A magazine with a rich history is continuing to lay the foundation for the future. Farm Journal magazine has a new look that editor Rhonda Brooks said caters to what farmers want.
“We need to make magazines fit into how farmers want to get news,” she said. “That’s quickly. Farmers love charts, graphs and details they can absorb quickly. This redesign was our effort to do that — and we're excited to be rolling it out.”
Brooks said it’s an exciting time, as a magazine redesign is rare.
“This is only the 12th redesign we’ve done in our 142 -year history,” she said.
A rare occurrence, but one Farm Journal’s Charlene Finck said helps add to the company’s rich history.
“Farm Journal was founded almost 142 years ago, in Philadelphia, to serve farmers within a horseback ride of Philadelphia,” said Finck, division president, Farm Journal.
The company and magazine still hold the same core values they did then—values brought forth by Farm Journal founder Wilmer Atkinson, Finck said.
“He was always advocating for what was right for farmers in agriculture, everything from women's suffrage to adopting new technologies and using every tool to be good stewards of the land, your family and your livelihood,” she explained. “That was quite visionary for a Quaker farmer back in 1877. It's made it real easy to walk in his shoes and to follow his vision all these decades later, because it's still relevant. It's still what resonates with farmers and ranchers across the country.”
Having the foresight and covering issues that matter most to farmers are something Farm Journal’s Doug Catt said continues to make the magazine relevant to producers.
“We give farmers content they can use to thrive in what is now a difficult farm economy,” said Catt, crop division vice president, Farm Journal. “We know it’s a difficult time, and we're trying to do everything we can to help them improve their operations.”
Finck said the content within a magazine issue can differ from farm to farm — something Farm Journal has been doing to tailor to an individual farmer’s wants and needs since the 1980s.
“That has helped underpin the relevance of our content,” she said. “It’s what made us the farmer’s favorite.”
Building off the vision is embedded into everything Farm Journal does. Managing editor Katie Humphreys said the new look was driven by a specific purpose.
“We serve farmers, and every element you see in the new design, whether it's a word, a picture or the overall design from front to back, was done with a lot of thought, a lot of effort. We ultimately think the redesign will help readers absorb the information we provide,” she said. “If they want to learn more, we drive them to AgWeb.”
Farm Journal has seen decades of change, adapting the content to fit the issues that matter most to readers.
“I hope they walk away with information they can use,” Brooks said. “A lot of us farm, and we’re in agriculture. We have dirty boots, just like farmers have dirty boots, and we want them to walk away with news they can use and information that's really relevant to where they are today.”
A historic milestone rooted in more than a century of success.
“I think Wilmer Atkinson would be very pleased to see we are still honoring his vision and delivering it to mailboxes, so that it's news you can use the minute you get it,” Finck said.
A magazine striving to be the farmer’s favorite for decades to come.