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The Authority on Canada's Recreational Boating Industry

Message From The Editor

Boating Industry Canada's Newsweek

THE POWER OF BRANDING AND IMAGE

This past week we learned that Metroland Media Group Ltd. will no longer publish Boating Business, Boat Guide, Ports and their digital properties.

Although these were competing publications, their staff members were friends and colleagues. We have spent many years meeting at shows, dealer meetings and media events all over North America. We have travelled together and there has always been a spirit of cooperation among all the marine media businesses for the higher benefit of the boating industry generally. When we meet at events, there is a Canadian camaraderie that our American counterparts see clearly.

It's a small world. At one time, I served as the Editor of Boat Guide magazine and in my early days as a boating writer, I contributed stories to Boating Business magazine.

So, I'm saddened by this loss. Magazines are a particular and valuable media format because magazines can show high-resolution photos and can tell long-copy stories and present detailed technical articles. As popular as our own digital media properties are, newsletters typically tell shorter stories and deliver news.

For marketers, branding and image building advertising is still very important. Printed publications are very good at that and if consumers are not aware of your brand - if you don't have an image that enhances your value in the minds of consumers - your product becomes a commodity and price defaults to being the determining purchase factor - not a brand choice that merits a higher price.

If you are selling butter, eggs or all-purpose flour, you really are a commodity, but if you are selling a luxury lifestyle product like a boat, the emotional qualities and the implied lifestyle benefits that come across so clearly in a full-page magazine ad, or better yet, in feature editorial, really builds your brand and image.

Recently, I saw research showing that some of the biggest national brands were starting to put more ad budget back into television commercials for exactly those branding and image reasons.

For the long-term benefit of the industry, I hope marine advertisers continue to support magazines as a great way to build boating as an activity.

Andy Adams, Editor aadams@kerrwil.com Twitter YouTube

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