The Big Question

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Q. How do you think the latest chills in the economy will affect business publications?

A. As advertisers make tough decisions, they're going to go to the proven players in the category with strong legacy brands that are also thinking about the future. Despite what you say about the economy, there is this new "age of affluence." And business books represent some of the most affluent titles in business media, and their audiences online represent some of the most sought-after premium audiences on the Web.

Technology [advertising] took a hit this year in our category, and we all hope that it's cyclical. To the extent that technology swings back and forth between targeting the C-suite and the chief technology officer, I don't think technology budgets can lose sight of the fact that the ultimate decision-maker is in the corner office. The major players in the business-book category capture that C-suite.

Automotive [advertising] took a hit but we're starting to see a rebound for next year, as Detroit tries to figure out the right balance between digital and print. The financial category—speaking of this whole notion of this new age of affluence—was up this year, at least for our title, and the whole lifestyle category is going to grow.

We all marvel at the fact that Rupert Murdoch paid $5 billion for Dow Jones, that Conde Nast is getting into the [business] category and that Fox News has launched a business channel. The business category as a whole represents a flight to quality, and that's a good thing as you ride out what may or may not be an economic storm. … Quality audiences will be attracted to a quality branding environment.

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