Do you yearn for a wedding magazine that features brides just like you? Realistic budgets, creative ideas, weddings that you wish you’d been invited to? Is practical, actionable wedding planning advice something you crave? Are you sick of trawling through page after page of advertisements from companies you aren’t interested in and products you can’t afford?
ME TOO, which is why I started Rock n Roll Bride in the first place!
Today I can finally reveal the cover of the brand new issue – Isn’t she a beaut!? Again, we have a gorgeous real bride on the cover, Julia, who’s Queensland wedding is featured inside. From ceremonies in rainstorms to puppy bridesmaids and drag queen officiants, issue 5 features some hella inspiring real weddings.
But we’re not all about the pretty, inside you’ll also find some awesome articles written by some fantastic contributors including my own mum (yes, really!) There’s some killer photography advice for those of you who are having winter weddings, affordable décor ideas and DIY projects a-plenty. I don’t want to give too much away, but believe me when I say this will be the best £4.99 you’ll spend all month!
Issue 5 will be in stores on November 10th, but the good news doesn’t end there. As well as WH Smiths and independents, the magazine will now be sold in Sainbury’s supermarkets up and down the UK!!
While we would love to be stocked in every single shop in the country (we’re getting there – sloooowly!) if you can’t find one near you, you can always order online, and today we’re opening up pre-orders in our redesigned shop page (thanks Gareth!). Pre-ordered copies will be shipped out first, meaning by reserving yours now you may even receive your copy before it hits the stores.
Did you know we create a bi-monthly magazine? Of course you did, because between you all you bought 1,000 copies through our website within two days of its official release date. Sure, we had pre-orders up for a while before hand but we didn’t expect to sell even half of that over the next two months! And while this is undoubtedly great news it came with some real challenges and forced us to scale up our logistics on short notice. Here’s how we did it.
From 2011 to 2014 we were self-publishing, self-distributing an annually produced magazine. It was a labour of love, spawned from a weird idea, which furnished us with far more praise than we ever expected. The business model was pretty basic: We would print 1,000 copies per issue and they would gradually sell over a 12-month period until they were all gone. Two or three times a week I would take a trip to our local Post Office to send out the orders. The counter staff there got to know me well, they knew what I was sending and between us the process became relatively efficient for its scale.
But regardless, there were times when that arrangement would prove problematic. For instance, with every new release we would have a flood of orders. The 2013 release saw us receive 198 orders on launch day alone. When I walked into the Post Office that day the manager looked understandably distraught. He put a staff member on my delivery and asked me to come back a few hours later to pay the… *ahem* sizable bill.
This all changed in January, when we started working with a 3rd party publisher. Along with getting our magazine in high-street stores like WHSmiths, their distributors would hold all the stock and take responsibility for shipping out the online orders – no longer would our dining table be a small-scale warehouse for packing and shipping magazines! Unfortunately, the appeal of leaving it to somebody else soon wore off as customer satisfaction hit an all-time low. Every week we were dealing with customers’ who were waiting for their orders to arrive. And it’s not as if there were thousands and thousands of magazines to ship, we were only taking in the order of a few hundred online sales per issue at the time. Yet in our four year magazine-selling-history we had never had so many customer service problems as we did during the first half of 2015.
So what was going wrong? There were two main problems, first was the sheer number of people involved in shipping the product. It had gone from one (i.e. me) to a dozen, spread through three different companies. Any customer queries had to propegate through the entire chain before the buyer had so much as a response, let alone a resolution, to their questions. The second problem was economics, it was only cost effective for the distributor to send out our customers’ orders once a fortnight which meant some people had to wait nearly two weeks after making payment before their magazine even left the warehouse! It doesn’t matter what size your business is, this just isn’t good enough in 2015.
Rock n Roll Bride magazine is an unstoppable force. Every single day I receive comments and emails from brides and grooms that are thrilled that it exists. There is no other wedding magazine that caters to couples wanting to plan a wedding that’s a bit left field: From extravagant Alice in Wonderland weddings to quirky pub parties, from budget backyard shindigs to achingly cool elopements, and from gothic wonders to collaborative DIY celebrations! I am extremely proud that Rock n Roll Bride shows such diversity.
One of the things I am most passionate about, besides showcasing beautiful, achievable and unique wedding content, it being able to use the magazine to support small or indie businesses. The Etsy sellers, the part timers, the babes working their butts off from their back bedrooms (I’m with you on that one!) Unlike other wedding magazines with fancy offices and massive overheads, our team is small meaning our costs are (comparatively) low. It is really important to me that we can offer ad options that the businesses my readers really want to know about can actually afford.
It’s all very well and good having the most amazing business idea ever, but if no-one knows about it, it might as well not exist. So if you make something awesome, or offer a killer service that you want brides and grooms to know about, then Rock n Roll Bride magazine is the place for you to be featured.
This is your opportunity to find the kind of kick ass clients you’ve always dreamed about.