As anyone might well know, newspapers have been hit hard with the ever-increasing power and purpose of Internet-delivered information. Estimates range from 40 to 60 percent when it comes to delineating the extent of readership drop-off with printed newspapers in just the last five years.
And magazines aren’t faring much better. Newsweek is gone. Time is on the verge of running out. Fortune is suddenly a misfortune. The New Yorker, The Atlantic and Harper’s seem to be searching for the same reader, and he or she seems to be inco(mputer)gnito. Excepting Vogue, most general women’s fashion magazines are at the junction of do(something different)-or-die.
But while this might be perceived as depressing times for printing presses, there is a segment of the magazine publishing world that is thriving. That niche is “special interest” magazines with mission statements basically amounting to intensely knowledgeable narrow-mindedness as these extremely focused publications inventively sharpen their tact of sticking to a specific subject (whatever that might be from exotic cars to exotic birds).
With an added focus-layer of a controlled circulation, that is the position of 20/20 Magazine. That said, numerous times in these last 17 years, I’ve taken those to task complaining that 20/20 is just a frames book and just a sunglass sage. Only someone NOT reading any given issue could believe that perceived notion. In the last two years alone, we’ve nearly doubled our lens and technology coverage. Our presentation of CE (both in print and online) is completely unrivaled in optical. Signature MarketPulse (fueled by the extensive reach of Jobson Research) metrics in nearly every issue remains unique to the 20/20 brand.
AND… guess what? If you DO stand by your perception that 20/20 is JUST a frames book, you might well be aware that no one… NO ONE… romances eyewear and sunwear product with self-propelled photo shoots, extraordinarily advanced trendsetting and peerless socialEYEzing (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, ETC.) better than 20/20.
I’m truly proud of that. Style can be elusive. And leadership in that same style can be equally evasive. Might be boastful on my part but when it comes to specialEYEzing, 20/20 wrote the book… and… it’s a very successful book.
You might have already heard that in conjunction with 20/20’s 40th anniversary, we are being honored with the Accessories Council Hall of Fame award. My story on that opens this month’s Upfront. Give it a read and please try to join the celebration.
James J. Spina