City and Regional Magazine Publishers Using Mobile Apps

Members of the City and Regional Magazine Association are growing their respective use of mobile apps as an added real-time extension to each participating magazine’s print messaging and influence.

Dining, entertainment, attractions, nightlife, accommodations, shopping, and local sightseeing, as well as the ‘best of,” are among the many categories at the real-time fingertips of both visitor and local iPhone users.
“Many of our association’s members are offering their readers the opportunity to engage with their respective magazines anywhere, any time; providing well-researched and accurate information covering the full gambit of products, services and events available in their respective communities,” explained C. James Dowden, CRMA’s Executive Director.
In addition to iPhone mobile apps, publications like D Magazine are reaching out beyond iPhones into the bigger world of mobile web app providers.
“We realized early on in the mobile app process that when you’re serving a community as big as a city, you can’t focus on one platform and expect to hit the majority…to advance our reach we are expanding into the wider world of mobile web app providers,” explains, Jennifer Erwin, D Magazine Publisher.
“We’ll be able to provide nearly the same rich experience as within an iPhone App, but via the browser across the majority of smartphones.” Erwin added, “Not to mention the fact that we won’t have to deal with lengthy approval processes – or be beholden to any of the providers’ terms – expanding to more mobile web apps also means we can develop these completely in house with our current team…Long term, we’ll be able to react quicker with better mobile products and serve a greater number of users. It’s a win all around.”
New Orleans Magazine has been utilizing mobile Apps for four months now….the app is from CRMA associate member, Godengo, and is tied to the publication’s website,” said Todd Matherne, CEO/Publisher. “We offer ads on the apps and promote with print ads as an added value to our buys…we are still experimenting with ways to increase even more value to our advertisers…and the increased use of mobile applications, is part of that expansion,” added Matherne.
New York’s Buffalo Spree Magazine, is currently working with Zinio, their digital publisher and associate member of CRMA, to get Buffalo Spree digital on the iPhone/pad/touch up and running. “We’re also working with Godengo (on-line publisher) that is developing a mobile version of Buffalo Spree’s website…with the implementation of these two initiatives, we’ll soon be joining the ranks of the growing mobile community,” said Matthew Cirillo, Director of Information Technology for Buffalo Spree Publishing.
Honolulu Magazine publisher, Alyson Helwagen, said their app, developed with Godengo, basically delivers information from their website via an app rather than a browser. “We have maybe 2,000 downloads, which is a lot since we’ve done nothing to promote it — people are just finding it in the iTunes store, explained Helwagen. “We’re still refining, and haven’t done much promoting; we’re waiting until we have the product fine-tuned…We do have a digital edition on sale on the Honolulu site that allows users to read the magazine in any browser, or on any tablet or phone. We’ve been promoting that heavily online, a little bit in print,” added Helwagen.
“As with these magazines – and other titles in various stages of app development – the hands-on convenience of various mobile apps, ultimately provides immediate gratification for consumers making daily and immediate decisions about where to go and what to buy. Their continued and expanded use is projected to increase throughout the CRMA membership, offering both advertisers and users maximum benefit,” stressed, Dowden.

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