One trend that has continued throughout April has been the way that publishers are now creating magazines and apps for the Google Play (Android Phones and tablets) platform as well as for iOS (iPhones and iPads).
Cedar lead the way in making its Nikon Pro interactive tablet magazine available to Android users via the Play Store. The title, which has been available as a tablet edition for the iPad since 2011, showcases the best of Nikon photography from the print edition while integrating video, live weblinks, pushes to social media and more. There's more info here.
At the same time publishers continued to deliver enhanced versions of printed magazines on the iPad. Among those who made this move in April was FuturePlus, which unveiled an interactive version of Tesco's Technology & Entertainment magazine on Apple's Newsstand.
The magazine, which offers a mix of technology news and reviews of products, as well as updates on music and games, was created using the company's own FutureFolio interactive app creation solution.
There are more details here.
CMA Member news
CPL kicked off April by publishing the spring issue of RMProfessional, the magazine for the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) - the first issue that CPL has created for the institute. The magazine was redesigned to give it a modern, lively feel that CPL believes complements the quality of the content and reflects the Institute's growing global influence.
There's more here.
Also new from CPL this month was Impact, a magazine that examines the issues shaping the world of market research which is distributed to members of the Market Research Society (MRS). Designed by the company it is available in both print and online versions and published four times a year.
More details here.
Immediate Media Branded Content also unveiled a redesigned publication in the guise of Cineworld Magazine. The April issue boasted a stylish new makeover that was shaped by a reader survey and a creative review which were undertaken last year. The magazine is given away free at Cineworld's 80 cinemas in the UK and Ireland and is also available as an iPad edition - which is free from The App Store.
More details here.
August's big April news was the relaunch of Renault UK's online test-drive booking system, drive.renault.co.uk. The new look website has been warmly received by both consumers and the client. The step-by-step booking process already shows an uplift of 28% in visitors completing the journey to the final step, figures which prompted Renault's Manager, Brand Communications (Digital), Matt Lamprell, to say that he ‘looks forward to seeing this convert into increased sales.'
Throughout April the mainstream marketing press continued to write articles like this declaring that this is a boom time for content marketing.
However, as if to remind us that branded content is not a new thing and that CMA members have many years of experience of producing content, one title celebrated its 40 birthday. BA High Life, marked the occasion by chronicling the changing face of travel from 1973 to (with a spot of future-gazing) 2053.
It is the award season and, as you'd expect, several CMA members have had their pioneering and excellent work recognised.
Story Worldwide was named an Official Honoree by the prestigious Webby awards for its work across three brands. Story's work on Epica Wines was named a Webby Honoree in the Food & Beverage category, while its WGN America social media campaign for How I Met Your Mother and iPad book-app, Bats! Furry Fliers of the Night, both earned nominations in the Entertainment, Social Content and Marketing and Education & Reference categories respectively. There are more details here.
August staff members were shortlisted in the British Society of Magazine Editors' Rising Star Awards. Janetta Willis received a nod in the Best Subbing Team category, in recognition of her work on Kinleigh Folkard and Hayward's Completely London, while Giulia Galati was also shortlisted in the Best Picture Editor/Researcher category for her work on live for IKEA FAMILY, KFH's Completely London and Ocado SHOP. More here.
Meanwhile Progressive Customer Publishing (PCP) has received nominations for four PPA Awards. Even though the magazine has only been in existence for a year, economia, which is circulated to members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) scooped two nominations for its staff with Richard Cree up for Editor of the Year (Business Media) and Ewan Buck for Designer of the Year (Business Media).
PCP has also been shortlisted for Publishing Innovator of the Year (annual turnover under £10m).
In the contest for the Customer Magazine of the Year PCP got another nomination for economia. It does however face a strong challenge from three other CMA members. John Brown has been shortlisted for its Waitrose Kitchen magazine, while Think has got the nod for its Beer publication for The Campaign for Real Ale, which won the award last year and also in 2011. Also shortlisted is August Media for its Completely London magazine which it creates on behalf of estate agents Kinleigh, Folkard & Hayward.
Other interesting stories and milestones this month
In a report from GlobalWebIndex. - Digital 2013 - A Global Analysis of How Consumers Spend Their Media Time - the research organisation claims consumers are now spending more time with online media than they are with traditional forms of media.
It suggests that digital, including social media and mobile internet usage, now accounts for 57% of daily media time and that consumers now spend an average of 10.7 hours a day with all forms of media and 5.6 hours of that on digital. There's more here.
Also this month the CMA's content discovery partner Outbrain created a content marketing hub in the Guardian Media section. The CMA will be contributing feature articles to the hub that will help to further promote our industry and membership to the Guardian's media audience.
You can view the content hub here.
Our very own CEO Clare Hill has also been tackling an issue that many of our members have been pondering recently - what exactly is content marketing?
Clare reports that:
‘The CMA and its steering committee members have confirmed the content marketing industry definition as:
Content marketing is the discipline of creating quality branded editorial content across all media channels and platforms to deliver engaging relationships, consumer value and measurable success for brands.'
So why it important to have a definition? Well Clare thinks that it is about making sure that the CMA and its members own the content marketing space.
‘Whether it's PR agencies positioning themselves as content marketing agencies or the SEO sector adopting it to define itself, we need to ensure that we position ourselves not simply as industry leaders, but as the entire industry itself, using our expertise and knowledge to offer brands a valuable and effective content-marketing service.'
Clare also has an article in MediaTel which focuses on how the content marketing industry is evolving to keep pace with the digital revolution which is massively changing publishing.
And finally BuzzFeed, the viral-driven site that has amassed a huge following in the last two years recently debuted a UK version. In an article for Journalism.co.uk Sarah Marshall quizzes Andy Wiedlin, BuzzFeed's chief revenue officer, about the concept of social content marketing.
‘The BuzzFeed solution is to create shareable content for brands. The test is to ask ‘would you want to see this content in your Facebook feed?,' says Wiedlin.
A campaign for the Toyota Prius car, for example, highlighted the smaller size of the vehicle through a collection of pictures of bad parking.
This could well be something that content marketing agencies could explore to promote the websites they produce for clients. As with all BuzzFeed content the stories need to be visually arresting and viral - things that CMA members are already very adept at producing.