The Digital Transformation - New Potentials for Trade Media

MEDIA The Vogel Business Media media company is in the midst of a process of change. Shifts in user habits and the demands of advertisers require, among other things, the development of business models outside the core business. The specialist media house Vogel Business Media is repositioning itself on the market.BY STEFAN EISELEIN*Vogel Business Media is a large, independent specialist media house, medium-sized, family-owned. With around 100 [...]

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The trade media house Vogel Business Media is repositioning itself on the market.FROM STEFAN EISELEIN*Bird Business Media is a large, independent, medium-sized, family-owned trade media company. With around 100 trade media, around 100 web portals and around 100 business events as well as numerous services, the company generates around 100 million euros annually. In Germany, Vogel produces at eight locations and has several international commitments, the oldest, by the way, being the one in Switzerland, which started in 1930. Today it has its headquarters in Thalwil near Zurich and bears the company name Vogel Business Media AG. Vogel has been active for a very long time in the four markets of industry, automotive, information technology and law, business, taxation and reaches around 10 million decision-makers per month in around 100 countries.Currently Vogel Business Media - like all other media houses - is undergoing major change and is in a transformation process from a specialist publisher to a multi-media knowledge and communication partner.What is the Big Picture? Where is the journey for specialist media houses heading? What role does the brand model play as a community organizer and what opportunities does big data in the form of smart data offer for data-driven business? Vogel Business Media has been constantly gathering experience with its Vogel Future Group since 2005, i.e. for many years. Good as well as not so good, and acts flexibly and dynamically on the findings.Why transformation? Why now and why so quickly?The reason for the transformation is the violent change in user habits, on the one hand. And the demands of advertisers, on the other. The example of Lukas, a student from the year 2020 and his digital rhizome, illustrates how the way of communication and knowledge and information transfer will change in the future. Functional and thematic topic clusters are emerging: personal and technical communication, automatic and research communication.Credible filter functions are becoming increasingly important. The virtual filter agent is individually configurable. Another driver for a strong change in the media and their business models and activities is reflected in the development of advertising revenues. While print ad sales of the trade press dropped sharply, Google's ad sales increased by about 50% in the same period. This reallocation of budgets in the communication budgets of advertisers and companies requires different communication offers. The goal remains the same: to access the players in the markets as directly and effectively as possible.The mission has three tasksThe three fields of action are firstly the further development of the core business, secondly the new development of business models outside the core business and thirdly the development of innovative products.a) Diversification of the advertising-financed business and b) Transformation of the user-financed business play an important role for the core business. For new products, needs analyses, elegant and uncomplicated idea management are just as important as external input from outside, for example through open innovation models.Six impulses for the core business- Contributed journalism to generate large coverage- Content curation to sharpen topic expertise and brand image- Data-driven journalism uses clever data sources for useful content- Native advertising is sponsor content in editorial garb- Customized media uses cross-media campaigns in networked media- Paid content opens up digital payment models with valuable contentFor this transformation process in media companies, change management is necessary that holistically captures the company and fully penetrates the identity core, the corporate culture. It is about a fundamental change from unidirectional communication to bidirectional dialogue, from the one-sided proclamation of the publishers to their readers to a custom-fit knowledge and information offer for the people in the markets, and this offer is based on direct dialogue, especially in social networks.The recommendations are:- don't reinvent everything yourself - use external inputs- clear prioritization- focus on the things you change- keep an eye on the utility- in the digital world: measure, measure, measure!Stefan Eiselein is head of the Vogel Future Group and member of the management board of Vogel Business Media.
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