Expect more, again

by By: Lou Smyrlis

Ten years ago, when I first wrote in this space for Truck News after being appointed editorial director, I wrote that “In a business climate as turbulent and as quickly changing as today’s, to stand still is to fall behind.”

The reason I was appointed editorial director back then was to emphasize an important evolution in our own change strategy: the bringing of all our transportation products under one umbrella. We were confident this strategy would place us in the best position to address the changing needs of our readers and advertisers and summed up what you should expect from us going forward in one word: MORE.

Today, I’m writing in this space, which has been home for a decade, to announce another appointment and a further evolution of our change strategy. As of this issue I have the honour of replacing my mentor and friend Rob Wilkins as publisher. After more than 30 years in the publishing industry, Rob has decided to retire. I wish him well in this next chapter of his life and owe him a great debt of gratitude. Rob led our group through great change and steered us through the turbulence of the worst recession since the Great Depression. It’s a testament to his leadership and the wisdom of our change strategy that while other industry publishers were forced to shut down magazines and some media outlets disappeared altogether, we not only survived, but thrived. We are larger today than a decade ago.

On that day 10 years ago, Truck News and Truck West became part of an expanded family of editorial products which included Fleet Executive, our magazine geared towards the interests of fleet owners; Canadian Transportation & Logistics, which addressed the needs of shippers; a research arm to gather objective, fact-based information on key industry trends, two Web sites and two weekly newsletters. For the first time, our five editors and our army of professional writers and industry experts across the country began working together towards our mandate to provide our readers and advertisers with the industry’s best source of information on the issues that drove their decision-making. By working together, we felt there was no other news source in the Canadian transportation market that could match our reach and access to resources.

By leveraging our strength in numbers, we were able to pioneer new ways to reach out to you. Our award-winning WebTV show, TMTV, is not only a favourite on our Web site, but is approaching half a million views on our YouTube channel. Our social media presence – Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn – is second to none in the industry. We moved up to a daily e-newsletter to keep you up to date on the latest news happenings, and added several other newsletters for those with specific interests. It’s safe to say we have conducted, and shared, more research on the transportation industry over the past 10 years than any other industry organization by a long stretch. And our Surface Transportation Summit is becoming recognized as one of the best educational and networking opportunities in transportation today.

My mandate as publisher and editorial director (hey, I love my old job too much to give it up) is to take the next steps towards becoming a true multimedia provider of industry information. And I plan on being very busy in the years to come.

I’m going to end this column, the same way I ended it 10 years ago.

To our readers, our advertisers, and even our competitors, I will say this: Keep an eye on us. We will surprise you. We will inform you. We will impress you. What you can and should expect from Truck News and our group of transportation magazines can be summed in a single word: MORE.

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