Dennis launches custom publishing group

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Dennis Publishing, the UK-based company behind The Week and a number of other magazines, has launched a custom publishing group, Dennis Communications.

The venture, an attempt to create new revenue sources for Dennis, will produce print and digital magazines. Dennis will provide all digital and print resources, including video, moving imagery and editorial, to custom printing clients.

“This is targeted at any company that sees digital communications as part of their CRM strategy,” said Tim Farthing, commercial director of Dennis Communications. “The video that we use as part of the editorial in digital magazines is quite important too, so most companies that use this project have some kind of video or flash movie featuring the product.”

The digital magazines will, for the most part, be e-mailed to customer databases owned by Dennis' clients. The Dennis Publishing database, containing 1 million e-mail addresses, will also be available for marketing purposes.

While digital editions are likely to form the bulk of Dennis Communications' work, the group is prepared to reverse publish print editions, or create print-only magazines, depending on clients' needs. Dennis is touting the benefits of digital magazines, though, pointing out online tracking capabilities and the ability to redesign magazines to appeal to different consumer groups.

The company produces editorial specifically for the digital magazines, with 30 or 40 words to a page, video, sound and moving images. Separate content is created for the print editions.

“Traditionally, the custom publishing market in England is all about printed magazines, and Dennis is a very big print publisher, so I'm not saying that Dennis Communications will only do digital magazines,” Farthing stated. “We love print, but we also want to help move custom pub into the 21st century.”

Dennis already has some experience with custom digital publishing: it created magazines for Ford and Sony's PlayStation last year and recently launched its own online magazine, Monkey. It also recently completed some global work for Smirnoff vodka.

Farthing said the company is not moving away from its traditional publishing roots. Rather, online publishing is seen as a new direction for growth, and the digital editions are considered complementary to print.

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