As magazine brands have morphed into media brands, the staff faces a daunting task: How do we maintain our brand promise and editorial quality while being active across a plethora of channels?
Bon Appetit’s Adam Rapoport feels that pain, as he explains in his article in AdWeek.
“At Bon Appétit we publish a monthly magazine, run a 24-7 website, crank out active Twitter and Instagram feeds, shoot weekly videos, produce special issues, publish cookbooks, record podcasts, orchestrate food festivals and throw really groovy dinners in our fancy-pants dining room at One World Trade Center,” Rapoport writes.
“So yeah, we’re a lot more than just a magazine. We’re absolutely a brand. Or at least we strive to be. The question is how do those of us formerly known as magazines operate on all these platforms while maintaining quality control and staying on message? What’s the secret? I wish I knew,” he continues.
What he does know is that overall, you have to be consistent. “You’ve got to care as much about that 140-character Twitter post as that 1,400-word profile in your magazine. You need to approach everything you create with the same philosophy and same spirit,” Rapoport stresses.
If you find your own brand in the same boat, try these five tips from Rapoport:
1. Follow your gut and write about you truly love or are passionate about.
2. Ask yourself “would I read that?” If the answer is no, rethink your decision to publish it.
3. Study the metrics, yes, but don’t let them dictate. “As soon as you start listening to focus groups and daily stat reports, you’ve sold your soul and will never find your way to anything genuine or interesting. You’re only rehashing what’s already been done rather than inventing,” says Rapoport.
4. Remember that every platform matters. Be your brand no matter where you engage.
5. When in doubt, revisit rule #1. “Editors know when they’re on to something cool and when they’re just phoning it in. And so do their readers (and users and viewers),” says Rapoport.
Be authentic, be passionate and be open. Sounds like a great recipe for success.