David Carey: Be Unorthodox

Hearst Magazines president talks about shaking up industry culture

At a time when magazines need to create content for a variety of platforms, the old culture of operating in silos can’t continue, said Hearst Magazines president David Carey.

“We have to set aside long-held orthodoxies and come together to create great content,” said Carey, who spoke at Adweek’s NexTech Summit on May 1, part of the digital NewFronts.

Carey ticked off a few examples of that content that Hearst has been involved with, from Cosmopolitan’s app for guys to tablet edition subscriptions to Hello Style, Hearst’s new women’s lifestyle channel on YouTube.

“It used to be editors and publishers were involved with three revenue streams,” he said with pride, referring to advertising, subscriptions and single-copy sales. “Now, it’s probably nine.”

Getting back to Hello Style, Carey singled out one of the shows on the channel as a great example of how Hearst’s brands can translate to video.

“If you look at the content, ‘Sexy vs. Skanky’ for Cosmo is great fun,” he effused.

Not that the work ends once all that content is created. One of the challenges facing content developers is making sure their product gets seen—an issue for tablet apps and more recently all the new original content channels that are starting to populate YouTube. If you're not one of a tablet's highly promoted apps, for example, Carey said, "you're almost invisible." He added quickly, "The manufacturers are listening to us. They're all good partners."