First, let’s state the obvious: most schools made dramatic changes during the early weeks of the pandemic that weren’t based on in-depth analysis. This isn’t a criticism! The changes were an immediate response to an unprecedented crisis. Communications teams slashed costs, cut the number of issues in their magazine or trimmed pages. Some went entirely […]
About Erin Peterson
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I made my first set of annual predictions last year. Were they good? Were they terrible? I mean, the assumptions didn’t include a pandemic, that’s for sure. Will 2021 bring the same kind of chaos? There’s still plenty of uncertainty, but based on what I’m hearing from clients and newsletter subscribers, here are some of […]
Over the past few months, I’ve been talking to editors who are feeling squeezed like never before — trimmed staff, smaller budgets, more responsibilities. And the last thing that they can afford is a magazine story that goes off the rails for one reason or another. It seemed like a good idea at the time. […]
I was delighted to talk to this year’s Sibley-winning editor: Joe Wakelee-Lynch. Joe is editor of LMU Magazine from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. The magazine is gorgeous and ambitious and singular. (You can read the report from judges here.) Joe has been with the university since 2006, and the story topics and approaches reflect […]
Recently, I was talking with a client about a major feature project that used a lot of institutional VIPs as sources, and I brought up my source approval process.“Wait,” she said. “You do an approval process for every source? On every story?” via GIPHY Yep. Want to skip straight to the exact source-approval template I use, complete […]
One of my favorite things to do every year is talk to the winner of the Sibley Magazine of the Year. This year, I was thrilled to talk to Maria Henson, who is editor of the knockout Wake Forest Magazine, a three-times a year publication for alumni. Henson, a 1982 Wake Forest alum, has been at the […]
Years ago, when I first started interviewing folks for alumni magazines, I could not have been more terrible at asking questions. Once, while interviewing a recent grad whose short stories had been widely praised, I asked the following “question.” “I read that your work has been compared to Italo Calvino’s. That must be pretty cool.” […]
I’ve heard from many of you that you’ll be taking your magazine digital for one or more issues. While it definitely saves money on printing and mailing costs, it will also likely require some dramatic shifts in your editorial priorities. You can no longer literally “push” the publication into your readers’ hands A move online typically […]
There’s no question that times are tough for higher ed these days. Some colleges are closing their doors for good. Others are mapping out layoffs, furloughs, and other drastic cuts. What happens this fall? It’s anybody’s guess. In the midst of these big changes, your magazine might be on the chopping block. At the very […]
What does your audience actually want to read these days? What stories can you tell that will feel like a welcome shift from the daily deluge of bad news? These are questions a lot of schools are asking right now. It’s not just that we don’t want stories to feel stale when they arrive on readers’ […]