Publishing During a Pandemic

Samir Husni, aka “Mr. Magazine”™, is the director of the Magazine Innovation Center at the University of Mississippi, School of Journalism, and the country’s leading authority on magazines, according to FORBES.

Recently, Mr. Magazine virtually sat down with GLC President and CEO, John Cimba, as well as Joe Stella, VP of Associations, and Shannon Cummins, VP of Healthcare, for his blog series: Publishing During a Pandemic.

They spoke candidly about quality content creation, shifting schedules, why print media is critical right now, and what keeps them up at night. An excerpt is below:

Joe Stella: The pressure that a lot of people are feeling about how and when to communicate might lead them down a wrong path and to make some decisions that may impact the overall perception of the organization especially if the communication strategy and the content itself isn’t executed well. So focus on what you do well, double down on those channels, don’t try to do too much. Everyone right now is in a reactive mode and is trying to master everything digitally, don’t be all over the place. Keep in mind that inboxes are full and digital communication is very overwhelming right now. Stay focused on what your mission is, own a channel, produce quality content, and your audience will stick with you through this time because they need you. And, they’ll need you afterward too because of the new lessons there will be to learn. Everybody is going to need to learn from each other during the “new normal.”

Shannon Cummins: My clients are all in the healthcare space, so they’re definitely feeling the impact [of COVID-19] directly. Many of our clients over the last several weeks have been involved in managing the communication and literally in the command center on a daily basis reporting on information to multiple audiences–internal, external, the media, to name a few. In some instances, for larger clients, it’s part of what they’re doing. For some of our smaller clients where maybe there’s one person managing all communications in marketing, they have shifted from their regular job to solely managing COVID-19 communications.

John Cimba: We can even go so far as to use a term we’ve used for years, which is that print is the Trojan Horse. It enters the home; it stays on the table; it’s there and around. It’s not a digital view – click, on to the next thing. So, there is an opportunity to stay in front of [your audience].

There’s an online clothing company called UNTUCKit and I get a kick out of it because every month I get their printed piece. This is an online company where you buy online. And what does the magazine do? It sits on our counter at home and I find myself looking through it, and ultimately, like today, I’m wearing something from them. Now more than ever, with so much digital noise everywhere, print is very valuable.

You can read the entire article here.

How is your organization publishing during this pandemic? Are you backing off or doubling down? We’d love to hear from you.