As you can see, we’ve been busy with our own version of Extreme Makeover here at Catalog Age headquarters. Thanks to creative director Richard Zoehrer and art production director Kate DiMarco, we’ve got a design that I think captures the excitement and dynamism of the industry today.
But the improvements we’ve made aren’t only cosmetic. We’ve also reorganized Catalog Age to make it easier to use. We stopped categorizing the content by type of article, such as “feature,” “department,” and “column” — differentiations that are meaningful only to editors (and sometimes not even then). Now the content is organized by topic and function. The Print Channel, for instance, focuses on articles to help you improve the production, printing, and distribution of your print catalogs. The Web Channel, meanwhile, zeroes in on strategies, tactics, and tips for honing the Internet-related facets of the business. For articles about topics such as operations, data management, and marketing that affect all the channels in which you market and sell your wares, we’ve got the Cross Channel section. And in each issue we’ll run either Retail Channel (focusing on how best to integrate brick-and-mortar stores with your direct business) or Eye on B-to-B (addressing challenges specific to companies that sell to other businesses).
We’ll continue to offer our award-winning news coverage, of course. And we’re still covering the topics that were such a pivotal part of the old Catalog Age. But we’re branching out to include other relevent areas as well. After all, the catalog industry has transformed radically during the 22 years in which the magazine has been around. Never mind search engine optimization, cooperative databases, and computer-to-plate printing; toll-free ordering lines were a radical concept a few decades ago. And as the industry evolves, we want to make sure we continue to evolve along with it.