Interest Pieces

SCRUM Magazine and The Logbook. A Less Unconventional Partnership Than You Might Think

SCRUM Magazine has over a ten year publishing history become a leading and highly respected rugby focussed magazine. Based out of Edinburgh Scotland, they have covered every aspect of the sport including players, coaching, venues and suppliers with the highest standard of editorial content. As one of the most referenced sports publications in Scotland and the UK they are a voice for rugby as an industry and not only as a sport.

The Logbook, was first published in 2018 and from its first publication date was focussed on all aspects of the travel and hospitality industry. Covering major hotels, travel groups and key suppliers to the expanding fringes of the industry like glamping, small safari and tour groups and food and drink producers.

It may seem an unconventional collaboration that a leading sport publication would join forces with a hospitality mag but given the recent circumstances regarding Covid 19 and the global Lockdown it is an innovation that has already produced results.

A CLEAR CONNECTION

“There is a clear connection between interest in sport and interest in travel,” Tony Wood, Managing Editor of SCRUM Magazine explains, “For SCRUM we’ve interviewed key people from players to coaches, venues and suppliers and when asked all of them have a keen interest in travel and exploration. The Logbook offers not only one of the best selections of travel and hospitality options but also a highly engaged audience which has been diligently built up.”

With an audience that includes 110,000 Facebook page likes, 30,000 followers on Twitter and audience campaigns reaching over half a million impressions, The Logbook (www.thelostexecutive.com) has always been an advocate of cooperation with other organisations counting several industry governing bodies amongst their readers and partners. One of the key things that they look for when selecting partners, as founder Don Campbell explains, is the focus on being relevant, on the pulse and able to bridge the engagement-gap between advertiser and audience.

“Creating the content is only half the work,” he says, “Marketing it to your audience effectively is the other half and this is something that we’ve seen Bell Johnstone Communications do with all of their publications.”

WHAT DOES THE COLLABORATION MEAN?

Functionally, with the two magazines combining forces while retaining their individual titles, their impact is expected to double. The audience numbers and engagement for both publications have already started to grow thanks to natural cross-over and the administrative strain that comes with running multiple magazines is now being shared.

“SCRUM Magazine is now entering the new phase of its existence as a primarily digital magazine,” Tony explains, “This is an area where The Logbook’s team has clearly excelled and this has opened up a range of new digitally based services that we can offer our advertisers to reach out and engage with our readers.”

Additionally, he adds, SCRUM magazine will now be able to capitalise on the ever increasing international readership that has been developing over the last several years. Tony reveals, that while they have been primarily print up until June 2020 and that their focus has been primarily on rugby in Scotland, their readership has been growing beyond their borders.

“Rugby is an international community,” he says, “And people naturally gravitate to good content created by passionate people. It’s also worth mentioning that the travel connection to rugby has been known for a long time as many of our clients have been hospitality and travel organisations providing travel opportunities for fans. People tour with their favourite teams and travel to visit the big games.”

WORKING TOGETHER TO BE STRONGER

Neither SCRUM Magazine or The Logbook have had to sacrifice any of their content or relationships to create the collaboration. A happy connection that has cost neither entity anything, the focus has been entirely on what can be done to enhance the client and reader experience post Lockdown and into the future.

With countries beginning to slowly open borders and revitalise industries, there are going to be many businesses collaborating to combine their strengths for the sake of their consumers. Many industries we considered powerful have atrophied due to this unprecedented low period while others have had the opportunity to rise above the canopy to become leaders. What businesses need to get rid of, according to Don is the faith in a “historic business template”.

“The idea that because something has worked before means that it will work again is a short term platitude,” he says, “The fact is that a business is only as strong as its weakest part and that we always have to find ways to improve and strengthen these areas. Partnerships and collaborations is a perfect way of achieving this.”

Tony, who has seen SCRUM Magazine pivot to make changes over the years to keep current and engaging, echoes this sentiment whole heartedly, “We have made the process of updating ourselves part of our daily approach and our whole team keeps their fingers on the pulse.”