The second installment of Toward A New Understanding of Publishing is up over at the FM Blog. From it:
… what does it mean to have a good voice? And how does that relate to publishing?
Marketers have always aligned themselves with great voices: publishers whose communities reflect the Brand’s core values and promise. Some have even taken the next step – they’ve created those communities, extending beyond making a “traditional” media buy. American Express, for example, runs a significant print publishing business that includes Travel+Leisure and Food&Wine. And P&G famously created the soap opera in the early days of television, and today its PGP arm still runs two soaps, as well as the People’s Choice awards.
Initially, the benefits of such moves were clear: profitable properties (a new revenue source), good lists to mine for direct response conversion (marketing efficiency), and a high quality environment in which to market your Brand (well-lit Brand environments).
However, not many brands want to be in the magazine or television business – even when they weren’t in decline, as they are now. There are plenty of significant operating realities that simply do not scale in those mediums, if they ever did. The impetus to creating Brand Publishing offline was strategically correct, but its true value proposition – one all Brands can and must embrace – will be found online.