The future of magazines – is it really all about the iPad?

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There has been a lot of talk in the last few days about how apps, specifically for the iPad, could save publishing and kill the web. And this from people who really ought to know better. http://gawker.com/5602743/will-wired-proclaim-the-web-is-dead

I still think the future of magazines is up for grabs, but there are some print mags that will continue to thrive. IMO it is looking good for…

1 Small run indie mags – who work in specialist areas and keep costs low eg Shindig http://www.shindig-magazine.com/ There’s a thriving indie mag scene – check out this blog http://magculture.com/blog/

2 Customer publishing mags – Less worry about monetising the mags as they tend to be funded by brands. They remain a superb way for brands to communicate with their audience. Future Pubs latest figures are bolstered by a great performance from its branded content division http://www.mediaweek.co.uk/News/MostEmailed/1020030/Future-UK-revenue-3-group…

Disclaimer – I work for the APA http://www.apa.co.uk/news which works with branded content companies

3 UK magazines – Print seems to by dying a little quicker on the other side of the Atlantic than over here, maybe because print runs are lower and therefore paper costs cheaper. It’ll be fascinating to see IPC’s next move http://www.pressgazette.co.uk/story.asp?storycode=45381

4 Long form magazines – Ones packed with longer features, essays etc which are hard to replicate online

Anyhow, someone way smarter than me, Jeff Jarvis, has just put forward his opinions on the way publishing should develop. http://www.buzzmachine.com/2010/08/04/whither-magazines-2/#

His advice is to forget about print and iPad mags and focus on building communities, start new media brands (and buy ones too), get into selling stuff from your site and cut costs. It all sounds eminently sensible.

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