|This afternoon we finished putting the April ’09 issue of Sea Kayaker to bed. In the few minutes I had of post print-deadline relaxation—which of course, left me under the gun for the e-newsletter deadline—I was having a discussion with a co-worker about addressing the paddlesports trade associations in this edition.
All right, I’ll be honest: I was pitching my boss on a controversial topic and he pointed out that Sea Kayaker is a consumer publication, so what interest do consumers have in industry topics? Well, I’d have to agree with him, but it does open up a much broader question: What type of publication is Sea Kayaker? Our next issue will mark our 25th anniversary and I think it’s a good time to consider the question. The people I talk to have varying opinions that range from a consumer publication, a technical publication, an educational publication, to a mix of all three.
If I were reading one of our narrative pieces there’s no doubt in my mind that we would be considered a consumer publication. Reading one of our reviews, most notably the kayak reviews with technical specifications, certainly leaves no question about our standing as a technical publication (Our kayak reviews actually do influence boat design). However, in reading an article on paddling safety I am left with the thought that we have the essential elements of an educational publication.
- A consumer publication is something people read for enjoyment.
- A technical publication gives in-depth knowledge on specific products/topics.
- An educational publication provides continuing education on a given subject.
So, as we are entering our 25th year, I’ll leave the question to you, our readers. Please go to the Sea Kayaker online forum to share your opinion and comments.
I’ll be participating in the discussion and if I find any memorable quotations I can use in next year’s media kit, I’ll make sure to credit you and reward you properly, so on to fame and fortune!