yourself, a how-to guide for DIY Promotion lead by Trevor Coleman. A murder mystery will also be taking place throughout the afternoon.The fair will run 1-7 p.m. Admission is $5. For more information on the festival check out Canzine 2007.
October 24, 2007
Canadian Geographic Travel increases frequency
TORONTO-Canadian Geographic has announced it will increase the frequency of its Travel magazine from two to four issues per year. Combined with the bi-monthly flagship title, this adds up to ten Canadian Geographic issues per year.
The CGE team is discussing redesigns for both magazines in 2008, Prociuk said. She also confirmed that the company has put its Ottawa building up for sale.
“The building is just too large,” says Prociuk. “We want our focus to be on publishing, not getting tenants for the basement.”
CGE has undergone a number of changes since former Transcontinental Media president Andre Préfontaine was appointed president 16 months ago.
In September, the company announced a distribution deal with Coast to Coast Newsstand Services. Prior to that, CGE outsourced its fulfillment services operations to Indas Ltd. and discontinued its merchandising and catalogue operations. In the last year, meanwhile, at least four experienced circulators have left or been laid off.
The publication is in its 78th year and had the second-highest readership of any magazine in the country (4,400,000), according to the Print Measurement Bureau (PMB) 2007 topline report.
CGE will celebrate tonight with a function in downtown Toronto.-Deanna Lampert
October 23, 2007
CalgaryInc hires a new editor-in-chief
CALGARY-RedPoint Media Group Inc. has appointed Carol Harrington as editor-in-chief of CalgaryInc magazine. Harrington, who previously served as the magazine’s managing editor, replaces Christina Reynolds, who left in late August. She begins her new job Nov. 1.
New CalgaryInc editor Carol Harrington.
“The two reasons we took on Carol are because of her familiarity with the community and her experience,” said Gary Davies, CalgaryInc’s interim publisher and VP operations of RedPoint Media Group. “Her background is quite extensive.”
Indeed it is.
“I look forward to the challenge of working with and for the talented CalgaryInc team and rubbing elbows with Calgary's business community,” Harrington said in a RedPoint press release. “It will indeed be an inspiring adventure.”-Deanna Lampert
October 22, 2007
Transcontinental Inc. to promote environmentally friendly paper
MONTREAL-Last week, Transcontinental Inc. announced a paper purchasing policy that will promote the use of environmentally friendly paper, making the Quebec corporation the first major North American printer to do such a thing.
The environmentally preferable papers will use more recycled fibres. Options include:
If it’s necessary to use virgin wood, Transcon is offering fibres from managed forests with high conservation values and certified by a recognized environmental organization, such as FSC.
Along with the policy, there is a classification process, which will be used to help clients with choosing preferred paper. The classification document, which evaluates the paper, is based on criteria like the total percentage of recycled fibre and the level of protection for ancient forests.
The policy will not be imposed, according to Nessa Prendergast, director of media relations at Transcontinental Inc. Clients will have the choice to become more environmentally conscious with their paper and publishing needs. Most clients have already been using paper that promotes sustainable development on an informal basis.
The Paper Purchasing Policy was developed with contributions from Markets Initiative, a leading North American environmental publishing advocate.
The Transcontinental website outlines the company-wide environmental polices and procedures that are founded on these three principles: protection of the environment for present and future generations, reduction of risks and efficiency improvement, and introduction of improved technology and processes.-Deanna Lampert
October 19, 2007
CSME elects a new president
Bob Sexton is the new president of the Canadian Society of Magazine Editors. Sexton, associate editor at Outdoor Canada, was elected at a CSME board meeting last night in Toronto.
New CSME president Bob Sexton on a research trip for Outdoor Canada
“It’s an honour,” Sexton says. “I’m excited and enthusiastic about the year to come and hope to continue to build on the work that’s been done in the past.”
Sexton replaces Douglas Thompson, editor in chief at Canadian Home Workshop, who served as CSME president for three years. Thompson, currently studying for his MBA at the Odette School of Business at the University of Windsor, will stay on in a past president’s role. Somehow, he’s also doing work for the National Magazine Awards board.
Also stepping down from the CSME board is Wallie Seto, president of the Independent Publishers Association of Ontario.
The new board looks like this:
President - Bob Sexton, associate editor of Outdoor Canada magazine.
Vice-President - Laurie Jennings, managing editor of Wish and Gardening Life.
Treasurer - Angela Keenlyside, senior managing editor of Chirp, chickaDEE and OWL.
Program/Communications Director - Liann Bobechko, assistant editor at Cottage Life.
Awards Director - Jodi Avery MacLean, managing editor at Canadian Home Workshop.
Membership Director - Martin Zibauer, senior editor of Cottage Life.
Technical Co-ordinator - Jessica Ross, executive editor of Homemakers.
October 18, 2007
A new look and feel for Canadian Business
TORONTO-The latest issue of Canadian Business hits newsstands today with a complete aesthetic redesign, accompanied by a few changes to editorial.
Part of the magazine’s new look—including the new slab serif logo—was unveiled two weeks ago in the special Canada 2020 issue.
The redesign includes all new fonts, more space for display copy, a shifting of all non-feature sections to the front of the book, a new section called Outlook that will carry forward-looking stories and a return of the company index. Features will also be longer, an interesting development that suggests CB has not bought into the very popular “busy readers want shorter stories” school-of-thought.
The last time CB redesigned was in 2000, though the bi-weekly magazine also made some major changes in 2003. The new look will allow the title to play to its strengths, says editor in chief Joe Chidely, which include forward-looking analysis and in-depth profiles.
The magazine redesign, helmed by Chidley and long-time art director Tim Davin, coincides with a redesign of Canadian Business Online. The two products will be further integrated, especially through the new “Briefcase” section, which throws readers to ongoing and updated coverage concerning Canadian Business stories at canadianbusiness.com.CB is the highest grossing business magazine in Canada, earning $11.2-million in 2006, according to Masthead’s Top 50. It has a PMB readership of 984,000 and an ABC-audited circulation of about 91,000.
October 16, 2007
Ryerson launches master of journalism program
TORONTO- Beginning in Sept. 2008, working journalists looking to enhance their skills will have a new educational option. Ryerson University’s School of Journalism will for the first time offer a master of journalism degree to scribes and editors who have been in the field for three or more years.
Gene Allen, Ryerson's MJ program director
“There are not a lot of well-organized educational options for journalists in mid-career,” says Gene Allen, director of the new master program, which also offers a two-year master’s degree aimed primarily at graduate students who wish to enter journalism for the first time.
Students in the one-year accelerated program for working journalists will take courses such as “Research Methods for Journalists,” “Critical Approaches to Journalistic Practice,” and “Urban Politics and Society for Journalists,” blending theory with hands-on practice. The program will culminate with the completion of a major project, such as a lengthy magazine feature, a series of newspaper articles, or a documentary. “What we hope is that it gives people a more sophisticated set of tools,” Allen says.
Only five applicants will be admitted into the accelerated program, though that number may go up in the future, Allen says. He says he “doesn’t really have a clue” how many people will apply, though the numbers from the two-year program—more than 300 applicants for 27 spots—suggest competition may be stiff.
Carlton University in Ottawa also offers one and two-year programs for mid-career journalists.Ryerson launched the new program with a reception held yesterday at the new George Vari Engineering and Computing Centre. Among the media types on hand for the free booze and food were Toronto Star columnist Thomas Walkom, Globe and Mail foreign correspondent Graeme Smith, magazine freelancer Ian Pearson and former Toronto Star publisher John Honderich.
October 15, 2007
Magazine advertising continues steady growth in third quarter
NATIONAL-Third quarter data from Leading National Advertisers (Canada) tells the same story as the numbers from the first two quarters: an increase in run-of-press ad pages for 93 of the country’s leading magazines compared to the same period in 2006.
Total ROP count is up 2.8% for the July-Sept. 2007 period, which translates into a quarterly adspend of $159.4-million. That’s an increase of $8.8-million from the same period in 2006 (based on static rate card figures).
Both the first and second quarter of 2007 saw 3% increases in ROP page counts compared to 2006.
The quarter’s biggest gainers were Hello! Canada (111.7%), Canadian Home Workshop (83.4%), Outdoor Canada (81.8%) and LouLou (English edition) (52.6%).
Certain categories, such as business, appear to have fared poorly in this year’s third quarter, while others, such as shopping, thrived. However, it can be perilous to read too much into quarterly results (the business magazines, for example, all made big jumps in the first quarter).
Following is a sector-by-sector (or, in some cases, a rival-to-rival) breakdown, based on growth or decline in ROP page counts in the third quarter 2007 vs. third quarter 2006.
Business: Canadian Business (-35.7%); Report on Business (-8.8%); Financial Post Business (-20.4%); Affaires Plus (-33.5%); Profit (-35.4%); MoneySense (-16.8%).
General interest: Reader’s Digest (10.3%); Selection du Reader’s Digest (18.6%); Canadian Geographic (-8.7%); Vancouver (22.4%); Toronto Life (37%); Now (-8.6%); eye (-9.8%).
Greenthumb: Gardening Life (10.1%); Canadian Gardening (-14.6%).
Parenting: Canadian Family (0.9%); Today’s Parent (16.7%).
Shelter: Canadian House & Home (-7.2%); Style at Home (-3.5%); Canadian Home & Country (28%); Harrowsmith CountryLife (0.9%); Decormag (-15.8%); Les Idees de ma maison (1.6%); Decoration chez-soi (-1.1%).
Shopping: LouLou (31%); LouLou, French edition (52.6%); Wish (14.2%).
Special interest: explore (10.2%); Outdoor Canada (81.8%); Ontario Out of Doors (-6.7%); Canadian Home Workshop (83.4%); Cottage Life (-36.7%).
Weekly news: Maclean’s (-19.4%); Time (-17.8%).
Women’s service: Chatelaine (9.4%); Châtelaine (24%); Glow (20.6%); Canadian Living (25.3%); Homemakers (-9.4%); Madame (14.6%); Clin d’oeil (-16%); Coupe de pouce (15.8%);
Fashion: Flare (11.9%); Fashion (2.3%) Elle Quebec (-2.7%); Elle Canada (0.2%);.
October 11, 2007
All not so quiet on the Western luxury home front
VANCOUVER-Former Dream House Publications owner Greg Bobolo is launching a new magazine that will go head-to-head with the magazine he launched in 2003.
Bobolo’s new title, Home & Style, will launch in November with an initial circulation run of 30,000. It will target the same well-to-do Western audience as Dream House, now owned by entrepreneur Mitch Taylor—and the same advertisers.
Taylor bought Bobolo out in September 2006 in a seven-figure deal, according to Bobolo. The former owner agreed to stay on as company president for one year and signed a non-compete agreement. But when Dream House went bankrupt this summer, Bobolo was freed from the clause and decided to go into direct competition with his old magazine.
Bobolo is confident he can draw his old readers and advertising partners to his new magazine. “I feel I have a leg up on that publication. There’s nobody of any real knowledge-base running that company,” he says. “The whole reason why there was a non-compete was because they didn’t want someone like me coming in and taking their advertising base away from them, which is what I’m planning on doing.”
The new Home & Style will publish eight times a year and will be distributed through a mix of controlled and paid circulation. Subscriptions will sell for $59.95 (though Bobolo doesn’t expect anyone will pay that much during the first two years of business) and on newsstands for $6.95.
Bobolo’s strategy will involve branding each issue with a new title. While the Home & Style logo will appear on every cover, each issue will have a separate theme, such as “Yachting” and “Fine Auto,” that will be highlighted on the cover with a larger logo. Bobolo says this will allow him to reach specific vertical markets for both advertising and readership. “For example, in the yachting industry,” he says, “you’re going to get more ad dollars from a vertical title positioned directly. We used to lose a lot of ad dollars at Dream House because of that fact.”
Taylor and his business associates, meanwhile, survived bankruptcy and re-launched the company as Dream House Publications 2007 Inc. Fiona Ahrens has been added as publisher and the Sept./Oct. issues of Dream House featured a new look and new editorial features. The magazine’s mixed circulation of 30,000 uses targeted direct mail to million-dollar-plus homes, exclusive hotels, airline and resort partnerships, inserts in the Globe and Mail to premium neighbourhoods, and select national newsstands.(See the Nov/Dec issue of Masthead, mailing Nov. 16, for more on this story.)
October 10, 2007
Masthead launches history-making project
MISSISSAUGA, ON.-To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Masthead is launching an historic editorial project to decide the 20 Most Influential Canadian Magazines of All Time.
Masthead readers are being invited to discuss and debate which titles have made the greatest impact on the Canadian publishing landscape in an online forum. The forum will close on Dec. 1, at which point an editorial panel swayed by the forum discussion will make the final choices. The list will be published in the Jan/Feb 2008 edition of Masthead.
Influence will be weighed in a number of areas, including impact on the national agenda, literature, society and social issues, design, the industry or region served, popular culture, the international scene, the careers of contributors and so on.
“There’s never been anything like this before,” says Masthead publisher and founding editor Doug Bennet. He expects the forum conversation to be lively and entertaining. “Everyone loves lists. We want this to be a definitive list and the best way to achieve that is by giving readers the opportunity to have their say.”If you wish to participate, you must create a user identity on the forum (this doesn’t have to be your real name). You are then free to comment on the debate already begun, nominate new magazines, or create new categories. Masthead is hoping for a wide-open conversation.
October 5, 2007
The Western Standard shuts down
CALGARY-The Western Standard is ceasing publication after almost four years and 82 issues of right-wing, Alberta-centric news and commentary, founder and publisher Ezra Levant told Masthead in an interview Friday.
The title published its final issue Sept. 17.
The magazine, which at one point carried a staff of over 40 people, was down to a team of just five 100 days before closing. “At the end of the day, the financial numbers were the reason we shut down,” Levant said.
The problems came mainly from publishing costs such as postal rates, printing and staffing, Levant said. He also said the magazine’s independence, while beneficial from an editorial point-of-view, hurt it in other ways. “When you’re small, you don’t have the same sort of muscle dealing with newsstand retailers,” he added. The magazine also didn’t qualify for charitable status like other political magazines such as The Walrus, Levant added, and did not receive any government grants.
The Western Standard had an ABC-audited total circulation of 33,809 and a subscriber renewal rate of 80%. Advertiser support was solid, according to Levant, who said the magazine was on pace to earn over $1-million in ad revenue this year.
Cost-saving measures, such as reducing frequency from bi-weekly to once every three weeks, were considered, Levant said. In the end, though, there was no way to get the books into the black.
The Standard became well known to politicos across the country for its brash, unapologetic conservatism, following in the footsteps of Ted Byfield’s Albert Report. In the last issue, freelancer Ric Dolphin, writing about the MacKenzie Valley Pipeline, noted: “The latest standoff…should tell…any oil company with half a brain that a pipeline through this wacky land of bureaucrats and Indians is simply not worth the trouble.”
It also got itself attention through provocative editorial decisions. In February 2006, for example, the magazine published Danish cartoon depictions of the Prophet Mohammed that enraged much of the Muslim world. It also leaked the Liberal “Red Book” campaign platform on its website prior to the 2006 federal election.Levant said he is proud of everything the magazine accomplished during its short life, despite its financial shortcomings. “We didn’t just live,” he said. “We lived noisily.”
PanoramItalia brings Italian culture to a North American audience
MONTREAL-Tony Zara is hoping to turn what has started as a hobby and passion for all things Italian into an international magazine about “living Italian style.”
The newly released 2007 issue of PanoramItalia, a high-end, coffee-table style magazine which has been published annually since 2002 and distributed for free primarily in Quebec, is now being sold on newsstands across North America. Ssarting next spring, the magazine will be published bi-annually.
PanoramItalia has lost about $250,000 since its launch, but publisher Zara says it’s not about the money and that the $10 million in annual sales from his Montreal printing company Accent Impression pays the bills. Rather, the magazine is a form of therapy for the Italian-born Zara and a way to glorify his native country and culture. “I never accepted the fact I left my village,” he says, noting the magazine’s attempts “to show the world that 99.99% of us are not Mafiosos.”
Zara decided to go the newsstand route after a test run last year by Benjamin News, in which
a few thousand copies of the 2006 edition were distributed to retailers in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces, sold about 60% of the copies at a $7.95 cover price.
The magazine will be distributed by Coast to Coast Newsstand Services Partnership on newsstands in Canada, as well as at 450 Barnes & Noble outlets in the U.S. It’s also distributed privately in Montreal to Italian retailers and part of the expected 40-50,000 copies will be sent to Italian Canadian and American business associations.
Says Zara, “We get an enormous amount of mail from people (asking) ‘When is the next issue out’? They’re expressing their passion for this magazine. But are these people actually going to pay for it now? That’s the million dollar question that we want answered.”
PanoramItalia covers all things Italia, from food and wine to fashion, personalities, architecture and travel. The current 148-page issue includes features on Siena, Italy, the 100 Italian wines worth buying, and Federico Castelluccio, who played Furio on The Sopranos.
A one-time full-page colour ad costs $6,250.
Since last year, Zara has also been publishing a trilingual quarterly magazine for the Montreal Italian community, also under the PanoramItalia name. It has a circulation of 80,000, with about 50,000 copies of the giveaway sent by mail to Italian households, and the remaining 30,000 copies distributed throughout the city. The quarterly loses about $25,000 per issue, but Zara thinks it’s possible for both magazines to make money.
“It’s a culture that’s widely, widely accepted by everyone. That’s why I believe that these magazines can succeed.”
Contact: (514) 337-7870
October 4, 2007
Canadian magazine publishing news in brief
INDAS Limited, Canada’s largest fulfillment house, is being rebranded. The U.S. based parent company CDS Global (owned by the Hearst Corporation) is applying that name to all its properties, which include Tower Publishing in England and Australia and CDS, United States, along with INDAS in Canada. The company logo will also change across the board. You can view the company press release here. Look for an interview with INDAS Canada CEO Bill Kaluski later this month.
alive to provide syndicated content for Metro newspapers
Beginning Oct. 9, Richmond, B.C. based alive magazine will provide syndicated content to the weekly “Mind & Body” lifestyle section and the monthly “Lifeline” health and wellness section of Metro newspapers. Readers will be directed to natural health stores where alive is available, as well as alive.com. Metro Newspapers are published in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Toronto and have an estimated readership of 700,000 per day, mostly commuters.
OMDC Interactive Digital Media Fund deadline set
Publishers with digital destinies who wish to apply for the Ontario Media Development Corporation’s (OMDC) Interactive Digital Media Fund must do so by the new Nov. 19 deadline. Successful applicants will receive a non-refundable contribution of up to $100,000 to a maxium of 50% of the project budget to create a market-ready interactive digital media content product. For more information, go here. Those interested can also attend an information session, beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Oct. 17 at the Conference Centre in Toronto.
Section Rouge amends deal to buy EvolutraLongueuil, Que. based Section Rouge Media Inc. has amended its deal to acquire Evolutra Corporation, an Ottawa-Gatineau based company specializing in web applications development. The new agreement has three major changes: The deadline for closure has been pushed back one month to Nov. 30; Evolutra must acquire a minimum of four technology companies before closure, up from three; and the share consolidation has been increased. Section Rouge will pay $18.3-million in cash and $44.8-million shares after consolidating them on a ten-to-one basis. The shares will have an estimated value of $1.017, the company said. The estimated total value of the deal is $63.9 million. Section Rouge Média is an intergrated entertainment company that publishes several magazines in Quebec, including Photo Police! and Bébé, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Image in Media Inc.
October 3, 2007
New rules to govern relations between online publishers and advertisers
The Wild West of Canadian online publishing is slowly but surely being tamed by the Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada (IAB).
On Monday, the non-profit organization announced a set of online advertising standard terms and conditions and late creative policy. These new rules, which take effect March 1, 2008, will govern relationships between online publishers and advertisers.
The document can be downloaded here.
Up to now, Canadian online publishers have used individual sets of terms and conditions to handle relations with advertisers. But with online marketing becoming more sophisticated, the IAB says a new framework for managing the process was required.
Most of Canada’s media giants are IAB members and the policies were co-brokered by both the agency and publisher sides. “This is a balanced and fair document for all sides,” Dawna Henderson, president and CEO of the henderson bas agency and VP of IAB Canada’s Agency Council, said in an IAB press release.The IAB previously set standards for Canadian ad sizes as part one of its Canadian Universal Ad Package (CUAP). Future phases of the CUAP package will cover rich media and video standards, as well as ad measurement, according to the IAB website.
October 2, 2007
Inside the Rogers and Hearst digital bed
TORONTO-Whether or not to link to outside content is a question many online publishers and editors are grappling with these days. Rogers Media and Hearst Magazines Digital Media, who announced a partnership deal yesterday, may have found a way around this predicament.
Beginning Nov. 1, Rogers and Hearst online magazines will link to specific stories on each other’s websites.
“When visiting a Rogers website, chatelaine.com for example, visitors will see links to contextually relevant stories on Hearst websites,” Hearst spokesperson Jessica Kleiman wrote in an e-mail. “Similarly, Canadian visitors to Hearst websites, cosmopolitan.com, for example, will see links to contextually relevant stories from Rogers’ websites.” Rogers already does this within its own digital properties.
One concern publishers may have regarding outside links is that they draw readers away from paying advertisers. This is less of a problem for Rogers and Hearst now. Rogers becomes Hearst’s ad sales agent in Canada when the partnership agreement kicks in.
This allows Rogers to offer Canadian advertisers “extended reach,” says Louise Clements, Rogers VP, digital properties. “Now as an advertiser, you can buy both Marie Claire and Chatelaine together and reach Canadian eyeballs.”
Hearst will track reader IP addresses, so that Canadians visiting Hearst websites will get Canadian ad content, Clements said.
Advertisers will also be able to vertically target content across Rogers and Hearst websites, Kleiman explained. “For example, an apparel advertiser will be able to target their ads to “fashion” skewed content pages exclusively on our respective sites i.e. Flare, Marie Claire, etc.”Neither party would disclose information about the partnership’s financial arrangements.
October 1, 2007
Analyzing the CMDC’s ad revenue numbers for 2006; Rogers and Hearst announce marketing and sales partnership
There’s both good and bad news for Canadian magazine publishers in the annual Canadian Media Directors’ Council chart tracking net advertising revenue by medium.
The good news: net ad revenue for consumer magazines grew 2.5% in 2006, with publishers earning $685-million in advertising, up from $665-million in 2005.
Growth for consumer magazines has been steady for the last ten years, according to the CMDC’s numbers. Since 1997, ad revenue is up 94%.
The Other Print category (which includes community newspapers, weekend supplements, religious, school, farm, and trade publications) grew a modest 0.4%, earning $1.422 -billion in 2006. The figures in this category represent industry estimates.
These increases reflect an upward trend in total media ad revenue, which has grown 59% over the last ten years.
Now the bad news: although ad revenue for consumer magazines has increased, market share has decreased, dropping from 6% to 5%. The Other Print category, meanwhile, dropped from 12% to 10% in total market share.
These losses can be attributed to the Internet, which grew an astounding 95% in 2006, surpassing the $1-billion mark in net revenue and increasing its market share from 4% to 8%.
The one per cent market share loss for consumer magazines doesn’t worry Gary Garland, executive director of advertising services for Magazines Canada. The Internet is “growing off a small base,” Garland says, “and so in terms of percentage increase it looks absolutely phenomenal, as it should.”
“What I think most agencies and advertisers are realizing quite quickly is that you really can’t do the job if you’re not using traditional media,” Garland says. “So while there’s so much chat about digital media because it’s the new kid on the block, the workhorse remains traditional media and magazines are part of that.”
The CMDC chart is published in Media Digest 07/08, prepared by the CMDC and published by Marketing magazine.
Rogers and Hearst partner up
Of course, Canadian magazine publishers also have the opportunity to cash in on the web-advertising boom. Today, Rogers Media announced a deal which suggests it’s positioning itself to do just that.
The company has entered a partnership with Hearst Magazines Digital Media (whose holdings include cosmopolitan.com, marieclaire.com, cosmogirl.com, goodhousekeeping.com, redbookmag.com and seventeen.com). According to a company press release, Rogers Media will become the exclusive sales agent for Hearst Digital’s properties in Canada and both companies will also cross-promote print subscription sales and drive traffic between each others’ sites.More on this story to come.
|Lorene Shyba says:|