I just returned from visiting a wheat field in Manhattan-New York that is, not Kansas. As I walked through this temporary wheat field staged by the Wheat Foods Council, I couldn't help but notice a few Wall Street types eagerly reading the signs and inspecting the wheat at its various stages. Are they ready to cash in what's left of their portfolio and fill that yearning to get back in touch with the land? Are their companies ready to show them the way out the door and into the fields? Okay, I doubt any of these folks will be trading in their work suits for work boots, but the turbulence that has hit the market has forced people to realize we are living in extraordinary times-as if the commodities crisis and the surge in oil prices weren't enough.
By this time next month we will have been through an historic election, with a record number of young and old voters casting ballots for a ticket with either the first African-American president or the first female vice president. Many young voters are receiving e-mails and text messages from the Obama campaign, older voters are tuning in to dozens of broadcast media outlets-each with their own agenda-and all voters have seen countless parodies of the candidates on television and YouTube. All of this represents a significant change in how marketers reach us, how we consume information and how we make our decisions. So, what will you do?
Will you wait for the economic storm to pass? Will you sit back and hope the next leaders of our country take care of you, your business and our industry? Or, will you focus on the best practices for your business-whether product innovation, strategic sales and marketing or operational efficiency. History suggests, and a recent study from American Business Media supports, that companies who continue to advertise during times of economic uncertainty experience significant business growth at the expense of their competition and past the period of economic worry. So, I know what I would do.
At Baking Management, our greatest challenges and opportunities are to stay ahead of the curve in the world of new media, continue to deliver essential market knowledge and insights to our readers and to create smart and efficient marketing strategies for our advertisers. Next month, you will see a new Baking Management arrive at your office. Totally redesigned and updated, the new look is clean and fresh and offers a business-like approach to the content and layout of the pages. In the coming weeks you also will see new category newsletters arrive via e-mail and new digital components added to our Web site, offering viewers exciting opportunities to interact and offering marketers new ways to reach their customers. As the new Baking Management is unveiled both in print and online, I welcome your thoughts and comments.