The move is a gloomy way to start the new week, particularly because last week was so atrocious. The print business last week was inundated with word of layoffs coming from companies and products such as Time Inc., Gannett, American Express Publishing, The Los Angeles Times, Conde Nast Portfolio, Men's Vogue and Radar. Media sellers of all kinds are feeling pressure from the sputtering economy and the financial meltdown, but print publishing is seeing those forces exacerbate the trends already pulling readers and advertisers toward digital media.
According to a press release from the company, integrated sales and marketing responsibilities currently handled by Rodale Marketing Solutions will now be led by the sales and marketing teams at each of Rodale's brands. Information technology and operations functions will also be transferred to outside vendors.
Magazine publishing is just one part of Rodale's business. The company also publishes books, such as "An Inconvenient Truth" by Al Gore and "The Abs Diet for Women" by David Zinczenko; provides direct marketing services using a database of 26 million names; operates websites including BiggestLoserClub.com; and offers custom publishing to marketers.