Just Did It: Mine Magazine (Will the Real Me Please Stand Up)

Mine magazine promised big.  The premise: a customizable title that you can fashion to fit your interests — something that’s already accomplished quite well via various web portals.

mine cover

Still, I like big promises and wanted to check it out.  I missed the deadline to receive a hard copy, but answered a few questions to get the digital version in five weeks.  Five weeks?  Isn’t digital supposed to offer at least a semblance of immediate gratification?

Now, back to those questions.  There were only about five and they were so unremarkable that I can’t recall them.  But I do remember being impressed:  “Man, this must be a very sophisticated technology if it’ll be able to develop an interesting and well-targeted publication from these silly questions.”

Five weeks later, I had two issues of Mine in my mailbox.  Before I delve into them, let me introduce the fatal flaw.  I live in Brooklyn, am 32-years-old, single with no kids and have never once owned a car in my life.  I am quite proud of that.  Mine is single-sponsored by Lexus, so “customized” ads for the 2010 RX (this is like Chinese for me) scream at me from every page.

Issue #1

This is the high-living version of me with kids and an East Hampton summer house.

vinage wine mine nest egg

The articles go on to show me how to:  get the best views from my private plane ride; encourage my kids to exercise; purchase custom denim; turn an unfinished basement into an entertainment center; and protect my nest egg…with a darling picture of a couple with kids bouncing around in the blurry background.  Oh, and the Lexus closing ad proclaims:  “The all-new 2010 RX.  Now with more Mariela Azcuy.”

Issue #2

While the car ads are still irrelevant, these are at least more on target.  They talk about how I like to sing in the car (check) and need something I can easily parallel park between a hot dog vendor and a bike messenger (double check).

lexus singing voice tasting mine

The mix of articles is more my real-life style:  a New Orleans travel guide; yummy recipes from Food & Wine (although the cocktails story should really focus on beer or wine); cheap beauty product winners; and building a bond portfolio (this is where I tune out and feel guilty about it).

Conclusion

You need way more than five generic questions to really deliver a magazine made for me.  You need a few advertisers or at least a product that appeals to a larger audience, especially for a digital magazine that will probably be accessed mostly by city dwellers in areas of great public transportation.  A tech product like a computer or digital camera seems like a natural fit.  You need to fix the glitch and not send me two magazines — or introduce me to that fantasy Mariela Azcuy, who sounds like a stellar gal.

Posted by: Mariela

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