Delivering a Compelling Message
The dawning of the digital era brought with it an immense wave of change. One area to see a massive shift was our relationship with content and how and where we digest it. The number of people snuggling into an armchair with an oversized copy of the Times is undeniably on the wane. But people are still reading. All the time. Words are fundamental to human expression and communication, and words or content are an essential cog in the marketing machine. And in this bid to reach out and engage with an audience, online magazines materialised as a powerful instrument for driving a positive connection with a brand.
The online world may have changed life as we know it but, at heart, we all remain the same: social creatures who want to connect. And a corporate magazine should be about exactly that – creating and growing a real connection with your audience. It is not a brochure, thrusting products and services or pushing sales. It is a conversation. Using compelling articles and appealing imagery, an effective brand magazine interacts with the reader. Powerful content will engage, entertain, excite and enlighten while simultaneously allowing the business to express a more personal voice. Building a stronger brand image and reputation continues to be a driver but subjects of interest create an affinity, a mutually beneficial relationship between business and reader as they absorb the company messages and enjoy doing so.
Out with the old, in with the new
We created INCH magazine website for INEOS in order to build this affinity. To reveal the voice of the people behind the brand. We wanted a platform that was way ahead of a simple digital page turner, a platform that would be at home on any global media title, and where users would enjoy the experience of using the site as much as the content itself. Through arresting visuals and the written word, INEOS is able to show the breadth of its operation, stepping out of the shadows of supply-exchange customer relationships into dialogue and discussion. For example, a sports edition shows how INEOS chemicals are used in sports equipment. This highlights the company’s reach into all areas of our lives, as well as conveying INEOS’ internal culture of sport, health and fitness.
With the new INCH website, design works in tandem with words to captivate the reader visually. Moving away from the traditional PDF format and page-turning brochures, we put the content into pages incorporated into the website that are more enjoyable and easier to peruse. The magazine can be accessed from anywhere on the INEOS site, while articles within the magazine refer back to other site content. Integrated in this way, the magazine does not work in isolation but in collaboration with the rest of the main corporate site. Multiple issues are available simultaneously and work together with links to similar articles appearing where relevant. In this way, previous content is not neglected and forgotten: it becomes current again.
An SEO-friendly alternative
Meanwhile, this searchable, relevant and rich content has multiple SEO advantages. SEO was one of the drivers for the new site. We saw from INEOS’ Analytics that Google was driving traffic to articles on the main site but not to INCH. This was the information we needed to be able to justify creating a brand new presence for INCH, a site where all the content was visible to search engines and far easier for a new user to stumble upon. The INCH site is also available in six different languages, giving it truly global scope, and importantly it is mobile and tablet optimised – essential at a time when increased readership of digital magazines is linked to the rise in tablet ownership and mobile usage. And lastly, it just looks really, really nice.
It’s not just us who think so. Readers agree. Page views of INCH have increased dramatically. In waving goodbye to the page-turner magazines of the past, reading transforms from a one-way monologue to a two-way dialogue: a conversation between INEOS and its audience.