Warning: This post rambles on a bit about custom publishing before finally getting to the point of asking someone from the UK (Martin Stabe, are you out there?) to translate some English into American for me. But first, the rambling part.
In the U.S., the company I run is referred to as a “custom publishing” or “custom media” company.
In the UK, such a firm is called a “customer publishing” company or, sometimes, a “publishing agency.” So, I’ve grown to accept that in my small niche of the media world, in the UK and US, we often say different things that actually mean the same thing.
Customer publishing companies or custom media agencies are marketing services companies that provide a wide array of outsourced services and products for marketers and other communicators at companies or associations who want to create and manage on-going (recurring) media (magazines, online media [podcasts, video], email newsletters, wikis, etc.) that will help them develop closer, deeper and longer relationships with people known as customers or members (we typically call them readers or viewers or participants, as well).
In many ways, our firm operates like a custom media “agency” on behalf of our clients. And, more-and-more often, our clients are other media companies who want to outsource to us aspects of editorial or production processes.
I say all that because I’ve been instrumental over the years in trying to raise the visibility of the entire notion that companies like mine exist in the U.S. — independent media “agencies” or divisions of giant media companies — that are “custom publishers — or custom media” providers.
In the UK, the notion of “customer publishing” is more universally understood by publishers, marketers, journalists and readers. As I said, in the UK, they call it “customer publishing” a term that never caught on in the U.S., because, well, those of us who started the Custom Publishing Council didn’t want to limit our market universe to those who had only “customers” when a lot of our work was focused on publishing magazines for clients who have readers with names like: members, alumni, patients, employees, supporters, donors, passengers, etc. It’s sort of like back when a former head of the IRS wanted to start calling tax-payers “customers.” The designation just didn’t work.
Sorry for all that rambling on the way to getting to the following question:
Today, in The Guardian, there is an article about Dennis Publishing starting a customer publishing “arm” that includes this quote:
“Dennis Publishing is to launch a customer publishing arm under the creative watch of former Maxim editor Derek Harbinson to produce print and digital magazines for businesses in a bid to create new revenue streams. The new subsidiary, Dennis Communications, which will sit alongside the firm’s traditional consumer publishing division and focus on producing traditional print and digital customer magazines, which will offer bespoke video footage, moving imagery and editorial.
I followed that all the way to the part where it says “will offer bespoke video footage, moving imagery…”
As I know there are a few UK media-types who occasionally tune into my RSS feed, I’m wondering if any of you could translate that phrase “bespoke video footage and moving imagery” into American.