Top ten ideas from the Media Pioneers

The 2012 Media Pioneer Awards were presented on 24 May at the Specialist Media Show.  They recognise innovation and entrepreneurial spirit in niche consumer and b2b markets.  I’ve always found reviewing the entries really inspiring, with some great inventiveness shown by the very smallest publishers even on tiny budgets.  There’s plenty of inspiration for other niche media businesses – so here are my top ten clever ideas…

1. Loop Digital’s audacious move of dropping print altogether to focus on iPad apps, and discovering a new international market plus video advertorial revenues from global companies.  Their great strength was their video back catalogue.

2. Precious using paid live networking events and awards to build its online community, and taking web content to create books and a schools project.

3. Songlines, world music publisher, building up their facebook page with a sampler edition and using it to encourage voting in the Songlines Music Awards, with a 250% increase in votes.

4. Boat International, who work hard at their relationships with superyacht owners to obtain exclusive content, support for their superyacht awards, and have developed a video production team to help owners promote yacht charters and sales.

5. Singletrack, who have invested in print production values to court subscribers, and given them a valuable package including digital access and retailer discounts.  Plus they have enlisted specialist retailers to help them sell subs.

6. Windpower  Intelligence, who organized their databases of windpower plans and installations to create a subscription service that generated over £100k revenue

7. David Hall Publications, who took all their mags onto iPad, discovered that their smallest mag sold best internationally, and have now launched a digital only mag, Total Angling.

8. Citywire, financial publisher, who employs an audience development team to meet readers  worldwide and designs new types of events and conferences to meet their needs, plus provides advertisers with hot leads from relevant online stories.

9. Mollie Makes, who started by building an online community using social media and then launched their print magazine, using the content from the community for editorial.

10. Peach Business Tracker, who used their industry relationships to launch a research tracker that is now used by major brands to monitor and plan their business – and attracts sponsorship.

Read more about the final winners and who was highly commended on the day here

Nominate your specialist media business for the 2013 Media Pioneer Awards by contacting us direct.

About the author: Carolyn Morgan works with niche media businesses on their digital publishing and marketing strategy, through consulting firm Penmaen Media.Carolyn regularly writes for media trade press and speaks at conferences on the challenges of digital publishing.  She also runs the Specialist Media Show, a conference, exhibition and workshop programme for niche publishers.  Carolyn moderates the Specialist Media Network on LinkedIn, a community of over 1100 niche publishers who swap ideas and contacts. Request to join here.