Things are changing once again at one of my former employers, Primedia Business.
The B2B publisher will fold two existing magazines into one in a move that "Folio"magazine warns "runs the risk of opening up opportunities for niche competitors."
Primedia plans to combine "Catalog Age" and "Operations and Fulfillment" into something called "Multichannel Merchant."
Off the top of my head, this doesn't seem like the best idea.
First, I just hate the new name. It's too similar to Reed Business' Multichannel News. More importantly, the name is supposed to evoke the broad business of online and print catalogs, direct mail and telemarketing. But to me it seems sort of bland and unfocused.
Second, I'm always a little wary when a niche publication -- where success comes from having expertise in a small area -- decides to go broader.
I assume the rebranding is part of Primedia Business' larger effort to refocus its marketing publications as part of the Chief Marketer initiative. And I'm generally supportive of that move.
But I have to say I agree with "Folio" on this one. There's considerable risk here.