Late February, at the peak of winter, countless beauty brands, skincare organizations, pharma reps, marketers, scientists and an influx of media – both on the advertising and editorial side, head down to sunny Florida to share news, talk personal care and embrace the sun – safely, of course. This past week, account members at PadillaCRT attended the Personal Care
Products Council (PCPC) alongside the brand team from client, Coppertone. A long-lasting tradition, the PR and brand team collaborate to talk all things innovation with editors and publishers from media outlets. In turn, publishers discuss new opportunities to invest in their outlets and editors talk angles for upcoming stories, trends and insights.
While highly accredited leaders and council members in the personal care industry discuss scientific findings and attend a variety of panels, brands schedule one-on-one meetings with outlets as an opportunity for facetime with influential media. A true playground for sharing news, PCPC is an annual conference that is quite frankly deemed the “Super Bowl” of all meetings in the personal care industry. Did I mention many of the brand/publication meetings are poolside with an oceanfront view? Not a bad two days…
After returning from PCPC, the value of these meetings is unparalleled to any other industry event I’ve attended. In no other circumstance can I say I’ve truly gained many media insights during face-to-face conversations with countless beauty editors. We are given the opportunity to talk about Coppertone, brand marketers share news, our dermatologist discusses patient trends and editors test out products and ask questions. On the other end of the spectrum, we talk about the outlet, their news, trends, upcoming stories and ways we can partner. There is one takeaway that was mentioned by editors and publishers in every single one of our 33 meetings: going digital.
The push towards digital is at the forefront of media. Opportunities for paid/sponsored content or partnerships are available more than ever. We’ve heard it before, print media is dying. While I don’t think it will be dead anytime soon, I can say that in 2016, only the strong survive. According to Businessweek, digital is better. It has too many advantages: “ubiquity, speed, performance, search functions, the ability to update, remix, target, interact etc.” The list could go on and on. Or, it could simply be described in the image below via Rhetowriters.
The need for digital innovation was top-of-mind from each publication. Many outlets are integrating their publishing and editorial teams. They are hiring more digital editors to push content out in order to stay competitive in the constantly changing media landscape.
In Ad Week, Adam Rapoport, editor-in-chief at Bon Appétit, mentions that “the mediascape is so competitive and fractured these days, you can’t not be in sync with your publisher – across all channels.” And of course, there are a lot of channels. Magazines are no longer solely responsible for their print editions, they are running a 24-7 website, managing social channels, shooting videos, attending events, producing special issues, creating digital memes, etc. The list can continue but when it comes down to it, there are more players in the digital world than the print world and that will only continue to grow. So, what does this mean for print? Only time will tell. But, through conferences like PCPC, we are not only given insight as to what magazines are doing or planning to do digitally, but also what it can mean for brands – where should they think about investing dollars and how PR professionals can capitalize on it for clients. We do know that the digital game will only continue to grow and in this evolving media landscape, brands have to constantly transform and reinvent news to appeal to the masses.