Recently, FIPP (the network for global media) published an interesting article discussing How brand magazines are becoming more sophisticated – and successful.
As the author, Piet van Niekerk, puts it - “The world’s best brand magazines learnt early on not to push their products, but rather rely on the merits and value of content to engage readers. Today, they are getting even better at it.”
While the term “content marketing” was not yet created, one of the first examples of a brand magazine in use was the Poor Richard’s Almanack, published in 1732 by Benjamin Franklin to promote his printing business. FIPP’s article also discusses later examples such as The Edison Electric Lighting Company Bulletin in 1882, Johnson & Johnson’s Modern Methods of Antiseptic Wound Treatment in 1888, and The Furrow, published in 1895 on behalf of American manufacturer of agricultural plows, cultivators, and harrows, John Deere.
FIPP’s article suggests that brands should publish content that tells a story surrounding their products and is not overly aimed at selling. The article also reviews some of the unsuspecting industries that have used brand magazines in their mix.
In some cases, brand magazines have also been used as an additional source of income for companies. For example, certain free brand magazines have apparently been so successful that they have eventually been offered for sale. Other companies have managed to earn extra income by offering more sophisticated content that includes a substantial percentage of advertising.
In closing, the article refers to brand magazines as a successful medium that provides an offline experience for audiences. Brands that do it right and offer something unique will be most successful at attracting customers with their content.
The full article on FIPP’s website offers an in-depth review of brand magazine success stories and the companies behind them, as well as tips for companies that are interested in taking this approach to marketing. Check out the article at: How brand magazines are becoming more sophisticated – and successful.