Friday, 14 June 2013

The value of magazines

So, we've been busy over the last few months, for a change.... We are working hard to drive prices down so that you - Dear reader, - can buy magazines by the copy for cover price or so. We envisage a magazine world where you can get timely info on all issues as they are published, to decide which ones you want and when. We aren't fans of overly cheap produce in return for habit and data that is so prevalent a mantra in this day and age. We think that just drives down quality in the longer term. Print magazines need to work hard at the moment - show the consumer what they have to offer - the very last tonic on the table is the one that calls for the cheap and cheerful. That's just our opinion - we live and die by them, of course.

That sounds simple enough, but I have to confess it's not as easy as it should be. We don't deal in data here at Newsstand. We try and provide an unbeatable service that is worth paying for. No hidden costs, no renewal, just a magazine and a price. We rely, to a certain extent, on the customer deciding what they want and then paying a reasonable price for it. I would have to say that in this train of thought we are not alone, as the tide of quality over quantity gathers momentum in the magazine world. Occasionally, though, it needs reinforcing, if only via a blog that few, in the grand scheme of things, will set eyes upon. Folk, quite understandably, yearn for economy in all areas - its just that economy often leads to quality issues, as sure as night follows day.

Anyway, to get to the point, things are moving and moving fast. There is now a, an army of online magazine retailers selling quality magazines that are being launched in extraordinary numbers across Europe and beyond. Many of them are simply labours of love; as far from the money making machines of the mainstream as you could encounter. The truth is, good (I mean really good) magazines don't make really good profits - it's not unlike good cars, or vegetables or even ideas.

You see, it is not a question of price. It is a question of value. The value of reading, owning or just knowing about a product that someone has put time, effort and love into - far outweighs a quick read amongst the ads. You don't even have to own it...if it wasn't out there somewhere things would look a lot more dismal. What we are trying to say is - support those publishers that are out there dedicating hours to a may not always like what they produce but it has a quality, a quality that would be sorely missed if there was no sign of it.