Takeaway: In one year, Hammes grew revenues, increased circulation on both print and digital platforms, redesigned the magazine and increased web traffic.
For Lynda Hammes, Foreign Affair’s 92-year tradition is a top priority. Still, she readily admits that innovation is crucially important to keep the brand on track and thriving.
“We have done a lot in the past year, Hammes says. “We introduced a new design [including] a new cover. This is the first time in history that the magazine has had images on the cover, so you can imagine what this has done for newsstand business.
Hammes says that circulation is at an all-time high (180,000), and the company exceeded all of its circulation goals last year. Not only that, but the magazine raised its single-copy price by 30 percent which has led to more revenue and profit.
Tradition aside, Foreign Affairs is doing big things with digital, too. Web traffic is up 12 percent in 2013 when compared to 2012. And the title has an 80/20 mix between print and digital subscriptions. Hammes calls it a “healthy mix,” and says, “We don’t want to see attrition in print. We have a strong, loyal print audience, and advertisers still love it.” Hammes backs that up by pointing out that the magazine is 42 percent ahead on advertising revenue, this year over last.
Looking ahead, Hammes will look to improve digital products, and in 2014 the brand will launch a responsive design website that will also offer advertisers a platform for native ads.