In 2016, Dialogue demonstrated its content strategy, brand understanding, production and multi-channel content expertise with the new business pitch, win and subsequent launch in print and digital of My Co-op magazine.
Central England Co-operative is one of the largest independent UK retail societies. Like all co-operatives, the Society is owned and run by its members and communication with members is extremely important. Central England Co-op required a refreshed biannual member’s magazine that works harder as a communication channel with members and drives stronger engagement for the society. The current format was direct mailed but they were interested in looking at alternative distribution channels, increased online offering and multi-platform content that would encourage broader member engagement across the full range of the Society’s offerings, emphasising the member benefits which include, but go far beyond, financial reward.
Following a successful pitch which provided clear brand understanding and a fully rounded commercial and creative prospect, across multiple platforms, we were awarded the contract and have produced two issues of My Co-op magazine and mymagazine.coop so far.
My Co-op magazine successfully reinvents the print offering of Central England Co-operative. The magazine is on uncoated stock and features bold typography and design. It brings a modern, clean and fresh look, with bespoke content of genuine interest to members and covering stories of relevance to their communities and shared ethos.
My Co-op magazine puts food at the forefront of its design, with high quality food photography on the cover. The recipes all tie in with the Society’s multi-platform offering, with recipes in the magazine accompanied by step-by-step photography and films online and clearly signposted in the magazine. All of this augments the reader experience, directs their journey online and ultimately encourages higher footfall and increased basket spend in store. Issue 2 also incorporated Augmented Reality with the ‘layar’ app providing active video content in the print magazine.
Crucial in the brief was broadening the reach of the publication and increasing the demographic, specifically targeting younger members and potential members. The microsite mymagazine.coop achieves this. Slickly optimised for mobile devices and with a smart tiled design, all the content from the magazine has been repurposed onto the microsite. Bespoke designed banners and imagery and simple use of fonts and structural devices ensure the site is clean and easy to navigate and the step-by-step recipes and videos are used to enhance the user experience. Clear placing of social channels and integration of all channels with bespoke social posts created to promote the website keep it aligned with the brand messaging and make the microsite an integral part of the society’s communications plan.
This cohesive, multi-platform approach fits seamlessly alongside the Society’s existing communications, with social, web and film included and referenced with ease.
Positive feedback from Central England Co-op and, crucially, the Society’s members, proves that the magazine and microsite has hit the mark. Engagement with competitions is excellent, advertisers report a positive response and the website has enjoyed a growing audience. With distribution via in store pick up for members for the second issue, the print magazine is reaching the desired audience.