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E-zines - Are they still relevant in the age of social media and information overload?
3rd October 2013

ezinesThere was a time that e-zines were all the rage. Everyone was creating them and I was subscribed to literally dozens of them. However with Facebook and other social tools taking up precious online time they are being read less and less. Information overload is another issue working against e-zines.

E-zines piling up in the mailboxes and causing guilt trips for the subscribers.

I was subscribed to over forty e-zines which I could not find the time to read. I finally could not take the guilt. I unsubscribed from them en masse. No more piles of mail waiting in sub folders, no more guilt about what I am missing. Now I simply go to the websites when I get time and read directly on the sites or use an RSS aggregator to pull relevant information.

Corporates still use them to bludgeon employees with useless information and photos.

Recently I had the misfortune of going through dozens of corporate e-zines. I simply became sick of seeing dozens of photos of corporate fat cats in suits receiving award after award. It seemed like some narcissitic vulgar form of self gratification. I really feel for the poor line employee who has to endure these e-zines. It's like something out of a Dilbert cartoon.

Are you missing anything important? I think not.

Before I unsubscribed to all those e-zines, I wondered if I would miss anything important. However after going through my pending e-zines pile I realized that barely 1% of them seemed to be important. And that information I was anyways getting from my RSS aggregator. The truth is most of the e-zines are sent to fill empty space in the corporate PR key result areas.Very very few really contain important and not to be missed information.

Who are they for anyways?

My major gripe against most ezines, other than some rare exceptions, is they seem to be sent to the wrong target or a one size fits all seems to be sent to everyone. Either ways, it does not answer the critical question for the reader, 'whats in it for me?'. I am remninded about the proverb, that when you try to please everyone you end up pleasing no one.

The day of pushing information blindly to all and sundry are gone. Social media has ensured that micro niches and macro niches have to be catered seperatelly. E-zines cannot be the marketing hammer to bludgeon everyone with. Frankly the days of e-zines are well behind us.

Cheers,
Ron

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