Big Data in 2016
In an age of big data analytics let’s not ignore the available visual information, it’s not only about spreadsheets and numbers. In my consulting work I encourage specificity and direct targeting a client. As a photographer it’s important to fully understand how your work will behave inside a magazine. What features, departments or essays are you a natural fit for? Here’s a simple exercise with a year long snap shot of three different magazines who share some of the same space in the market. What do these grids tell us?
- cover consideration involves strong portraiture for all. The Red Bulletin and Outside, photographing people, National Geographic it’s photographing animals.
- Both Outside and The Red Bulletin require action and environment on a consistent basis.
- Outside and National Geographic covered National Parks for the 100th anniversary, big sweeping landscapes necessary.
- No women cover subjects.
these are just a few elements we can see. If you want to work with a magazine, know their brand.
Here’s another sample.
- It may seem obvious but the Food&Wine has to cover just that, on the cover from time to time they include a glass of wine.
Bon Appetit, not this year.
- They both cover Thanksgiving in November, one with turkey, the other with pie. Cook Like a Chef, Cook like a Pro: The same editorial concept, both in March.
- Bon Appetit has human elements keeping in step with cultural influences (tattoo, smartphone food pictures). Food&Wine didn’t have a human element this year.
- For both titles April had a bright element of color.
Food photographers can see where their style may fit better, where there may be some overlap. Again, if you want to shoot for a magazine, know their content, know their brand.