The Next Big Thing: Book-a-zines
William Higham defines a trend as a long-term change in consumer attitudes and behaviors that offer marketing opportunities. Trends are the manifestation of change. To identify a new trend, marketers need to look for any signs of change among consumers. These can be either a change in behavior or attitude.”
Based on William Higham’s theory of trend spotting in “The Next Big Thing” as discussed in our textbook and in class, I have identified two opposing trends that I feel are happening simultaneously in the market place: Some magazines going digital, while other magazines are either just launching in print, or changing their editorial content to something that lends itself more to print.
One example of this is with my own family’s publication, BEAUTY FASHION, which while celebrating it’s 100th anniversary this year, has been struggling to exist over the past few years since more and more people are getting their news from the internet and social media. They have had to make a real effort to transition their publication to digital and to get both their readers and advertisers to sign-up for their digital newsletter. Meanwhile, my friends at Parsons -who have grown up getting their news online and from social media, have actually launched a retro print magazine featuring content on youth culture called UNCOMMON.
I see this as a trend, not just a one-off example because I also recently received a subscription offer from VOGUE which literally stated, “For 125 years, VOGUE has defined the culture of fashions and led readers to what’s next in style and beyond. Join the legacy by subscribing to VOGUE in its original format – the print magazine. Fashions are fleeting, but little compares to having a physical copy of VOGUE in your hands.
I think magazines are coming back because while anyone can take a selfie or Instagram a shot of their food using their iPhone, magazines that feature the work of real photographers who know how to use an actual camera with better lenses and lighting, become something special.
Magazines may not be published monthly anymore, they may have to evolve to become more like books, or special issues. I have heard the term “book-a-zine” used to describe them recently. Instead of January, February and March issues, magazines might have special issues on a Fashion, Beauty, Art or Design.
Al in all, I believe that while some magazines are struggling to survive as print publications and trying to go digital, other magazines are launching in print. If they change their editorial content to something that lends itself more to print like art and design and use great photographers in fabulous settings, they can evolve to become the next big thing.