Tell Your Story Through Brand Publishing
Let’s face it; the customer magazine is a
All that content to be sourced
– the interview with the new VP of springs
and washers who was the only one to say yes, the
customer who agreed to give you a testimonial only
for you to learn now owes you stacks of cash and isn’t
returning accounts calls and then there’s that profile
on the parts manager whose now suspended pending
investigation into his eBay business. But it really
doesn’t have to be like this.
Customer magazines are a well established channel to engage brands with owners – a true opportunity to
deliver the perfect combination of stories and working life content both in print and digitally. Publishing
your own magazine provides the potential to become a trailblazing brand within your market. But, it’s how
you approach the opportunity that counts...
Know your audience
This may sound obvious, but you would be surprised how many brands don’t know their customers’ as well
as they ought to. This can certainly be true when products are sold through independent dealerships and
that’s a story on it’s own. Get to know them, find out how, where, when and why? You can’t begin without
Plan, plan, plan
Yes, it takes time and indeed effort, but the more
you get right before you begin your first issue the
better. Ask yourself . . . What’s the shape and size?
What’s the frequency? What’s the editorial tone
and style? Are you image or copy led? Will there
be regular features? How many copies printed?
Will it be print only or available in digital format?
This is important from the outset, don’t try to
shoehorn a printed magazine onto the web at a
later date. If you’re going out all guns blazing then
the form and function must match that of the media.
Content is king
Have a clear content plan. Make it authentic and
reinforce the owners’ decision to purchase your
vehicle. A recent survey by Jaguar Land Rover found
that 85% of people who read their magazines were
more positive about the brand. Quality stories,
photos, illustrations and video must be at a premium
level connecting with other brand messaging via
social media, experiential and direct marketing.
Use the MacGuffin
Alfred Hitchcock popularised the term MacGuffin,
a plot element that catches the viewers attention
to great effect – in crook stories it’s almost always
the necklace and in spy stories the papers. What’s
your MacGuffin? Surprise them.
Hold your nerve
The brand history books are littered with
well-intentioned customer magazines that bit the
dust because it was easy to dump them when the
budgetary belts got tightened. Don’t add your
publication to this list; if the history books teach us
anything those brands that lost their nerve also lost
a bit of their soul too.
Still with us?
If all this sounds like hard work it is, but the rewards
are waiting for you. Leave mediocrity as the preserve
of your competitors, right now an opportunity exists
to steal a march and become a truly trailblazing
brand. Be that brand, claim that ground.