An Associate Spotlight Interview with:
Senior Managing Director
Ken Harding has over 30 years experience in the newspaper and media industry with direct involvement in well over 200 publishing projects for newspapers and magazines.
Ken has provided strategic business, due diligence, operational advisory services and leadership to newspaper and media companies of varying size. He has worked at the corporate and business-unit level to lead business improvement and growth – performance improvement – as well as merger integration and other complex operational issues.
Projects have delivered value-based performance improvement plans for Advertising & News Operations, Production, Transportation and Circulation | Delivery as well as analysis and recommendations for consolidation, centralization and outsourcing.
Recent magazine corporate clients include Condé Nast, Hearst magazines, Meredith National Media, Trusted Media Brands, The Enthusiast Network and Time Inc.
1) How does your company partner with MPA members to help them succeed?
As consultants we have worked with numerous MPA members to address the challenges of the magazine business and help them transform the business to maintain a sustainable model. This has been done by consulting on digital strategies and pay meters, helping assess options to reduce rate base, assessing all titles in terms of optimizing them and the progression to more digital audiences and revenue.
2) What challenges or uncertainties do you see on the horizon for the industry?
As a legacy publishing industry, magazines face the on-going shift from consumer's changing from print to digital consumption of content and more experiential types of opportunities. The industry also faces continued pressure on print advertising and the challenge of digital advertising growth vs. Google, Facebook and Amazon. Due to guaranteed volumes, subscriber yield has been low vs. other print media.
3) What had the greatest impact on your business this year?
N/A as consultant
4) If you were a magazine brand, which would you be and why?
An Enthusiast brand, with passion around a central topic, large enough to have scale with multiple sources of revenue and touch points with my consumers.
5) Is there anything we haven’t asked you today that you wish we had?