Challenges, problems, and triumphs
-- from a manufacturer's perspective.
"How Michigan Scrapbooker Magazine
Substantial growth in 3+ years.
by Carrie MacGillis, (December 5, 2011)
I was working as an Editorial Assistant for
Michigan Gardener magazine in 2005 and I started to notice that
many of the departments in Michigan Gardener could apply to
scrapbooking, too: calendar of events, Q&A, educational articles,
contests, lists of local stores, and more. I mentioned this to the
owners but we didn't do anything about it at the time.
Eventually I found another job and left the
Editorial Assistant position. After a couple years I was laid off
and I emailed everyone I knew about job opportunities. The publisher
of Michigan Gardener replied and asked me if I was serious
about the idea of a scrapbooking magazine. I said yes and we started
talking and created a partnership.
It was shocking how much work was involved in
starting the magazine, but I was lucky to have partners who had more
than 12 years of experience.
Sometimes we would discuss something for 15
minutes and they would say that took us six years to figure out with
our magazine. So I learned quickly that their experience was
invaluable and was going to be essential to the success of
We had many meetings and did tons of research.
We created spreadsheets and made many phone calls. We had phone
conferences while I was folding laundry and kids were
underfoot! Finally after about six months of conversations, lots of
work, sleepless nights, and tons of stress, we launched the premier
issue of Michigan Scrapbooker.
The first issue was published in May, 2008 and
was distributed at the Great Lakes Mega Meet in Novi, MI. We
purposely timed the first issue to launch at this expo so we could
reach thousands of readers at the very beginning. Our first issue
was 16 pages and a circulation of 10,000, now we have grown to 24
pages and a circulation of 16,000. We are working hard to continue
The biggest challenge for us has been the many
scrapbook stores that have closed since the beginning of Michigan
Scrapbooker. Since our goal is to help the local, independent
scrapbook, stamp, and paper craft stores succeed, we are impacted
greatly when one closes. The local stores are our main distributors
Now we are reaching out further to the
manufacturers. We are seeing a huge benefit for the manufacturers
that are involved with Michigan Scrapbooker. The companies
who advertise their products in the magazine, and list the stores
who carry them, can reach customers who can go directly to the local
stores to find the products. NO OTHER scrapbook magazine can do
this! We are very excited about the future of Michigan
Scrapbooker and we are confident that we are on the path to an
amazing success story.
(Editor's note: Carrie can be reached at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 248-760-6782.
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