When I wrote about magazine companies staging their own health-care conferences about a year and a half ago, it seems I was getting the trend only half right. Because really, they’re putting on all kinds of conferences. The latest pub to get in on the action: The New York Times Magazine, which next month is presenting its first-ever live event — NYT Mag Live. Scheduled for the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco on Sunday, June 7, the three-hour program will be hosted by Editor in Chief Jake Silverstein and built around the magazine’s Design & Technology special issue, which is being published that same day.
The New York Times itself has long hosted events such as TimesTalks and The New York Times Travel Show. Why is the magazine just now following its lead? “Our readers are already highly engaged with our journalism — in print, online and on mobile,” Silverstein said in a statement, “and we created NYT Mag Live so they can connect with our journalists directly, in an immediate and interactive forum.”
In other words, a publication that is the epitome of old media — a daily newspaper’s weekly magazine — but hasn’t been shy about exploring new media thinks that there’s still an experience its readers are missing out on: face-to-face. It makes me wonder what meeting planners might in turn learn from that example. Are you fully leveraging the content you create for your events across all the other platforms at your disposal? Your organization’s magazine and website? Social-media channels? And at your events, are you allowing your attendees to fully engage with the people who are supplying your content?
The New York Times Magazine has been around for 120 years. But maybe it has a few new tricks to teach us.