Supporters of GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney are hoping to reach potential voters in novel way -- through a branded mini-magazine distributed as a newspaper insert in key battleground states.
According to The New York Times, which first reported the news, the 12-page glossy “MittZine” was created by a super PAC, the Ending Spending Action Fund, which is financed by Joe Ricketts, the founder of TD Ameritrade. The NYT reports that publishing and distributing the free newspaper magazine cost about $1 million.
No surprise, the MittZine casts Romney in a positive light, with content including an article telling the story of how the presidential hopeful helped find the missing daughter of a Bain Capital exec, and another about his rescue of a family from a sinking boat in New Hampshire. There’s also a crossword puzzle with clues like “Mitt Romney can _____ the country out of the economic mess.”
The MittZine is being distributed in newspapers in five swing states, including The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Richmond Times Dispatch, The Cleveland Plain Dealer and The Des Moines Register; the latter recently endorsed Romney for president, backtracking on its 2008 endorsement of Obama. The Cleveland Plain Dealer has endorsed Obama, while the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has declined to endorse a candidate this year.
Yahoo, Wenner Media in Cross-Promotional Content Deal
As reported by MediaPost’s Mark Walsh earlier this week, Yahoo and Wenner Media have struck a cross-promotional content deal involving various properties, including Rolling Stone, Men’s Journal, Us Weekly and Yahoo’s omg! and Yahoo Music. Under the agreement, editorial teams from both companies will work together to co-produce exclusive content around different entertainment topics. In addition, Us Weekly and Rolling Stone will each have branded pages on omg! and Yahoo! Music, respectively, while omg! and Yahoo! Music will have branded pages on UsMagazine.com and RollingStone.com, as well as in the two magazines’ print editions.
Content from Men's Journal will also be distributed on Yahoo for the first time.
Walgreens Launches Happy and Healthy Magazine
Walgreens is joining the list of drugstores with their own custom content magazines, with the launch of Happy and Healthy, described as “your guide to living well with Walgreens.” The premiere edition of the biannual magazine is holiday-themed, including entertaining and gift ideas, along with healthy living tips, special offers and Balance Rewards loyalty program promotions.
The 28-page magazine, divided into Health and Wellness, Food and Beverage, and Beauty sections, also highlights major brands carried by Walgreens, as well as Walgreens’ own brands. It is available in English and Spanish, and a similar version is being produced for Duane Reade customers.
As noted, Walgreens isn’t the first drug store to venture into custom publication territory. In January 2008, CVS launched a custom publication, Great Health Magazine, which is home-delivered to 500,000 relatively affluent households. The magazine, produced by Basic Media Group, carries advertising for both pharma and over-the-counter products.
Meredith MXM Expands Social Media Team
Meredith Xcelerated Marketing is expanding its New Media Strategies social media practice with a number of new hires. Tom Donnelly, who previously served as director of CQ Roll Call's advocacy and engagement practice area, is joining NMS as vice-president for public affairs. Gayle Weiswasser, who previously served as vice-president of social media for Discovery Communications, is joining NMS as vice-president for engagement. James Clark, who previously served as lead social media strategist at Mindshare, where he focused on the Sprint account, is joining NMS as strategy director. Megan Malli, who previously worked at AKQA, where she was responsible for managing the Volkswagen mobile programs and the U.S. Postal Service digital shipping initiatives, is joining NMS as senior account director.