Even as events become more central revenue pillars for a lot of B2B brands, few publishers are reorganizing their media products around them.
Informa is taking a big step in that direction though, merging Food Product Design into Natural Products Insider in an attempt to put forward a more unified voice to its audience, and one more closely aligned with its main trade show, SupplySide West. The event drew about 13,000 attendees and generated 1,700 booth sales in 2014.
“For some time, we’ve been assessing how to best serve our audience with comprehensive content across the supplement, food and beverage industries in a media platform the way we do at our in-person event, SupplySide West,” says Heather Granato, vice president of content for Informa’s health and nutrition network.
As with any merger, there will be overlap of readers and clients, though Granato is confident “a majority” of Food Product Design advertisers will migrate to the new product lineup as it ceases publication.
Any internal overlap is being absorbed though. No staff changes will come as a result, she says.
To an extent, the move also shows just how much faith Informa is putting on digital and events, compared to print.
According to brand media kits, Natural Products Insider only has about 3,000 more site registrants than Food Product Design (22,000 versus 19,000); meanwhile, it’s print circulation is just a third the size (12,000 versus 32,000).
That edge on the digital side matters though, Granato says, as does its general positioning in the marketplace.
“While the print circulation numbers are larger on FPD, we have really been transitioning our strategy from strictly print to digital-focused,” she says. “Insider has served as the leading media brand to the nutritional ingredients marketplace for nearly 20 years, and has been more directly aligned with SupplySide West, the major event for that space. While Food Product Design has a storied history, the perception—even from the name—remains that it is very food-centric; Insider has a naturally broader platform to integrate even more food and beverage coverage than it has been doing, just as we have done with our SupplySide event.”