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Friday, July 08, 2005

An E-Zine Format That Works 

Following my post on my recent nightmare e-zine experience, semi-regular reader David Newcorn, who's VP/New Media for Summit Publishing, emailed to say that his company used Flipviewer for about a year for the company's two trade magazines--Packaging World and Automation World--until scrapping it in favor of digital magazines designed for the screen, without special software.

These zines aren't replications of the magazines (the magazines now use simple links to current features in html), but serve as something between an 'extra' magazine and an e-newsletter. You can view Summit's two zines here and here.

These zines use the horizontal format I like so much in the International Herald Tribune, and provide short, pithy pieces, links to longer stuff if necessary, and a number of advertising slots.

I very much like what I see, not only in the technology, but in the design, execution and extended content. Let me know if you agree or disagree.

By the way, David Newcorn writes the B2B Digital Media blog, adding to the small cadre of b2b media bloggers. (I've put him on my link list to the right, and my reading list. He has an excellent post on the results of some research his company conducted with its digital publication subscribers.

Key Grab: The things publishers of B2B digital media fret about the most--whether our content is on target, are we bypassing the spam filter, do our fancy technological contraptions work universally--are NOT at issue.

We've never really focused on what happens after the email is delivered. And that's where the trouble starts. Worse, all of these factors are entirely out of our control

Also check out the interesting comment thread to the post, with some thoughts on the differences between digital publications and blogs from the user perspective.


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