Key Areas• Institutional Aspects• Representation• Audience• Media Language
Key QuestionWhat makes a musicmagazine successful?• This could be the first question in the exam. They will give youa list of three things that they think make a magazine brandsuccessful. You will have to talk about these examples in detailreferring to your case studies
• NME is a great example of a magazine that hassuccessfully explored cross media platforms• Kerrang is a great example of a print magazine thatcontinues to appeal to the audience
Why is NME successful?• It is owned by IPC Media which is owned by TimeInc (part ofTime Warner)• It has adapted to the changing listening habits of it audienceand attracted a wider audience• It has embraced online platforms and social media• Developed a strong brand identify through cross mediastrategies• Represents its artists as ideologies which appeal to theaudience• Clear links developed between the print and online versions
Ownership: IPC Media• IPC Media owns and publishes NME• It is the UK‟s leading consumer and digital magazinepublisher• Includes a range of brands from sports, women‟sweeklies, and TV guides.• Sells over 350 million copies per year in total• 27 million adults in the UK buy an IPC magazine• It‟s parent company is Time Warner
Time Inc/Time Warner• One of the largest brandedmedia companies in the world• Engages more than 138million US consumers in print,online and mobile• Time Inc recently launched 21of its US titles as tableteditions, with hundreds ofthousands of consumersupgrading their subscriptionsto include digital.• Has established itself as aleader in the social mediaspace, sharing branded contentwith nearly 18 millionfollowers on Twitter.
Cross-Media Activities• Twitter: NME NewsFeed,NMEFilmAndTV,NMEMagazine,NMEVideo, NME_Radar• iPad edition launched• YouTube channel• Sponsoring festival stagese.g. Reading• Spotify• Radio (digital)
NME TV• There was an NME TV station on Sky• This was closed in 2012• Why do you think the TV station failed?• NME Radio has also closed
Synergy• Synergy is when the various arms of your company worktogether to promote each other• NME webpage has an hyperlink to subscribe to both thedigital and print versions• Shockwaves sponsors the NME tour
Audience• NME‟s audience is defined as:• Male 66%• Female 34%• Median age 24• Music enthusiasts• Social media users• Trend setters• Own the newest mobile technology
Audience & Institutions• Reason for NME’s continuing success is due to its ability toadapt to changes in technology e.g. social media and usergenerated content• NME.com was launched in 1996• Print version circulation went from 68,000 in 1996 to 27,000in 2012.• Whilst the print version sales are slowing, thewebsite is the biggest music site with over 7million hits each month• Going online has helped NME to establish itself as a globalbrand too
Timeline of NME.com• 1996 – NME.com launched• 1997 – Content adapted to focus on news• 1999 – First webcast of a live concert• 2001 – Gave away a free MP3 of The Strokes first single „LastNight‟• 2005 – Content adapted to video and audio• 2007 – NME.com launched in the US• 2010 – Expanded to include TV and film• 2011 – More focus on user engagement including user ratingson reviews
NME in the 2010s…• In May 2011 NME.COM launched a sister site dedicated tovideo, NMEVideo.com,• And released the NME Festivals smartphone app. Sponsoredby BlackBerry, it featured line-ups, stage times, photo galleriesand backstage video interviews, and was downloaded 30,000times.• The following month, NME launched its first iPad app,dedicated to Jack White.• In September 2011, NME.COM organised and live-blogged areal-time Nirvana, Nevermind Twitter listening party tomark the twentieth anniversary of the classic album.
Representation• With reference to Richard Dyer‟stheory, NME represents artists as„ideologies‟• Audiences share the beliefs of thestars• Their fashion may be copied by theaudience• NME audiences very fashionableand lead the trends.
„individually minded, independent of thought and musicallyexperienced, an audience defined by attitude, passion and loyalty‟
Kerrang!• The world’s biggest selling rock music magazine• Published by Bauer media group• Appeals to dedicated rock fans who enjoy going to gigs,are individualistic, and dress like their rock star idols• A very niche audience
Why is Kerrang!successful?• Kerrang! has developed its brandacross a range of media platforms• Strong online presence• Appeals by using strong images andthrough language used• Tends to adapt content to reflectpopular rock sub-genres of the time
Audience appeal• It is evident that the magazine is aimed ata young audience, through the use ofgraphics, fonts, layouts and presentation.• Kerrang! is aimed at the youth and theirlifestyles.• It has a contemporary and up-to-datelook, making use of modern typefaces anda down-to-earth feel.• The magazine even accommodates theyoung readership by using advertisementsthat relate to their interests.
• Kerrang! aims itself more at a maleaudience and appeals to them by usingcontent such as hard rock and metaliconic male bands on the front coverpulling angry faces or violentexpressions.• Female readers are targeted by the useof male bands on free pull out postersand feature interviews.
Media Language• It is also essential to include keywords on the front cover that willattract a greater audience; threewords in particular are believed tohave the greatest effect - free, winand sex.• If all of these words appear on thecover of any magazine it is morelikely to increase sales. Kerrang!uses at least two of these words onevery issue.
Media Language• Kerrang! uses a significant colourpallet, the main colours are white,black, yellow, red and green.• These enable the magazine to beeye-catching and it allows certaincover lines to stand out.• These basic colours are continuedthroughout the 70 pages creating adark and moody ambiance.
Interaction with Audience• Due to the large circulation of the magazine, readers are given theopportunity to interact by writing letters and reviews that may bepublished in the magazine.• Pages of letters, drawings and photos, reader‟s polls, gig reviews,editorial team recommended entertainment, competitions and theKerrang! diary of upcoming gigs all give the readers a chance torespond and share their views and opinions.• The „letter of the week‟ receives feedback from the magazine editorand a £50 music voucher. It is these kinds of interactions that makethe audience feel more involved with the publication they are buyingand less like a sales statistic.
Institutions• Another strategy that Kerrang! have adoptedin order to attract a greater readership isthrough synergy.• As Bauer also own Kerrang! Radio andKerrang! TV they are able to use thesechannels to promote their magazine.• This is an example of cross mediaownership and means that Kerrang! canpromote their products in several broadcastmediums.• Due to Bauer owning several musicmagazines they are able to use this to theiradvantage too. Q magazine and Mojo oftenadvertise subscriptions for Kerrang! in hopesof maximising sales and attracting readersthey may have been unable to reachpreviously.
• Kerrang!„s website isdedicated to finding out moreinformation to do with themagazine and also the latestinformation on the readershipsfavourite bands and upcomingevents.• The website hosts Kerrang‟s!online shop, podcasts,message board, TV and radiosegments ensuring even moreopportunities to sellassociated merchandise andproducts.
Online onlymags• Drowned in Sound• I Like Music
Ilikemusic.com• Online music magazine AND musicservice provider• 11 successful years• Own a collection of over 3 million songs– one of the largest catalogues online!• Launched in 2001 by a small team ofmusic enthusiasts• It‟s aim was to be wholly independent –which it is!• Covers a variety of genres with a focus onnew artists• The only place online where you canstream the entire top 40 singles chart!• Post Playlist is a 20 song playlist chosenby the editor to be streamed too
Is it a good idea to justdistribute the Rhymixwebsite online?
Online only?..• The ways in which audiencelisten to and access music haschanged dramatically in recentyears• MP3 players, i-Pod and digitaldownloading• Some audiences access theinternet more than other mediaformats (especially youngeraudiences – Web natives)• The physical purchasing of aCD is becoming a thing of thepast…it would seem the samecan be said for print magazines.
• 80% of homes in the UK have netaccess• 76% have broadband connection• Print magazines have to work hard,often reinventing themselves, toattract audiences• NME used to be more „dirtynewsprint‟, it re-launched as aglossy which increased costs• Audiences for print based media fallas audience demand readilyaccessible and up to the minuteinformation at the click of a button
Decline• Uncut magazine: lost 14.9% of itscirculation in the second half of 2011• NME: 14% down• Q: 12% down• Stool Pigeon and The Word have both shutdown• (US) Vibe will cease as a print publication atthe end of 2013 having been taken over bySpin Media. It will only exist in web format.
Why only online forRhymix• It is updatable and instant!• Audience can access it on mobile devices at any time• Audiences can interact with the content and artists• Audiences can contribute to the content e.g. polls, ratings,comments• Webpage can be more visually appealing and make for a moresensory experience, including photo galleries, watch videos,watch interviews, download or stream music.• Webpage caters for the ‘pick and mix’ audience who canselect the content they want to access via the navigation bar• Lower overhead costs – does not require printing, transportcosts, or losses if copies are not sold
Why only online forRhymix?• You can encourage online chat and give fans the chance to feel part of thecommunity who share the same music interests• Other interactive opportunities are available e.g. contributing to a blog, tweeting,submitting reviews, and their own music!• External web links can enable the user to connect with related sites includingsocial networks thus promoting the website at the same time• Internal links on the site give the user control and offer an element of choice• It is free for the user!• Webpages are extremely current and can be regularly updated – this will certainlyappeal to a young audience who are always online• By having specific genre advertising can be clearly targeted at a specificaudience which could generate more profit• You can also provide hyperlinks to advertisers websites which will bring moretraffic to their sites.
Why only online forRhymix?• An online magazine such a Rhymix where it caters fordifferent niche audiences can be very attractive toaudiences who can access a particular demographicrelated to the music genre. The advertising potential istherefore huge and includes web traffic referral foradvertisers as users click on the link provided in theadvert. The more closely linked the ad is to the possibleinterests of the audience, the more likely the advert is tosucceed and a possible purchase made.• Ofcom states that “…spending on internet advertising isnow greater than any other category of advertising”
Why only online forRhymix?• The fact that the webpages are genre specificmeans that the producers can introduce newartists to an audience who already have aninterest in that style of music. They thereforehave to work less hard to convince the audienceto listen to new artists. This can help unknownbands to gain attention• The webpage is highly interactive so theproducer can gain instant feedback from theaudience• You can have links to social media and build afollowing on sites such as Twitter or Youtube• Online magazines have the potential to attractand access a global market immediately at noextra cost.
Production – Key pointsfrom the letter• To provide independent and informed comment on themusic scene• Uncovering creative UK talent and supporting new artists• An updateable page to be developed on a chosen genre• Create opportunities for the fans to connect with artists
How to respond• Answer all questions in role e.g. Dear Rhymix• You can use headings and bullet points – for Q1you could make a new sub-heading for each pointthey give• You will be given an A3 sheet to draw yourwebpage• 22 minutes per question!