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MAGAZINE SHORTENS NAME TO EXPAND
GLOBAL AUDIENCE INTEREST

Troy, MI — October 1, 2004American Woman Road & Travel, a 16-year old consumer magazine that specializes in automotive, travel and safety content for women consumers, has shortened its name to expand its reach to a growing and more universally diverse audience of women consumers.

According to publisher, Courtney Caldwell, "Since converting to an online magazine [from print] in 2000 we've seen increased interest and subscriptions from consumers around the world. Our goal was to shorten the name to not only reflect our URL, which is more descriptive www.roadandtravel.com, but also to expand our reach into the global market."

The change was also in response to national women's groups who, for years, have opposed the use of the word 'woman' in the title. Since RTM targets upscale professional women, groups have voiced their concerns that this audience of readers does not need the word woman in the title of a magazine to understand that the content targets them. As one group chimed, "It's as if to say women are too dumb to understand a magazine is aimed at them unless the word woman is in the title. It's really about how a publication is marketed."

Many have pointed out that titles such as Vogue, Self and Redbook don't have the word woman in their titles yet women clearly understand that these magazines are aimed at them. Conversely, several noted that Motor Trend, Automobile, and Car and Driver don't have the word 'men' in their titles yet men clearly understand these publications target them. "Although unintentional, we were essentially being sexist towards the very group we were targeting," concedes Caldwell.

With its 16-year history, a strong identity, and marketing efforts still heavily aimed at women, ROAD & TRAVEL Magazine hasn't missed a beat. Content, demographics, and mission all remain the same. "In fact," adds Caldwell, "in the first month of the name variation, RTM traffic jumped by more than 33,000 impressions and received a significant increase in subscriptions from around the world."

The shorter version of the name became official on July 1, 2004 with the appearance of the logo reflecting the URL version, however, the logo remains in the same font and overall style as the former logo. "We wanted the evolution to be subtle, and not draw attention away from our mission or content," states Caldwell. It seems to be working since neither consumer or industry have barely noticed. "If anything," adds Caldwell, "not only have we seen an increase in traffic and subscriptions but we've also experienced a newfound interest from advertisers."

"We relied on the strength of our brand, the magazine's content and mission, and our continued marketing efforts through Google, Overture and media partners to not only maintain RTM's current audience but also to expand its reach into other parts of the world," Caldwell says. The strategy is working.

The mission of ROAD & TRAVEL Magazine? To provide content and resources from which women can make informed and intelligent decisions regarding automotive purchases, travel plans, and their personal safety on the road.

"Since safety is the number one concern women have when either buying a new car or going on a trip we've found that additional added value to global reach is that women around the world now have access to information that will arm them with knowledge to help keep them safe on the road, no matter where they live," adds Caldwell.

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