Why can’t we have an environmentally sustainable magazine wrap!?

Organisations that have taken up the campaign to ban single use plastics are increasingly filling their publications with great articles on their sustainability policy, ethical travel holidays and programmes to clear the oceans of plastic waste. Great articles printed on recycled or FSC approved stock using vegetable inks all serve to promote the organisations’ sustainability ethics – but all too often ignore the fossil-based polyethylene (PE) or polypropylene (PP) wrap the magazine gets posted in or is displayed within on the newsstand.

This irony has not been missed by the team at Legacy Sport Media, who have been trying to find an economic alternative to the industry standard PE wrap used on most mailing lines. Some organisations claim their poly wrap to be ‘recyclable’ but in reality it is not accepted by most household recycling schemes and needs to be taken to a special carrier bag recycling collection point.
Recently mailing house Bakergoodchild developed a ‘100%-compostable wrap material’ made from starches derived from potato products, including waste form the food industry. They claim it contains no oil-based material, plastic or harmful toxins, making it eligible for EU certification. A well know ethical travel company has recently taken it up as well as a couple of campaigning membership associations keen to prove their Green credentials. Excited by the possibilities of this new wrap, the Legacy Team delved into the claims and process more deeply, only to find the alternative to PE & PP wrap is not only highly expensive but has several environmental pros and cons.

The latest PPA guidelines on the subject state: ‘Starch-based films are biodegradable and may also be compostable, but they are not recyclable. If starch-based films are used, these should be clearly marked as biodegradable and/or compostable as appropriate. These materials are not wanted in the recycling stream as they can have a negative impact on the recycled product. It is also very important to note that, in order to achieve the properties necessary for a selected application, many starch-based films incorporate biodegradable/compostable fossil-based petro-chemicals, often in high proportions. Whilst these non-bio-based ingredients to not affect biodegradability of the films, some of these can have a very high fossil carbon impact during production and will also release fossil carbon to the atmosphere at end-of-life. Thus, there may be a trade-off between biodegradability and carbon impact to consider. This could be particularly true of materials are home composted in poor composting conditions, which could lead to emissions of methane, a greenhouse gas with a high global warming potential. ‘*

Legacy Sport Media has been challenging paper mills and packaging producers to come up with a recyclable paper based option to meet the growing demand for a truly environmental alternative – not just a trendy green sounding solution that is potentially more harmful to the planet.

The European recycling rate for paper is over 72% with a goal of 74% by 2020, making it one of the most recycled products in the world. Maybe this is why organisations that do their environmental homework carefully are no looking for paper wrapping and smaller mailings returning to envelopes – with labeling to encourage recycling.

‘Digital is the answer’ – I hear you cry! With GDPR in place it is now all too easy to unsubscribe permanently from marketing brochures and membership managers will tell you their research proves that the association’s print magazine is often the only tangible benefit members can identify.

Let us all think more about the complete printed package and urge more paper producers to come up with a viable solution that eco-minded organisations can really shout about.

* Professional Publishers Association Magazine Plastic Wrapping Guidelines, July 2018.

Should you take your editorial in-house or not?

Help with making the editorial decision

Should you handle editorial in-house?

I recently met with a client who was looking to overhaul their somewhat dated membership magazine and who were faced with the question of whether to take the editorial out of house or not. With many NGB’s and membership associations facing reduced funding, freeing up valuable staff budget for other roles can be an attractive option for the Board. Commercial and membership managers are now required to cover a multitude of roles, some of which may be more financially pressing than chasing copy for the member’s magazine.
To these multi-tasking officers finding an agency that can take over the editorial headache can seem appealing, but at what cost? Obviously it depends on what the provider is offering – a specialist editor with in-depth knowledge of the subject area could be the perfect solution but depending on the frequency of the title this may not be a fulltime role for them, in which case their availability may be limited to just a few weeks in the magazine cycle.

Whilst handing over the job to a more qualified and experienced expert might appear the best solution, in reality much of the copy chasing and info gathering is often more efficiently (and cheaply), handled in-house. Somehow colleagues find it easier to prevaricate and put off writing articles when a stranger is chasing them – not so easy when someone is standing at the end of their desk! Conscientious staff members can also be wary of speaking with agency writers, concerned about being ‘on message’ and indeed exactly what the organisation message is that week.

‘But we don’t have anyone with the time or ability to edit the magazine’, I hear you cry. Possibly not, but a good agency will be able to work closely with a keen communications exec. to offer a guiding hand, check on house style and voice, spot sponsor branding issues and between them cover the ‘editor’ role. The editorial programme can be pre-planned with the membership/marketing/commercial director responsible for a year ahead and then regularly reviewed and adapted on a rolling 3-issue basis. This way the organisation can keep ownership and control of the content and more importantly be seen by the readership to be the true voice of the organisation.

This is not to say a freelance or agency supplied editor can’t do a great job for a membership organisation. Ideally with a strong interest in the magazine subject, a good editor will soon pick up the technicalities, jargon and brand style guide, and can be the perfect solution to an over stretched membership department. For organisations with a quarterly magazine this can be the perfect fit, as the frequency would not support employing a dedicated editor in-house.

One area to watch with any Editor who spends a long time in the role is that the title remains in touch with the grass roots membership – those that have just joined and those you are seeking to attract. It is a function of human nature that the more you learn about a subject, the more you become involved with it’s industry and the more press launches you get invited to – there is likely be an unconscious slide to polarise the magazine content towards the top end of the market, be that elite athletes, high end equipment or the most glamorous venues. This can apply to both staff editors and freelancers. If you recognise the symptoms do not be afraid to ‘refresh’ the editorial viewpoint.

Whichever path you take there will be a solution that works best for your organisation, and a good media agency should be able to offer you all the options to find the best fit to your specialist need. Legacy Sport Media can provide all these services and has the experience of working with many different client sizes and set-ups to be able to suggest what might fit best in your own situation.

John@legacysportmedia.com

Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre launches at WPNSA.

Paul Goodison MBE, Iain Percy OBE, Sir Ben Ainslie together with Hamish and Freddie Simpson open the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre

Paul Goodison MBE, Iain Percy OBE, Sir Ben Ainslie together with Hamish and Freddie Simpson open the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre

Weymouth 9th May 2014 – The Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation (ASSF) officially opened the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre today at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) with an emotional ceremony attended by Andrew’s family and friends, WPNSA Chief Executive Peter Allam and many other representatives of the British sailing community. The ribbon was cut by Andrew’s sons Hamish and Freddie, who were joined by Sir Ben Ainslie, Paul Goodison MBE and Iain Percy OBE.

“On behalf of the trustees of the Foundation, we’re really overwhelmed by the turnout today from friends and colleagues who knew Andrew. It was a tough decision to launch the centre on the 9th May, being a year today that we lost the great man, but we felt that is was another great opportunity to celebrate him. Not a time to reflect and be sad, but a chance to continue the great things that he did in his life,” said Iain Percy OBE.

“Today is a very poignant day, but also a really exciting one to be opening the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre,” said Sir Ben Ainslie. “I would like to say a huge thanks to the Trustees of the Foundation, for the all the efforts they have put in over the last 12 months, especially Leah and Iain for their vision and leadership to get us to this point; and all the volunteers that have helped us. We are starting our activity, including subsidising sailing sessions for children, on a local level, but want to partner with clubs from around the country with similar objectives; and ultimately do that on a global scale. It’s fantastic to see what has been achieved in such a short space of time; and I’m sure the great man would be very proud.”

Dedicated to the memory of Olympic sailor Andrew Simpson, who tragically lost his life in an accident while training in San Francisco Bay exactly a year ago, the new RYA accredited Centre aims to become a centre of sailing excellence, providing a sustainable Olympic legacy and helping the Foundation to fulfil its charitable objectives through the provision of a range of RYA sailing courses for young people, community organisations and adults.

Peter Allam, Chief Executive of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, sees the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre as a perfect fit alongside the other on site partners at WPNSA, delivering grass roots tuition right through to advanced race coaching for all age groups. “The Royal Yachting Association accredited centre will provide a focal point to remember Andrew Simpson’s outstanding achievements,” said Allam. “Andrew was passionate about inspiring people of all ages to take up sailing and the ASSC represents a tremendous opportunity to help provide a pathway from beginner through to whatever level individuals may aspire to, from recreational sailor to Olympic hopeful.”

R&R #76 – March 2014

Rowing & Regatta March 2014 contents spread

The March 2014 issue of Rowing & Regatta, produced and published by Legacy Sport Media on behalf of British Rowing, is out now – delivered on paper to members later this week, already live on iTunes for iPhone and iPad, also available on Android for mobiles and tablets, or online via your browser as Rowing & Regatta Digital.

This issue’s main cover stories are an ‘Explore Rowing’ recreational tour around Dorset’s Jurassic Coast with Pacific ocean rower Chris Martin, alongside an in-depth look at the psychology of winning (and losing!) the Boat Race as Martin Cross talks the blues to Matt Brittin, Sarah Winckless and Sir Matthew Pinsent…

Other headline features include the history of head racing with a profile of Head of the River Race founder and legendary coach Steve Fairbairn, teenage nutrition with GB Rowing Team nutritionist Jacqueline Birtwisle, Olympic champion Anna Watkins’ advice on scratch crews and rowing in bad weather, an interview with Italy’s Gianni Postiglione who coached Greece and Lithuania to unlikely success at London 2012, and a test on in-ear headphones for winter fitness training.

Plus a 2014/15 yearly wallplanner, Schools’ Head preview, news, letters, coaching, history, classifieds… More at www.britishrowing.org

R&R March 2014 cover

Digital editions – how to find the right solution for you.

With more companies and membership associations looking to reduce the cost of communicating with their clients and members, digital newsletters and magazines are a solution that many organisations are now turning to.

Increasingly we get asked to suggest which platform is best? The fact that there are a myriad of providers out there from completely free use options through to complicated subscriber only versions with full rights management suggests that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution.

The best answer is actually the question – ‘what do you need a digital edition to do for your intended readership?’ Every organisation will have a different answer, so you really need to focus on what job you need your digital magazine or newsletter to do.

Is it content you want to share with as many people as possible for free?

If this is the main driver then save your money on fancy digital editions and retain traffic to your own domain by embedding a PDF on your own servers, then promote the link as widely as possible.

Do you have premium members only content to distribute to paid subscribers?

In the case of membership associations or magazine subscribers, asking them to login onto a browser edition does not cut the mustard anymore. Why when I have paid for a subscription/membership should I have to go online to read it? I might want to read it on my tablet on the train and how do I know when the new issue is out?  Most membership managers say that they need to actively send their members each edition as a download straight to their inbox as a service their clients expect – otherwise you are just competing for attention from all the other direct mail bumpf that we receive these days.

 Is your content so exclusive that you don’t wish readers to pass it on freely to other users?

In this specialist area of premium, paid for content you need to ensure your chosen platform has effective rights management software that only allows the subscriber to access the information they have paid for. However, having to download it via a specialist reader can be a pain, especially when many corporate networks block such readers, so this choice can be counter productive to B2B information providers.

 Are you looking to switch existing print readers to a digital only edition?

If you are in this situation you need to find a really simple procedure to persuade clients to register for a digital edition. No one wants to lose readership and without an email address and a client opt-in this is the reality if you just stop the printed version. How to mange this migration needs careful planning and finding the right, easily useable platforms that all your existing readers can access will add to the user experience.

 Confused already?

It can be a challenging minefield if you don’t start by asking the important questions of what job you need the digital edition to do and how your market will want to read it. If you speak to a number of providers they will all have slightly different options and features others don’t – all adding to the confusion! The answer is to seek out the advice of an independent agency with expertise in the this field, such as Legacy Sport Media, who have experience from the very beginnings of digital magazines and understand the needs and concerns of organisations making this big step. Legacy Sport Media do not have the ‘one size fits all’ approach and seek to thoroughly understand their clients requirements before either building a bespoke system or advising the neatest off the peg solution to fit the specific project requirements.

 John Heyes is Publishing Director at Legacy Sport Media.

 

Digital Rowing Magazine & app

Digital Rowing Magazine & app

 

How to reduce the cost of your membership magazine distribution.

Whilst many national governing bodies are experiencing a post London 2012 bounce in their membership, an unwelcome side effect can be a corresponding rise in the cost of distributing their member’s magazine. Whilst some membership managers might think this a nice problem to have surprising few NGBs actually link their membership revenues to the communications budget, leaving the Comms teams struggling to fund the deficit. Too often the result is a cutback in either frequency or pagination or both – not the ideal solution for a newly engaged association member who you wish to anchor to the sport and stakeholders you wish to keep happy.

The good news is there are now some very cost effective and reliable alternatives to Royal Mail. Companies such as TNT and Asendia can offer savings of around 15% on UK deliveries and mail consolidation companies considerably more for overseas mailing. Whilst some providers still use Royal Mail’s services for the last mile and so their rates are subject to RM wholesale rates, TNT now has their own doorstep deliveries in London and several other cities, with the benefit of being trackable. Such providers obviously need minimum collection volumes to make it viable, but printers and publishers such as Legacy Sport Media now offer this as a service for their clients who can benefit from the savings negotiated from our combined mailing volumes.

The tough question some NGBs are currently grappling with is whether to ditch print copies completely and switch to a digital only magazine. The Royal Yachting Association recently surveyed members to ask if they would read a digital edition of RYA News, as posting 100,000+ copies quarterly is clearly a major investment. However, most communications and membership managers agree that if members are paying a subscription the most tangible benefit and reason for joining is the printed magazine they receive.

Digital editions can provide the answer to reducing overall mailing volumes for client groups who find it a more useful way to access the magazine. Students who frequently change address and juniors may prefer a digital solution that fits their lifestyle better. It can then be tailored with more specific content and made more interactive with links to social media sites and embedded rich media. This could well be an ideal solution for NGBs that currently print a youth version of the membership magazine as a supplement. Getting the members opt in after showing them the added benefits and maybe cost savings of a digital alternative are key here.

Some NGB’s are nervous of moving to a digital edition, as they are concerned about the impact on their existing ABC audit figure and the consequent impact on advertising revenues. Have no fear as the Audit Bureau of Circulation can now audit digital editions – but there are some hoops to jump through such as monitoring bounce backs and the usual criteria of proving delivery.

So make 2014 the time to act on your membership magazine offering – you can re-fresh the look and feel, make it more interactive and reduce the overall costs by reviewing how you distribute the content to each of your individual client groups.

 

Postman-using-boat-at-Wisbech-1

John Heyes is Publishing Director at Legacy Sport Media.

Legacy Sport Media supported sailor Allen Burrell captures 2013 Finn National Championships in Torbay.

British Finn National Championships 2013 prize giving ceremony.

Photo: Jean Border. www.borderphotos2010.com

Burrell, the acknowledged master in the breeze, overcame the tricky light airs conditions to win the prestigious title. He now adds his name to the illustrious trophy that dates back to 1956, alongside the great list of top British sailors – Vernon Stratton, Chris Law, David Howlett, Stuart Childerley, Iain Percy, Ben Ainslie and Giles Scott. Last year the event was a key part of the build up to the London 2012 Olympic Regatta and saw 84 boats battle it out in Falmouth Bay, with Giles Scott piping Ben Ainslie and Jonathan Lobert (FRA) to the top spot.

Allen had in fact won the National trophy two years previously at Christchurch, but was beaten by two overseas entrants in the British Open event and felt the title a little hollow. This time round Burrell said, “I am especially pleased to win the event outright on the water this time, ahead of all the international sailors too”.

The Championships attracted entries from all over the UK, Ireland, France, the Netherlands and Bulgaria. Marc Allain Des Beauvais, President of the French Finn Association put together a strong performance to finish 4th, behind the up-coming George Cooper (GBR) and Neil Robinson (GBR).

 

Start line at 2013 Finn UK National Championships

Photo: Jean Border www.borderphotos2010.com

Burrell’s result in the glorious hot and sunny conditions in Torbay rounded off a good regatta for the Legacy Sport Media team, as LSM Publishing Director John Heyes claimed 7th spot in the 38 boat fleet.

Full results at: www.rtyc.org/hosted2013/finn/finnnat2013os.html

Legacy sponsored sailor Allen Burrell claims 7th at 2013 Finn World Masters

Burrell in GBR 2, makes a clean start in the medal race.

Legacy Sport Media sponsored sailor Allen Burrell claims a top 10 spot in the highly competitive 2013 Finn World Masters. 

British sailor Burrell came 7th overall out of 285 contenders from 29 countries in the biggest Finn sailing event ever last week in La Rochelle, France.

The exciting medal race was held in an exhausting 25+ knot gusty wind in the mouth of the river, with a roaring tide and short waves. This was the first time the World Masters event has used the double scoring medal race format – last year’s championship planned to but a lack of wind curtailed it taking place.
‘It was tremendously exciting‘, said Allen, after the 10 boats were recall for an early start, ‘ it was really tense on the start line and pretty scary downwind in the huge gusts.’ The short windward/leeward course was held just off the harbour breakwater, where a crowd of spectators had clambered out along to view the spectacle. Burrell started well but was flagged by the on-the-water jury for a dubious port and starboard crossing with Dutchman Karel Van Hellemond which sent him to the back of the fleet after a penalty turn. Burrell staged a remarkable recovery on the short second upwind leg to claim 5th in the race and 7th overall, just ahead of French rival Laurent Hay.
Final results top 10

1 CZE 1 Michael MAIER 10 (1)
2 GER 711 Andre BUDZIEN 17 (3)
3 USA 505 Erik LIDECIS 20 (4)
4 LTU 7 Tauras RYMONIS 25 (5)
5 NED 41 Karel VAN HELLEMOND 34 (2)
6 GER 193 Thomas SCHMIDT 34 (8)
7 GBR 2 Allen BURRELL 38 (6)
8 FRA 75 Laurent HAY 38 (7)
9 DEN 80 Michael STAAL 47 (9)
10 GBR 42 Adrian BRUNTON 59 (10)

R&R #70 – May 2013

RR70_contents

The May 2013 issue of Rowing & Regatta, published by Legacy Sport Media on behalf of British Rowing, is out now! R&R #70 has increased to a 72-page issue, offering British Rowing members and digital subscribers even more great rowing content…

The latest big event was the GB Rowing Trials at Caversham, offering London 2012 veterans and new blood alike the chance to compete for seats in future GB boats. The big surprise being single sculler Charles Cousins’ victory over Alan Campbell – but R&R coverage delves deeper, providing analysis of the M1x as well as featuring up-and-coming ‘ones to watch’ embarking on their potential row to Rio!

Other headline features include an update on the renamed discipline of Para-Rowing, as Britain’s finest adaptive rowers vie for Paralympic class seats. The GBRow 2013 is an open sea challenge, with competitors setting off to race around Great Britain, and we introduce the contenders. Alongside the regular R&R coaching section, there’s a discussion of the relative merits of cross-training. Also in the interests of fitness, the third and final instalment of R&R’s rowing machine test pits the Oarsport Swingulator against the Oartec Simulator – which of the dynamic due will win out?

Plus there’s a report on the British Masters, 10 tips for Henley Regatta, ‘Hidden Depths’ meets a West Country chef and oarsman, and in the first of a new series of Event Guides we focus on Reading Amateur Regatta.

With the addition of news, letters, coaching, technique, nutrition, history, classifieds, a monthly calendar and more, there’s plenty to enjoy in May’s R&R. Check it out on iTunes for iPhone and iPad, also available on Android for mobiles and tablets, or online via your browser as Rowing & Regatta Digital.

More on British Rowing at www.britishrowing.org

RR70_ofc

BPA Sports Fest 2013 programme

BPA Sports Fest Sheffield covers

Legacy Sport Media’s latest publication for the British Paralympic Association is the programme for this weekend’s ParalympicsGB Sports Fest, which takes place  at the English Institute of Sport, Sheffield, 26-27 April 2013. Aimed at potential athletes who have been inspired by the London 2012 Paralympic Games, the British Paralympic Association’s ParalympicsGB Sports Fests are free events offering disabled people the chance to try out over 20 different sports, find out how to get involved, and meet some of our incredible Paralympic medal winners!

The 48-page programme includes a gatefold cover with schedules and floorplans, highlights of the 2012 Games with quotes from some of the stars, details of how to explore disability sport and find a local club, plus pages devoted to every one of the 25 Summer and Winter Paralympic disciplines. It has been a very rewarding job to work on, and we hope this and future Sports Fest events are a roaring success.

More from the British Paralympic Association at www.paralympics.org.uk and www.parasport.org.uk

BPA Sports Fest Sheffield