Thursday, March 23, 2006

Award winning B2B magazines

I'm back in New York today, but I didn't get a chance to attend the Neal Awards. So I just learned the results a few minutes ago when I checked my feeds.
The big winner was Farm Journal magazine. The veteran monthly picked up the Grand Neal award for a series that the judges called a "masterful blending of science, consumer reporting, and passion." I'm pleased by Farm Journal's win. I've worked with a lot of agriculture publications over the years, and Farm Journal has always been a worthy competitor. And the magazine has managed to excel in what has become one of the most competitive spaces in B2B media.

IDG picked up three awards. And that shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who reads this blog. I'm a bit of an IDG groupie. I just adore much of what that company does, and I use them often as an example of excellence. (FULL DISCLOSURE: IDG is a client of mine.)

Take a look at the complete list of winners here. (BtoB magazine has a story here. And check out what my friend David Shaw has to say about the winners here.) You'll see that some of the very best products in trade publishing are represented.

But as longtime readers of this blog would guess, I'm perplexed by's victory as best small Web site. When the Vance Publishing site was nominated two months ago, I made note of just how poor a choice I thought that was. Porkmag, I said, has "no interactivity -- no links, no feedback functions. The news section is just a news feed. The magazine material isn't repurposed and there's nothing original that I see." I have to confess....I don't see anything worth praising at the site. And I'm shocked that ABM found the product worthy of an award.
(FULL DISCLOSURE: I was once a senior writer at Vance.)

AviationWeek Intelligence Network won the Best Web site award for a mid-size product. I haven't the slightest idea if that site is any good. AWIN has the single most offensive registration process I've ever seen on a Web site. Take a look here. And if you're willing to hand over your phone number, someone will call you sometime in the next two days to let you sample the site.

ADDENDUM: I had to chuckle as I looked through the list of Neal Award winners again and saw that DVM magazine won an award for news coverage. Just yesterday I pointed to DVM as having the worst idea in B2B publishing for its silly policy of charging users $20 to email a story to a friend. DVM's award was for something called "The Long Road to Recovery."
If anyone out there has some extra cash, maybe they can send me a copy of the story.

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  1. Hi Paul,

    I'm the editor of AWIN, and I know the registration process is, at best, time consuming. Sales & Marketing say there's a good reason for it, however.

    We relaunched AWIN last year, and it's gratifying to see the hard work paid off.

    Something Scott Denton said at the luncheon yesterday gelled with the message of your blog: That we in the trade press need to stop resisting change; that we need to embrace all delivery systems for our content. I hope it's a message that hit home.

    --Madhu Unnikrishnan

  2. Hi Madhu,
    Thanks for your comment.
    I too hope Scott's message resonates within our community.
    Congrats on AWIN's award.

  3. Thank you, Paul.

    I've long followed your blog, and I think you've nailed what the future of our industry should be.

    I'm thrilled by AWIN's win, of course, but I think there is still a long road to travel.

    Madhu Unnikrishnan

  4. Paul,

    I couldn't agree more with you about I was embarrassed and ashamed that PRISM didn't get any submissions in, as we could have easily trumped that. Also, having a competing title (, it added insult to injury. I promise you, next year, there will be more competition.