In the latest move to consolidate and grow its e-commerce initiatives, RamsayMedia has launched its own in-house digital magazine platform. The development aims to give the company greater flexibility in managing and monetising its relationship with subscribers and is designed to open the door to extending digital magazine fulfilment to other media companies.
The move comes two years after RamsayMedia broke ground as the first South African publisher to offer magazines on iPad, using Zinio's iPad App platform. That agreement saw Zinio take a percentage of sales and left the media house without ownership of its databases. Now, using software designed and supported by a UK company, RamsayMedia has full control of its subs data, allowing the media house to build a better relationship with readers.
The new offering gives subscribers access to a library of all digital issues of a publication, on tablet, for the duration of their subscription - a novel take on the existing model, which allows for ownership of only those issues covered by the contract period.Joining Magsathome
The digimags join RamsayMedia's other offerings on Magsathome, the site that has for many years been the company's portal for online print subscriptions, event bookings and book and merchandise sales.
Once all of RamsayMedia's titles are digitised and made available on the platform, the service will be rolled out to its clients (Associated Magazines, Condé Nast, Media Nova and Overdrive Publishing) and made available to other interested companies, explained Ian Dinan, RamsayMedia's audience development manager.
"We are excited to be in a position to offer a wholly South African solution for the management of digital magazines - as well as their databases - if required," he said. "For traditional publishers, this offers another environment for them to extend their reach, while alternative content providers and start-ups now have the opportunity to generate new business using an avenue that may not have been open to them previously."
Digital editions are available at half the cover price of the print editions, while RamsayMedia is offering a 30% discount on subscriptions.