What’s the Point of Being Published?

When approached by an editor about collaborating on a feature article, some machine shops are hesitant at first, curious about what the return on their investment of time will be.

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A healthy article review process insures both accuracy and that nothing proprietary will appear in print, resulting in a feature that can be used as a powerful marketing tool.

Every trade editor has experienced this scenario: A shop is performing a fascinating machining process, or has developed an incredibly efficient cell, or introduced impressive automation and robotics into its operations, or overcome a machining challenge and even entered new markets by investing in new technology, and they would make an excellent subject for a feature article. But they hesitate to share their internal activities with the world in the pages of a magazine. This is a perfectly natural concern, and one that successful editors had better learn to address early in their career if they want to write about the really cool stuff.

I had such a conversation with a shop owner just the other day, and it put me in mind of a talk I once gave to a group of cutting tool salespeople. They would identify great story leads while meeting with their customers, and they wanted to develop skills in helping them overcome their trepidation and to realize the many benefits associated with being the subject of a magazine article. The points I made included being able to share the feature with existing and potential clients, helping raise awareness when entering new markets, and even supporting employee recruitment and retention. I summed up these points and more in this column on the subject which you might find useful when you find yourself in the same situation. In addition, the editors of PM are always available to discuss our review process, which is both transparent and robust, to anyone interested in learning more.