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Old 06-07-2014, 11:35 AM   #61
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I've never even see their door...
Their physical presence is the stack of magazines in the waiting room of every brokerage and marine business that has a door open to customers.

The "door" is open to advertisers whose products will be seen by people who were not looking for them and doidn't have to make a mental choice and a take physical action to see them.

The B2B and trade mags are invaluable to those of us who make the decisions on what to buy and from whom. The model you are talking about is the traditional consumer mass market one that many boating pubs and most of their online wannabe competitors are trying to reinvent. PM at least has seen the weakness in that model but so far does not have the kind of market that makes the publications in the links I provided so very successful.

I see more online wannabe "publishers" fading away than focused and professional print media. One of the reasons is that none of them pay writers enough to get quality. They seem to act like sailors; the wind is free so why should they pay for anything? Even print mags like PM don't pay enough to cover the taxes on what a writer gets for the same word count from the ones that will survive.

The old saying that "if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys" is fairly accurate. It looks like PM shook the tree. Let's see how they do from here.
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Old 06-07-2014, 11:39 AM   #62
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The question here, Mark, is, do you read them? If you do, the goal of reaching a potential client for the advertisers has been reached. I can assure you, copies of Sea, or Yachting, are not being delivered to people listing 'crocheting' or 'motorcycling' as their interests.
There's actually a lot of study and science that goes into selecting you as a recipient of these magazines.
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Old 06-07-2014, 11:41 AM   #63
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Excellent comments Rick B. I see you understand the print media much better than most.
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Old 06-07-2014, 12:03 PM   #64
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The question here, Mark, is, do you read them?
Sea is of some interest because it has articles about U.S. Pacific Coast boating. Yachting is pretty much a throwaway because it focuses on a type of boating (mega-yachts) I'm not interested in. I wouldn't pay to subscribe to either.

I sometimes go out of my way to my marina's office or the West Marine store a mile from my house to pick up the free local handout magazines such as Latitude 38.
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Old 06-07-2014, 12:10 PM   #65
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I wouldn't pay to subscribe to either.
That is one circulation model however, and used by many publishers. Provided you pick your target audience well, it's certainly valid. As for remarks that it just bulks up the numbers, circulation audits are required to show the different 'types' of circulation and the ad agencies who purchase advertising are well aware of how much is bulk, how much is targeted and how much is delivered direct.
There are no secrets here, despite what some claim. Everyone knows what they're getting in the ad buy.
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Old 06-07-2014, 12:55 PM   #66
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............. I'd much rather read the true findings of people out who are out here because, well, that's what matters. .........
One has to go no further than the Active Captain reviews to realize that a good portion of the population are idiots!

An example that sticks in my mind is someone who gave an anchorage bad marks because no local marina would let him land his dinghy and take a shower for $2.00.
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Old 06-07-2014, 01:08 PM   #67
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.............., there are many, many stories to be heard in this industry about how Active Captain actually will place a competitor's advertising directly beside the name of a marina who chooses not to advertise.
I have heard the word 'extortion' used by people, quite credible people whose names all of us know, discussing this. So perhaps Jeff needs to reconsider his take on advertising, and all of us need to recognize that Active Captain has a dog in this fight, and consider his comments in that light.
Jeff makes the comment about how much gear is given away to magazines by companies seeking a good review. That's true - but really, Jeff - do you expect us to believe that you paid for every single piece of gear on your boat, that none of it was given to you by the manufacturer? Or that you don't think of those companies more favourably?
Really?
Yes, Jeff has a pretty strong opinion on magazines and advertising, but at the same time, that's how his business is supported.

Besides, advertising is not all bad. It's how manufacturers and vendors let potential customers know what they have to offer. How else would you find out about the new widget that can make life easier for you?
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Old 06-07-2014, 01:19 PM   #68
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Besides, advertising is not all bad.
Having made a good living from advertising sales, I heartily agree! There are studies showing that one of the three top reasons people purchase magazines and newspapers is FOR the adverts. People recognize that they can inform themselves about potential purchases in this way.
And advertising makes no pretence of what it is and does - it's a rah rah game for the product or service. We all know that and we discount it accordingly. It's when people lie or cheat or otherwise misuse advertising to present a false narrative or picture that causes the problems.
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:01 PM   #69
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:17 PM   #70
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Just as it was getting interesting Seriously, mods, I'm impressed with how you handle this sort of thing, a lot of forums could learn from you.
For those curious about Steve d'Antonio and his competency, it might be instructive to read the recommendations on his website, Steve D'Antonio - Marine Consulting Services for Boat Buyers, Boat Owners, and Manufacturers
I dislike the kinds of passive aggressive attacks I've seen against the man, which are the M.O. of some people. I don't know Steve, I've never met him, but I just had a conversation with him on the phone in which he indicated he was aware of this thread and had chosen, given who was involved, to not respond to it.
I applaud him for that - he's a better man than I. I cannot stand bullies and always speak out against them.
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:30 PM   #71
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I agree that the best way to glean information on product or service quality is by wading through customer reviews. Vendors can no longer hide their crappy products, or at least it's much harder to. AC is great at providing that sort of customer reviews for marinas. Angie's list does it for contractors, etc. etc.

But there are other aspects to publications beyond product and service reviews. Things like tutorials on various topics like bonding systems, battery charging, blister repairs, etc.. AC will never help you with that. Steve D has and continues to, though it's admittedly geared towards a consumer market, not a professional boat builder. But it's still useful. And publications tend to be better, though far from perfect, at providing basic name rank and serial number information on products and services. This is a big part of a boat review - just factual "what is it" sort of info. This type of info I think is week in AC. Facility details, services, etc are often incorrect, and pricing info is almost never correct. Quality for such info cannot depend of crowd sourcing, but has to be done by dedicated researchers/investigators, just as a writer needs to get all the boat details right in their review. And the same is true for cruising destinations. What's there, and why would you want to go there. A magazine article typically does a good job of that, where AC doesn't provide it at all. It will tell you what's next door to the XYZ marina in VKL town, but gives no insight into why you might want to visit that town, or that part of the world in the first place.

So, though I love AC, and love widespread customer reviews of products and services, it's not a total replacement for publications by any means.

And for advertising, pretty much all web sites are supported by advertising. The web is a marketeers wet dream come true. The symbiotic/parasitic relationship between publishers and advertising, whether it's in print, radio, tv, ipad apps, ebooks, web sites, Active Captain, or trawler forum is here to stay. I think success comes to those who balancing it all well. Google search I think does an exceptional job of providing value to the person searching, and obviously making ungodly amounts of money off advertising. TF's sister publication, Cruisers Forum, I think is at the other end of the spectrum, and I finally left and shut down my account because I couldn't take it anymore, even with an ad-blocker installed. I expect TF will go the same route once traffic reaches some level of critical mass, but until then we can continue to enjoy it.
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:34 PM   #72
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....... I agree that the best way to glean information on product or service quality is by wading through customer reviews.........
Again, you have to take into account the person who writes the review and their qualifications to evaluate the product. Look at the person who installs a product incorrectly and then writes a bad review of the product because it doesn't work as it's supposed to work.

Also remember that people who are dissatisfied with a product or service are the ones who complain and write bad reviews. People who are satisfied often don't bother.
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:40 PM   #73
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Excellent points, Twistedtree. Like in all things, whether it be AC or Passagemaker, or SAIL and Waterway Guides, for whom I write, no one source can be all things to all persons, even though some try to pretend that's the way it is.
Quite frankly, that attitude lead to a loss of credibility as people discover it t'ain't so!'
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:40 PM   #74
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Again, you have to take into account the person who writes the review and their qualifications to evaluate the product. Look at the person who installs a product incorrectly and then writes a bad review of the product because it doesn't work as it's supposed to work.

Also remember that people who are dissatisfied with a product or service are the ones who complain and write bad reviews. People who are satisfied often don't bother.
Yes, absolutely agree. That's the "wading through" part. Lots have to be dismissed for various reasons, but I agree that trends become pretty clear pretty quickly.

There's an important truism in marketing:

If a vendor/manufacturer tells you something they are lying.

If a consultant tells you something, they have been biased by the vendors.

If a customer tells you something, it's probably true, at least from their perspective.
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Old 06-07-2014, 03:47 PM   #75
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...at least, TT, you didn't include a comment about writers in that...I can just imagine what SOME folks might say about that
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Old 06-07-2014, 04:18 PM   #76
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I expect TF will go the same route once traffic reaches some level of critical mass, but until then we can continue to enjoy it.


Boy I sure hope it doesn't. But if it does I will be on the first bus outta here myself

EDIT And Canuck, everybody "knows" writers are liars
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Old 06-07-2014, 04:19 PM   #77
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Wow ... go away for a few hours and miss all the fun. What's all the fuss about? Who said what and whose ox got gored?
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Old 06-07-2014, 04:23 PM   #78
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Wow ... go away for a few hours and miss all the fun. What's all the fuss about? Who said what and whose ox got gored?
Hey, it wasn't you for a change
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Old 06-07-2014, 04:26 PM   #79
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@ CPseudonym....only boating writers...oh, wait! Let me edit that...
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Old 06-07-2014, 04:35 PM   #80
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Hey, it wasn't you for a change
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