Tyler Brule keeps focus on Monocle

Monocle May 2009 - issue 23

Monocle May 2009 - issue 23

Tyler Brule has castigated newspapers for their lack of confidence in the face of the web onslaught. And according to a Times interview by Dan Sabbagh, he is showing them the way to go, with sales for his international monthly Monocle at 150,000. However, the piece fails to point out that this is the same figure quoted a year ago.

The strategy for ‘the ridiculously upmarket, black, perfect-bound monthly’ appears to be to find fans and then give them lots of ways to fill the magazine’s coffers – they can step into Monocle shops or pay extra as a subscriber or buy lots of branded products by post to demonstrate their continent-hopping lifestyles.  Newspapers, by contrast, fail to build on their ‘fan base’:

Compare this model with the way in which newspapers go about their business. Paying readers have a real emotional tie to the titles they buy – the fact newspapers are used for dating demonstrates that – but online the industry seems seduced by a different measure. The perpetual chase for monthly unique users makes the mistake of valuing each visitor equally, when Dorothy, a teenager from Kansas, reading a story about Britney found via Google News is not worth the same as Brendan from Brentwood who visits every day. And yet, all that is known about the loyal readers is their internet address, unless they have had the willpower to complete an online survey. It is daily unique vistors that really matter.

The piece exudes confidence on the part of Brule despite the stagnant sales. At least Monocle is still on the shelves while all around competing current affairs magazines are having a hard time – Conde Nast has closed Portfolio in the US and weekly Vanity Fair in Germany while Spectator Business has dropped its monthly frequency to quarterly.

Monocle launch and current affairs magazine

One Response to “Tyler Brule keeps focus on Monocle”

  1. Ferinannnd Says:

    Просто замечательно – очень интересные мысли

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