The dearth of African American magazines on the market helps them make more of an impact. By focusing on the topics and issues that the African American community deals with on a national or worldwide level, these publications often turn into education magazines, regardless of the variety of articles they contain.
For numerous reasons, the publishing industry is only now beginning to realize that the African America magazine reader population is underserved. In particular, when looking for advice on growing or better serving their customers African American business owners have very few places to turn. Because of this, even the slightest focus on the African American community is an educational opportunity.
An African American magazine focuses solely on the African American entrepreneur, developer or professional. In the pages of these magazines, African American magazine readers find the information they seek presented and discussed in a manner applicable to their situation. When providing pertinent information, an entire magazine dedicated to a needy readership group becomes an inspiration to others because a reader’s desires and intentions are put on paper, making them suddenly appear obtainable.
Educational magazines are all too proud to tout their existence of being dedicated strictly to typical educational formats. These magazines provide basic information on obtaining and succeeding in training and degree programs, and potentially even serve individuals in the market for continuing education courses. What purely educational magazines rarely provide, however, is real-life advice.
Many publishers and writers overlook the fact that non-education articles teach readers. All too often, the article dedicated to an intern’s experience on Capitol Hill is not looked to as informing business owners about the public relations and marketing benefits of hiring interns. Education magazines, therefore, not need be strictly educational. African American magazine articles covering important African American political figures or business owners provide readers with a chance to identify thought patterns, behaviors and strategic moves applicable to their goals. Size and content of an article are often irrelevant to the information it provides: a 500 word article covering best business practices can provide less information than a 200 word blurb about a local businesswoman’s updated business plan.
Aside from the fact that no educational magazines dedicated to African Americans exist, traditional educational magazines overlook the particular issues African American students face. Due to this, African American magazine readers must turn elsewhere to have their needs addressed. While educational magazines fail in this regard, African American magazines are all too ready pick up the slack; they just prefer to do so with a different twist.
Furthermore, the fact that the magazine itself exists at all is not to be overlooked for the inspiration and education it provides. The magazine’s foundations, pathway to creation, financial support and daily operations offer yet another resource for African American professionals. Just as what lies between the page is an education magazine, so too is the front and back covers. African American magazines simultaneously provide education and inspiration.