East West tours U.S. cities to grow readership

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To expand on its 20,000-circulation rate base, Asian-American lifestyle title East West magazine is focusing its strategic efforts on its Tour of Cities campaign.

The project hones in on a different market in each issue to increase presence on newsstands in that city and to grow readership. For example, East West has launched separate issues specific to New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.

"The publication is the only one of its kind that targets and speaks to American-born individuals of Eastern descent that are adapting to a life in which two cultures merge on a daily basis," said Anita Malik, editor in chief of east west, Scottsdale, AZ.

Targeting educated professionals between the ages of 25 and 50, as well as those who are intrigued by an East West perspective, the title is looking to make the jump from publishing six times a year to publishing monthly next year.

The magazine is also working on an e-mail campaign to acquire new subscribers.

"The call to action will be 'Get to Know East West at No Cost,'" Ms. Malik said. "This will direct them to our Web site to sign up for one issue free."

New subscribers will also be offered a reduced two-year rate if they decide to stick with the publication after the trial issue. The two-year rate costs $24. The regular two-year cost is $29.50.

The e-mail blasts will go out to a list of Asian Americans who have purchased magazine subscriptions in the last year in all states except California. East West purchased the lists from an undisclosed list company.

"We are trying to beef up in other states first, as that is where we are lacking more," Ms. Malik said. "After that, we will be moving into a mail campaign directed toward Asian doctors and their offices."

The offer will allow doctors' offices to purchase a two-year subscription at a reduced rate for their office lobbies.

Though online content is similar, www.eastwestmagazine.com features more celebrities with relevant backgrounds. Ms. Malik says she hopes this will drive more Web traffic.

The ratio of subscriptions versus newsstand sales is 1.5-to-1. A single copy on newsstands costs $4.25, while a one-year subscription is $17.50. A one-year international subscription is $35.

Current advertisers include the recruiting department for the CIA, Dodge, Ford and e-commerce Web site Indiefinds.com.

Ms. Malik cites continued growth as the title's main priority for the rest of the year. East West is also currently focused on its Face of East 2007, the fourth annual cover model contest.

Semifinalists will be announced in the April/May issue with online voting beginning April 15. The Tour of Cities initiative will continue with upcoming issues featuring San Francisco and Toronto.

"My goal is to make East West a very mainstream lifestyle magazine with readers of varied backgrounds," Ms. Malik said. "I want readers to feel informed, educated and inspired by reading East West and to not only see some of themselves in the pages, but also gain an understanding and appreciation for today's global society and its rich diversity and benefits."

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