Midori House: Monocle’s headquarter, a creative and challenging space.
A Good Design Manager should be always up to date with global affairs, business, culture and design news.
Monocle is a magazine about global affairs, business, culture, design and a complete media brand with print, audio and online presence, supported through official shops as well as cafés all over the world, and the most recent newsstand and coffee concept ‘Kioskafé’ in London.
In a recent interview personally conducted with the associate art director Kate McInerney, the reasons behind the success of Monocle have been investigated.
Kate McInerney shared her time and expertise explaining how design operates within Monocle, in particular in relation to the promotion of a slow media branding.
Design within Monocle is everywhere, and it allowed the brand to stay loyal to its belief in quality print for almost a decade now, with ten published magazines per year, two seasonal publications (‘The Forecast’ and ‘The Escapist’), and several guides on business, lifestyle and travels.
Monocle relies on slow medias, through an ATL (above the line) brand that works on radio (Monocle 24), print and advertising, with physical concept stores and pop-ups.
It has been argued that ‘Slow Medias’ represent a cultural innovation and a disruptive way of dealing with modern technologies. In her publication, Rauch, J (2011) explains that slow medias are both a philosophy and a practice that engage with print and analog communication in order to enhance a physical relation and interaction with the products.
‘Our business philosophy is that Monocle is really print-focused, so we have a website and all the digital part, but we don’t use social media, because we have a lot of respect for print, that is why we want the magazine to be a beautiful product.’
McInerney, K. (2016)
Through the interview it has been possible to understand the key elements at the heart of Monocle-brand: the first big idea was to launch in 2007 a cultivate and extremely open minded magazine, that has successfully stayed faithful to its core values ever since.
The main concept has always been a strong belief in print and the ocjective is to maintain a beautiful magazine with rich contents and good aesthetics.
In order to compete with users and markets that are going digital and come across, Monocle’s personality is enhancing its print offer as well as expanding the brand through cafés, stores and special projects.
Rauch, Jennifer. 2011. The Origin of Slow Media: Early Diffusion of a Cultural Innovation through Popular and Press Discourse, 2002–2010. Transformations 20 (http://transformationsjournal.org/journal/issue_20/article_01.shtml).