Wednesday , September 30 2020

Magazine Freak’s Advice: Don’t Suck

“Mr. Magazine,” Samir Husni, spends more than $4,000 per month on mags. I don’t know, $50k per year seems excessive:

    Samir Husni arrived in the USA from Lebanon in 1978.

    ”We had plenty of magazines in Lebanon, but when I arrived here, I was like a kid in a candy store,” says Husni, the oft-quoted and trademarked ”Mr. Magazine” who also is a University of Mississippi journalism professor and industry consultant.

    And over the past two decades, Husni told a group Friday in New York, the amount of sugar in the candy store has tripled: There are now 6,000 consumer magazines on every conceivable topic, compared with only 2,000 in 1980.

    ….It’s a brutal hit-and-miss world, he says; 60% of all new magazines don’t make it past one year (up from 50% a few years ago), and only 20% of all start-ups make it to age 4.

    ….”You have to ask yourselves, ‘What is my unique selling feature?’ People are asking, ‘What is in it for me?’ You have to be willing to create a product that the reader is willing to spend time with. Regardless of the delivery method, it’s the content that’s going to sell magazines.”

I remember reading the Whole Earth Catalog about 15 years ago, and Stewart Brand mentioned how he liked to go to the library once a month and browse through stacks of mags – he said he got a good feel for the zeitgeist and what stories were in the air on a horizontal plane; and vertically, he got a sense of how the various special interests and perspectives covered a given story.

Now you can stay home and do the same thing on the Internet, which is why ALL publications should have at least some content online: libraries are free and no one ever complained about them taking away sales.

About Eric Olsen

Career media professional and serial entrepreneur Eric Olsen flung himself into the paranormal world in 2012, creating the America's Most Haunted brand and co-authoring the award-winning America's Most Haunted book, published by Berkley/Penguin in Sept, 2014. Olsen is co-host of the nationally syndicated broadcast and Internet radio talk show After Hours AM; his entertaining and informative America's Most Haunted website and social media outlets are must-reads: [email protected], Facebook.com/amhaunted, Pinterest America's Most Haunted. Olsen is also guitarist/singer for popular and wildly eclectic Cleveland cover band The Props.

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