Our Digital Story So Far
Since 1975, IMAGE has been the most trusted fashion, beauty and lifestyle title in Ireland. IMAGE.ie was redesigned and relaunched in April 2013, bringing this 39-year-old brand firmly into the modern age. IMAGE.ie, the digital sister of IMAGE magazine, offers daily posts on style, beauty, interiors and events, written by a panel of savvy columnists.
According to research, our users are Ireland’s premium female spenders, who are style-conscious, enjoy dining out, invest in quality skincare products and travel regularly. They also love hearing about what’s trending in the worlds of style, news and celebrity. A campaign on IMAGE.ie means that your message will get out to all of our discerning readers.
Want to tap into one of the most engaged, loyal community of readers in Ireland? All you have to do is attend our next Networking Breakfast…
The Science of Attracting a Digital Audience
From 7.30am–10am on Tuesday, September 9
The Marker Hotel, Grand Canal Dock, Dublin 2
The winner will be selected from the attendees at the next IMAGE Networking Breakfast in the Marker Hotel on Tuesday, September 9. So, bring along your business cards and drop them at our registration desk on the morning. To book, click here.
Laura George, Group Editorial Director at IMAGE Publications, drove the decision to make IMAGE.ie something worthy of a daily habit. If IMAGE.ie is IMAGE Magazine’s younger sister, Laura’s its elder one.
We took some time out to sit down with Laura and talk about what she has learned since launching iMAGE.ie…
What were the critical decisions involved in launching IMAGE.ie?
It’s really simple. We felt that, as a media company, it was impossible to ignore that the way most people consume media is changing – and fast. We had to react, even if that meant making a major investment in the middle of a recession. If your brands are all about what’s happening now, how can you not be online? And if you want to have a future, how can you afford not to take the plunge?
In creating IMAGE.ie’s voice and content, what did you consider?
This was the most important thing to get right by a million miles. IMAGE readers are intelligent and curious and care about how things look and feel. The design had to be world-class and the content had to have value for our readers or they wouldn’t come back and we would damage our brand. Choosing the right editor, who would have a gut feel for all those sensitivities was key. From day one, Ellie Balfe has shaped the site into exactly what we needed – whether we’re covering a pop-up restaurant, live-streaming a fashion show, putting our own spin on celebrity news or reviewing a movie, there’s continuity: one voice.
How would you describe that voice?
It’s like your soundest but funniest friend on Facebook, sharing the topical stories that most caught her attention, as well as snippets of things that are of interest to her but aren’t so time sensitive – what it’s like to be a first-time mother, what it’s really like to hook up on Tinder, a picture of the coat she’s lusting after, what’s so great about her new fitness programme, or maybe a profile of an inspiring woman starting up a new business she’s passionate about. That virtual friend has done all the work of looking at all the other websites and news, and edited out what’s interesting. When we were just monthly, we were always conscious of how content dates. As a daily, we can cover so much more.
What do you see as a key to driving traffic? What doesn’t work?
Foremost, quality. No one’s going to share something that’s boring. Because we have tight budgets, we have to rely almost solely on the power of our social media to drive our traffic – the advantage of that is that we have instant, real-time analytics for every single story that show us what works and what doesn’t work. It’s really exciting to have that feedback – and often surprising – so you’ve got to pay attention 24/7 and react.
If you were advising someone to embark on creating a website or blog, what advice would you give?
Be true to yourself and your product. Don’t try to copy someone else – we all know how crowded it is out there; you’ll just become part of the white noise. And be flexible. Things change so fast, you’ve got to be nimble – this is one area where forward planning is nigh-on impossible.
What websites do you like?
I love nerdy ones about new psychological studies and tech – Quartz, Fast Company, anything that makes you feel the world is a place full of new ideas and dynamic people making them happen. I always check LeCool to see what’s going on in Dublin, Stylist for fashion, Design Sponge for house porn and Pinterest whenever I have time – if you follow the right people, it’s concentrated visual inspiration for food, fashion and anything and everything pretty. Having said that, I’m just as keen to know what George Clooney is up to and when the next season of The Good Wife or Nashville starts so I cruise all the standard guilty-pleasure sites, too.
I’m really lucky. Having spent the last month visiting more than 800 entries for our new Blog Awards on IMAGE.ie, I’ve been introduced to so many amazing new talents here in Ireland. I had absolutely no idea there was so much going on in the Irish blogosphere or how original so much of it is. The shortlist is pretty much the best reflection of my favourites. I’d love to give some in particular a shout-out here, but that wouldn’t be fair!
Laura will speak at the next IMAGE Networking Breakfast in the Marker Hotel on Tuesday, September 9. Tickets are just €45 and can be purchased here. For more information on the event, email [email protected], call 01 271 9688 or click here.