Posted: October 23, 2014, 4:51 p.m.
by Jean Faircloth.
A new buzz is sweeping the nation from the South, and it’s not quite as slow as most people expect.
Launched in 2007, Garden & Gun is waltzing to the top of the magazine industry as it meets the necessities for a successful brand with that oh-so-loved Southern charm. The land, the people, their lifestyle and their heritage are now intriguing more than one million Garden & Gun readers all over the country.
In order to have a successful brand, a company must thoroughly understand its target audience.
How better to understand your audience than to be your audience?
Garden & Gun’s headquarters is located in a quaint, antique building directly on the famous King Street in Charleston, South Carolina. Many of the writers live in the South and strongly embrace it. They learn about the best-kept Southern secrets, such as a tradition or a favorite recipe, and write about them.
The magazine feels no need to “keep up with the Joneses” because it simply is the Joneses. Garden & Gun has a high-end reader clientele. This type of reader entices many upscale companies across the country from Peter Millar to Ralph Lauren to Porsche and Land Rover. These companies would kill to be featured in the magazine, and many are willing to pay to ensure that they are included. They simply want to be a part of its excellence.
Uniqueness and competitiveness
You cannot be afraid of what already exists; just simply raise the bar!
Bare feet, overalls and missing teeth are just a few of the many negative characteristics of that Southern stereotype. It has been the favorite angle to approach in portraying the South. The media projects these exaggerations to induce humor and successfully brands the South with a misleading reputation.
However, Garden & Gun disregards this negative impression and unveils the best of the South with class. The style of writing is relatable and fun, with a lighthearted voice that enables readers to laugh as their everyday questions are answered. The titles of every section, such as “Talk of the South,” “Good Hunting,” “Columns” and “Due South,” are also quite intriguing.
The magazine’s reputation has been built throughout its many years of stunning spreads and beautifully written articles. Garden & Gun’s standard is excellence in quality, and it seems to meet this again and again.
Once a magazine’s quality and format are established, it must be kept at that standard, or consumers will be disappointed.
The stories change, but the Garden & Gun readers know that they will always be able to find the same genres in the magazine. A familiar reader will be able to flip to a favorite section without skipping a beat.
Passion, exposure and leadership
Passion behind a brand is the driving factor for success.
Garden & Gun’s passion is proven through its determination to not settle for being only a high-class magazine. It also provides events for readers that incorporate the companies that choose to advertise in Garden & Gun. If a company purchases a certain number of pages in the issue, Garden & Gun promises to incorporate that product or venue in one of its events.
At these events, relationships are built between the readers, Garden & Gun, and its featured products and places. The experience enables the readers’ senses — smell, taste, sight, hearing and touch — to all be activated, and as the events are routinely immaculate, the readers’ experience creates a loyalty and love for the brand.
The final part of the cycle is the new enticement for the readers to always stay attune to the website and magazine to see what event is yet to come.
Garden & Gun… Well done!