Campaign India Team
Oct 12, 2011

The future of international magazine brands in a 360 degree media world

A report from the session at the 38th FIPP World Magazine Congress

The future of international magazine brands in a 360 degree media world

Duncan Edwards, president and chief executive officer, Hearst International, USA kicked off the proceedings by stating, "The magazine is at the heart of our strategy. It is the best single expression of the brand. Most publishers have been disappointed by the free-web. It has been less exciting than expected.. The investment has been higher compared to ROI."
 
Edwards felt, "Our experience is that portable digital devices consumers like the way magazines are designed and laid out… and that's why prefer  them instead of replicating the real paper magazine."
 
Edwards thought the most promising market for Hearst International after China is India. He said, "We have already got businesses in Mainland China and it has been growing quite quickly. We believe that India will grow at the same pace." He added, "Central eastern Europe also holds enormous potential."
 
Torsten Klein, president, Gruner+Jahr, Germany, said, "We are still making our money from print. Therefore, we have to focus on that. Nevertheless, we need to figure out new revenue streams and that is why we have to be at the digital arena. Plus we want to expand to the new regions."
 
Klein stated, "Let us not make the same mistake again to give our content for free when we are talking about iPads. We did that with online content and we haven't been able to come out of that."
 
Roberto Brigilia, chief content manager and general manager of international activities, Mondadori, Italy, said, "Talking about the tablet makes sense since the future is there. However, we must not forget that our base of revenue still stems from the magazine. If brand and content are our assets, we have to reinvent them."
 
He added, "If we summarise our job, it's to give information and entertainment to the readers. We could use the same editorial team with different competence for the digital versions. The most important part of being a journalist is to tell a story and telling a story through iPad is different than in print or any other digital devices. Therefore, it might be a mistake to keep the same team of journalists for print and digital."
 
Brigilia stated the Mondadori group was eying Brazil, India, China and Russia; and even, "South Africa would be interesting for us."

Source:
Campaign India

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