The only way to succeed in magazine publishing

Seth Godin quotes Michael Brooks, the publisher of Concrete Wave magazine. Among the nuggets:

“I am not publishing a magazine – I am helping to document and foster change within skateboarding. The magazine is part of a greater movement within skateboarding. Concrete Wave exists to spread specific ideas. The more people we can spread these ideas too, the more success we achieve…I am not merely building readers or subscribers – I am building a cult of supporters, each of whom will further support the cause and bring in more readers and subscribers.”

As I’ve said on this blog several times, the key to success in magazine publishing is to matter to the reader. And by “matter,” I mean be a magazine people can’t bring themselves to throw away. Brooks gets it, big time. Here’s a quote from a recent post on his blog:

“If information is free and you happen to be in the business of information (aka magazine publisher) then you better be offering up more than just information. Your magazine must not only reflect your readership, it must inspire them.

And, on the magazine’s website, perhaps the best-phrased goal I’ve ever read:

“Our goal is to publish a skate mag that is so good, you’ll want to put it in your will.”

I’ve never owned a skateboard in my life but he’s convinced me to subscribe.