The Finder is a truly unique SPH publication: It’s for expatriates living in Singapore yet owned by one of the country’s most influential home-grown companies. Along with my Publisher partner, Eileen Chia, who also heads Digital & Integrated Solutions at SPHM, we’re aiming to capitalise on this “insider” status.
Meaning what, exactly?
To start, The Finder team itself is incredibly diverse: a collection of expats, Singaporeans and PRs from the likes of Indonesia, Malaysia and Myanmar. We’ve begun mining our own “human” resources with frequent brainstorming sessions – including the editorial, art, digital, sales and marketing teams – to develop content that readers can’t find anywhere else, all in one place. We recently changed the tagline, accordingly, to the “Insider’s Guide for Expats in Singapore.”
For this free print publication to stay relevant in the Digital Age, Eileen and I feel that The Finder needs to be less time-sensitive, as it’s displayed in 400 locations around the island each month – stores, cafes, salons, doctor’s offices – and not on paid newsstands. “By offering more compelling content and long-tail client support, we believe we’re better serving our readers and advertisers,” Eileen explains.
Or, as one of my former colleagues at Good Housekeeping used to say: “In the future, people will collect magazines in the same way that they collect vinyl records.” We’re banking on people wanting to save upcoming issues of The Finder and “play” them over and over.
To make the magazine and special booklets even more coveted, we’ve begun tapping talented, in-the-know contributors – with CVs that include The New York Times, Time Out Singapore, The Singapore Women’s Weekly and other major brands. In the next issue, we’ll also introduce a rotating panel of 12 Finder Insiders (i.e., expat and Singaporean influencers). They’ll help inform print stories and online posts that reflect the wide variety of cultures and viewpoints in Singapore. We’re (not so) secretly hoping they become unofficial ambassadors for our brand, too.
No question, expats will always be our main focus, but we’re now targeting “global locals” as well – Singaporeans who have international tastes or interests, whether because they’ve studied, worked or lived abroad, or because they are married to a foreigner or simply keen to read The Finder’s multifaceted perspective on living, working and playing in Singapore.
A final way we’re leveraging our “insider” access: We’re curating more stories and posts from other SPH titles and partner sites. The Finder’s editorial team is tiny – just two people, not including our awesome intern who will have to go back to school at some point (sob!). Being able to repurpose existing content relevant to our readers for free is HUGE.
I encourage you all to check out the next issue of The Finder in July. (Spoiler alert: The theme is “We Heart SG” – and there’s a LOT to love inside.) Oh, and if you know of any great intern candidates, please send them our way (http://www.thefinder.com.sg/finder-magazine/finder-looking-editorial-intern)!
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About Sara Lyle Bow :
Sara is the Editor of The Finder. She loves exploring Singapore – especially her Joo Chiat neighbourhood – and feels fortunate to be able to live in a historic shop house. She’s “mama” to an active-is-an-understatement 1-year-old boy. Previously, she worked in the New York publishing industry for 16 years at Good Housekeeping, Woman’s Day, Jane, Seventeen and other lifestyle titles.
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