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Posts Tagged ‘Magazine Publishers of America’

Recession Puts Media Conferences On Hold

NMA-2009-Lg.gifTraditionally, media types like to party amongst themselves, dress up in tuxedos and eat chocolate fondue and call it an industry confab. But times are tough. As the print media shrinks, so too do the glitzy, pricey conferences.

Both the American Society of Newspaper Editors and the Magazine Publishers of America have canceled their annual meetings this year due to high price tags and low expected attendance.

However, sometimes the show must go on. Last week, the American Society of Magazine Editors held their 44th Annual National Magazine awards dinner, albeit with some modifications — they dumped the popular chocolate fondue, scaled back the cheese bar and decided not to ask attendees to don black tie attire, Forbes reported.

Meanwhile, here at Mediabistro we’re gearing up for a conference of our own, Mediabistro Circus, which is going on as planned on June 2-3. We’ll be there, will you?

What do you think about industry groups canceling conferences and awards banquets? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Cathie Black Has An E-Crush

Cathie Black, the president of Hearst Magazines, loves the way they get magazines done in places like London and Moscow and Sydney. There, they put out nice, glossy mags with good newsstand sales and a small staff, say 15-20 people, compared to about twice as many people for similar publications in the U.S.

Black was speaking at a Magazine Publishers of America breakfast about how hard it is to get a magazine launched successfully in the U.S. because of all the expectations: a big public launch, lots of staff, “$5 million” overhead, a business plan for many months ahead. “We tried our darnedest” with two of the publications shut down in the past year — Shop Etc. and Weekend — “but they didn’t reach the hurdles we set for them.”

Other notes:

  • Hearst will be launching a Dubai edition of Harper’s Bazaar in the next 60 days.
  • Staff turnover has gone down in the last three months at Hearst because of their fancy new building.
  • Her 18 magazine editors let out a “collective gasp” when told Web editors at Meredith didn’t report to the publications’ editors.
  • Their digital division has sold 1.6 million print subscriptions.
  • She hates the term “value added,” and thinks any salesperson who gives Web ads away to close a deal in print should be shot. (Well, she didn’t say “shot,” but that’s what we heard.)
  • Web profit margins should be 30-50 percent, much higher than in print.
  • Big directional decisions shouldn’t be made only by “five senior managers” in a room, but rather floated among the staff first.
  • If you are under 16 and looking for a date, you should go on, a site with 2.4 million registrants and one Hearst bought this week. Black didn’t say if the registrants were all teenagers.
  • “We are in the bumper car year.” We’re not sure what she meant.

    Here’s the full transcript:

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