Australian Doctor landed on GPs’ desks this month with a sharp new look at a time when medical publishers are gearing up for the annual GP readership survey.
In this Q&A, Australian Doctor Group editor-in-chief Jo Hartley shares some insights into the relaunch, and why print is bucking global media trends and remains relevant at a time when media is largely focussed on digital strategy.
Q: What was the rationale for a redesign in 2018?
Australian Doctor magazine has been the most read GP publication nationally for more than 30 years. During that time it has been through many iterations and we felt it was time once again to update our look.
The new design is much more modern, it has a cleaner more open look, with whiter paper and larger, sharper images.
Q: Is there an argument that most engagement is now online?
Users can now access Australian Doctor in many ways; via print, digital and social platforms and the Australian Doctor editorial team’s goal is to ensure maximum engagement in every channel.
Q: What insights do you have into print readership?
Surprisingly, medical publishing seems to be bucking global media trends with continued strong readership of the print titles in this niche.
Australian Doctor is holding onto its throne as the leading independent medical publication with an average 72% of GPs Australia-wide reading the weekly print issue. The statistics are based the results of the most recent independent research commissioned by the Medical Publishers Association in 2017.
While consumption of our digital channels continues to grow and we explore new ways for our advertisers to reach readers via these platforms, print remains a strong part of the mix.
Q: Are there any new editorial sections or is it a revamp of what you already publish?
The magazine contains the same high-quality independent journalism and education it always has. The sections remain unchanged offering news, opinion, analysis, clinical features and CPD education.
Q: What does it offer advertisers?
A cleaner look that allows advertisements to breath alongside high-quality editorial content.
Q: How does the redesign fit in with the rest of the Australian Doctor offering ie digital channels?
Readers who also visit our websites will see design elements from our new-look magazine mirrored across our digital offerings. For example, our ‘WorkWise’ section, which covers business, medicolegal, finance and ethical issues, is soon to have a more prominent digital space and its branding that can be seen in the magazine redesign will be reflected online.
Q: Should marketers give their products a voice in all channels including print?
If marketers want to reach as many GPs as possible then they need to have a voice in all channels.
Q: Is the print title serving a particular segment of your readership or does it appeal to all doctors/demographics?
Our magazine is read by GPs of all ages, gender and location. Of course we have a very loyal older GP readership base who have been with us from the start.
But we regularly get feedback from GP registrars, and even medical students, who say they pick up print copies of Australian Doctor when they’re working in practices. The younger GPs and students especially like out ‘How to Treat’ clinical education series.
Q: Is print media still relevant in 2018? If so, why?
We believe print media is still very relevant. It offers a different experience to online media. Sitting down and turning the pages of a well-thought out magazine that bundles a range of relevant content together for the user is a very effective, efficient and enjoyable way to consume media.