Working for a newspaper, magazine or any type of print medium often brings about negative comments about the state of the print industry. “Print is dead” is a phrase often uttered by, well, everyone. But through my experience interning this summer, I have found the print is very much alive, just in a different way than we might have previously understood it.
I love reading an article in an actual newspaper or magazine, and I love reading an actual book. Yes, a book - not a Kindle or an iPad. I’ll be reading print publications until the day they die, and some will die out long before others.
This summer, I’ve had the honor of interning at two very different types of magazine publications: Time Out New York and The New York Enterprise Report. And I’ll tell you one thing: The print magazine produced by NYER will be around much longer than many might predict.
“Right now, our circulation goes up about 10 percent every year,” said Michelle Court, managing editor at The New York Enterprise Report. “It also helps that what we do helps people. It gives them advice, and it’s actually helpful to them as entrepreneurs and change their business.”
Court emphasized how NYER isn’t just a “hey, look how cool this is” type of magazine, as many are today. Those types of magazines will probably be pushed to digital-only soon, and as the editor of The Edge magazine, The Pendulum's general-interest magazine, these issues surround my thoughts constantly.
NYER, however, offers valuable small business advice that cannot be found in a print publication or on a website anywhere else in the New York City Metro Area. It’s the niche, specialized feel of the magazine, and the company overall, that allows for such impressive readership numbers, despite the staff of fewer than 10 people.
“We actually still have an opportunity to grow our print revenue,” said Robert Levin, CEO and publisher of The New York Enterprise. “But we are very attuned to the fact that we have to keep the best of it digital.”
Small businesses aren’t going anywhere, which is why the advice, tips and knowledge NYER offers to its 100,000 readers is coveted.
Along with the niche aspect of NYER, it also offers more platforms and services than solely a print magazine, which is why it has the potential to sustain its business. Before it had a print magazine, NYER started putting on business events, which it still has every few months for its readers and small business owners in the local New York area.
“I think a reason our audience likes us to much is that we truly help get ideas and solutions for their business,” Levin said, “and the reason for that is that most media companies use writers and reporters for its stories. We use experts. This is why our content is second to none.”
Events, a print magazine, a digital magazine and a website - you can’t just be an all-or-nothing company, and the NYER truly embraces this understanding. Flexibility is key. It’s this type of specialized, media company, rather than just a print publication, that will “survive the end” of the print publication altogether, and I’m happy to say that I’ve been a part of it.
Other than the fact that I’m getting some of the best work experience for after college, one of my biggest goals for the summer was to gain knowledge and skills that I would be able to bring back to The Edge. New York City offers the best of the best when it comes to magazine publishing, so I’ve learned a thing or two.
But the NYER, as a specialized media type of company, has prompted me to think about what The Edge really could be. I have considered various types of stories and features that I wouldn’t have thought of without it. I want to offer Elon students comprehensive coverage of ideas they should consider while in college, as well as solutions to problems that might arise.
The New York Enterprise Report provides small business owners with the tools they need to grow and strengthen their business, and I want to make The Edge something that helps college students enhance not only their overall college experience, but also how they might approach the problems of the world.