Reader’s Digest Is Transforming Into a Digital-First Publisher

Trusted Media Brands will present seven lifestyle video series at Monday's NewFront

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Advertisers will flock to New York’s Crosby Hotel on Monday for Trusted Media Brand Inc.’s second-annual NewFronts presentation. If last year’s was any indication, attendees should bring their appetites.

During its first NewFronts, TMBI spoke about its transformation from a venerable print publisher of lifestyle content, anchored by Reader’s Digest, into a digital-focused content company. Roughly 12 months later, the move seems to be paying dividends.

“Our digital business has grown tremendously since last year’s NewFronts presentation,” CEO Bonnie Kintzer told Adweek. “We’ve created new video initiatives across our digital properties, developed new partnerships with industry-leading agencies and continue to add some of the brightest and most talented people in the business to our digital team.”

TMBI has created 65 video campaigns across its most notable brands: Reader’s Digest, Taste of Home, and The Family Handyman, and looks to serve a multi-generational audience of 25- to 39-year-olds—a post-graduate demographic as well as people who are getting started with careers and families.

Among TMBI’s achievements this past year is a partnership with J.M. Smucker’s Hungry Jack on Taste of Home’s Fun with Food series, a food crafting series hosted by Taste of Home Test Kitchen experts Mark Hagen and Lauren Knoelke.

Taste of Home showcased popular Hungry Jack breakfast products in a custom video series called Fun with Food: BreakFEAST Edition. It offered a how-to guide for millennials interested in improving their culinary skills.

The series, which viewers could find on an interactive content hub, recently won min’s 2017 Best of the Web Awards.

All in all, Trusted Media Brands is currently serving monthly digital content to 53.8 million consumers, which is a 55 percent increase in audience growth since 2014. The company also boasts 63.2 million active social users across its portfolio. On social and mobile, TMBI reaches 21 million adult millennials (25-39 years old).

“On Monday, we’ll be unveiling details about seven fantastic original digital video series, as well as some eye-opening research for attendees,” said Kintzer. “Our presentation truly highlights our company’s commitment to digital innovation, multi-channel delivery and brand trust for our marketing partners and consumer audience. Home does truly start here at TMBI for our advertising partners, as well as our devoted, loyal audience.”

Here are those series:

  • Reader’s Digest is planning two new series, including My Morning Ritual, which explores the healthy morning habits of well-known people from all walks of life. This series turns “healthy” into a fascinating and diverse storyline spanning an eclectic world of inspiring lifestyles and backgrounds. A second series, yet to be named, highlights ways to stay healthy beyond physical fitness. Each episode showcases a different health topic – from eating and sleeping to listening and loving.
  • Taste of Home’s Everyday Gorgeous food and styling video series aims to inspire audiences to make everyday table and food experiences into moments of beauty with quick tips to transform meals. The kitchen inspiration continued with Taste of Home’s other series, Test Kitchen Shorts. These quick and easy-to-consume videos share interesting shortcuts, tricks and ideas that will excite any curious, enthusiastic home cook.
  • The Family Handyman introduced The Design+Build Challenge, a series pitting seasoned Family Handyman editors against a team of up-and-coming makers to create new furniture from salvaged junk. Using scavenged materials and a little bit of ingenuity, these competitors will give viewers a glimpse of the design and build process as stamina and creativity are put to the test.
  • The new lineup also features an original series from Haven Home Media, Bragging Rights, hosted by professional house flippers Dave Seymour and Pete Souhleris, formerly of A&E’s Flipping Boston. Within each episode, the design team will complete first-rate, specialty home features creating prideful projects for viewers to implement and boast about.

@ajkatztv A.J. Katz is the senior editor of Adweek's TVNewser.