The Popularity of Special Interest Magazines in Libraries: A Chat with UK Publisher Immediate Media

Library Resources | September 18, 2019

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Immediate Media is a UK-based publisher offering a wide variety of special interest magazines that resonate with readers around the world. Learn why they partnered with EBSCO’s digital magazine newsstand, Flipster®.

Variety is the spice of life and it’s also the spice of a well-rounded digital magazine collection. Immediate Media is a publisher, content specialist and platform company that is dedicated to bringing engaging content to readers of all ages. Popular magazines such as Gardens Illustrated, olive, Cycling Plus and many more are available digitally to libraries on Flipster®, EBSCO’s digital magazine newsstand.

We asked Immediate Media representatives about the importance of special interest magazines in today’s libraries, which topics are planned for future issues and why the magazine partnered with EBSCO to bring its content to libraries digitally through the Flipster platform. Here’s what they had to say:

What is the mission/goal of Immediate Media magazines?

Immediate Media is the specialist content and platform company. Our business is centered around three words — content, passion and engagement. We seek out audiences that are passionate about special interest topics, and we provide them with engaging content in whichever medium is most appropriate for their needs.

Immediate Magazines is a UK-based publisher, but your content sells quite well around the world. How do you stay relevant to a wide range of readers?

We have teams of brilliant editors who know their subjects inside out, and they keep on top of trends throughout their areas, national and international.

Immediate Media is described as a multi-platform media business. Can you explain what that means?

It means not being tied to any one medium for delivering our content, but rather providing it to our audience in the format that they find most appropriate, whether that be in print, online, digital, or at a live event.

From your unique vantage point, can you describe how the magazine industry has changed over the past five-ten years?

Well, there’s been a lot of pressure in the print newsstand magazine market, but a lot of opportunity in other media, so that has meant all magazine publishers have widened the channels that they publish into.

How is Immediate Media keeping up with the ever-changing landscape of technology and the use of magazines by consumers?

We have teams of online and digital specialists who are well set to respond, or more likely to predict the changing technology landscape. We’ve invested heavily in our technological platforms to enable us to quickly react to whatever appears, and to have the maximum flexibility in the way we deliver our content.

Since your magazine content covers a wide variety of topics, hobbies and interests, do you see any seasonal trends?

Every special interest area has its own peaks and troughs of interest. For example, in the history market, the impact is less seasonal and more anniversary-led, so we keep a close eye on the big anniversaries that are on the horizon and make sure that our content delivers on the customer need to commemorate those dates.

What are the top three most popular subjects/fields?

To continue with the history example, right now there is a big interest in Victorian history globally, but medieval and Tudor history is perennially popular, as is anything to do with the royal family, and indeed military history.

Do you see subject trends by age?

Sometimes, but we work hard to make sure that our content is well-pitched to the audience we are targeting.

How can public libraries and library patrons benefit from having access to special interest magazines?

Our content can be used as a source of reference for people researching or with a general interest in a specific topic, from features from world-renowned historians, to the latest scientific developments and thinking.

How do you see schools using Immediate Media magazines at their institutions? Are they used for leisure reading or in the classroom?

Yes, we hear a lot about educational usage of our titles, and we regularly correspond with teachers about the value they find from using our publications as direct teaching resources and for leisure reading for their students.

Do you see colleges and universities benefiting from incorporating Immediate Media magazines into their libraries and in classroom courses? And if so, how?

Absolutely. Many of our titles are very appropriate to colleges and universities. We aim to make sure that the content we are providing is authoritative, trustworthy, credible and relevant — this applies across a range of subject interests, from history, science, wildlife, music and astronomy — and these are values that transfer directly into classroom courses.

Are there any unique or popular subjects and/or trends that can readers expect to read about in future magazines?

We’ll certainly be following the stories that are being discussed in the national and international conversation, so expect to see a lot about plastic pollution, climate change, social inequality and political upheavals. There is a lot to talk about.

Why do you think that EBSCO is a strong partner to help distribute Immediate Media magazines to libraries around the world digitally via Flipster?

EBSCO is a great partner due to the global reach they provide across the institutional market, along with their in-depth understanding of how the different institutions select content and consume it.

If your library is interested in offering digital magazines from Immediate Media, it’s easy to get started. Simply request a free trial of Flipster, EBSCO’s digital magazine newsstand, and gain immediate access to this publication, as well as access to more than 1,400 other popular magazines.

Already subscribe to Flipster? Add Immediate Media magazine to your existing collection using EBSCOhost Collection Manager (the easiest way to manage your library's e-book, audiobook and digital magazine collections.)

Request Free Trial

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