3 Reasons to Offer Short-Run Magazines
Short-run print magazines are the hidden communication advantage for large and small businesses. They can target micro-audiences, build and maintain brand awareness, and generate leads while enhancing thought leadership. Even the up-and-coming GenZ is a fan of print and reads magazines! Targeted short-run magazines are an option for every business, and they have longevity. If you walk into most offices, you will see a stack of magazines in the reception area. Even home-based businesses tend to have a pile of relevant magazines on hand.
This format can perform better than email and online magazines because it is tangible and visible. While online communication might reach more people, print has a higher rate of getting to the right people. Help your customers create targeted short-run magazines that give the same message to all recipients, get the same message, or take it up a notch and guide them to variable content projects that allow their customers to target constituencies by region, interest, or other criteria. Here are some examples:
Examples of Short-Run Printing Opportunities
- School systems serve elementary and secondary grades. They have different events, parent communication requirements, and messaging needs, so suggest they offer monthly or quarterly magazines targeted to each group. Work with your 4over team to find templates for 4, 8, or 16 pages to help customers build the perfect magazine.
- Consultancies in engineering, architecture, business practices, and healthcare have great stories to tell. Offer a quarterly magazine to highlight their practice and promote their case studies.
- Independent retailers work hard to serve their customers, so suggest they create a regular magazine to show their products and services, promote specials, and tell customer stories. Some grocery stores like to promote recipes from the neighborhoods they serve and the employees who help their customers, for example.
Three Marketing Requirements for Short-Run Printing
Talk to your customers about how to win with short-run magazines by focusing on these three of the top marketing requirements:
- Target Audiences: Help customers target all of their constituents. Magazines printed in short runs can speak to unique aspects of their top customer profiles in a way that tells the stories that matter to them.
- Build the Brand: From nail salons to restaurants, independent retailers, and business associations to schools and sports teams, every group has a story to tell. For some, once a year will be the perfect timing, but for others, the best option might be to follow the seasons. Because magazines are tangible, they will remain visible for a long time, building brand awareness every day.
- Generate Leads: Most entities aim to find new customers, participants, and like-minded people. The search for new customers is constant for all businesses. Short-run magazines are a great way to get in front of prospects! Pair them with a QR code to create a call to action in your interactive print magazine that encourages readers to visit a website, register for an event, sign up for a membership, or make a purchase.
Tips for Designing Short Run Magazines
Make it as easy as possible for customers by supplying templates. The team at 4over can help you find the best options to offer your customers, but if they are working with their own designer, make sure you provide the best guidance. The basics include:
- Use high-resolution images of at least 300 dpi resolution. Images copied from websites are often low-resolution to save on the time it takes to load the image to the screen, so avoid them.
- Consider how the company presents itself to the public. Some customers are design-rich with vibrant use of color, while others prefer muted palettes. The level of page saturation contributes to the cost of production and influences the types of paper available for production.
- Create a design guide to ensure consistency. Consider the primary and accent typefaces, a guide for the use of heading fonts, and the use of brand accents in the design.
These simple tips help designers understand the guardrails without constraining their project vision. Using templates to define page boundaries, unprintable areas, and other design elements will help create an efficient production process, but don’t forget to proofread! Whether your customers produce the content or contract freelancers to produce articles, encourage them to own that final step of proofing the text and design for every edition. Check out Print 101 for even more tips on magazine setup.
The Power of QR Codes
Another element to consider is print interactivity, as mentioned above. To create a closed-loop approach to marketing, lead generation, and brand engagement, consider the power of QR codes to link your print and online experiences. An article about a customer in the magazine could include a QR code that links to a web page describing products and services mentioned in the story. They can also link to membership pages and special offers. Work with your 4over team to understand your options and how to design to maximize visibility and scannability to grow your engagement.
Need more ideas? Talk to your team at 4over. They can show you all the options 4over has to offer, give you the help you need from finding the right products for your short-run magazine order, assist with your design needs, and ensure your order is successful from concept to delivery.