In this week’s Focus we hear from Louise Hudson, editor of women’s sports magazine and website, Sportsister. Find out why Hudson originally set up Sportsister and what input from PRs she finds useful.
About the Publication:
How do you differ from other publications in your sector?
Sportsister is the first magazine dedicated to women’s sport.
Describe a typical reader for us.
Our readers tend to fall into two camps. They are either seriously sporty women, training most days, often competing at quite a high level and very knowledgeable about sport and fitness. They’re excited to finally have a magazine that speaks to them. The other are women who may not have done sport for a while, and are looking to get back into it, maybe keen to enter an event or race with friends, and need a bit of guidance and inspiration.
What stories are you most interested in covering in the publication?
We cover all aspects of women’s sport and fitness. Kit and gear guides, sport health and nutrition, sport and adventure travel, new fitness trends, training advice and tips and interviews with top sportswomen.
How does the editorial process run? Do you have specific days when you focus on different aspects of the magazine, or is the planning on a much more ad-hoc basis?
We don’t have set days. Because we have both a printed and online magazine I can work on a much more ad-hoc basis for online content whereas the printed magazine is planned much further ahead.
How do you decide the content, front covers and headines?
Our printed magazines are themed to coordinate with the time of year and the kind of sports that are most popular for that period of time. The details of which can be found on our media pack which I can send out to those who would like to see it.
Do you produce a features list?
Do you use freelance contributions, and if so, are they for any particular section/type of work?
Yes. The majority of our freelance commissions are for our Clinic section which covers advice, training, nutrition and health.
Do you work closely with PRs?
Yes, we do.
What information/input from PRs is most useful to you?
Regular updates on new products, launches and events.
What’s the best starting point for a PR who wants to tell you about their client?
Give me a call or send me an email with a brief description of the client and how you see it fitting into Sportsister editorially.
Describe a typical day at work.
As the co-founder and editor of Sportsister I’m not sure there is a typical day. We’re still a small team so it’s all hands on deck. Any given day can involve any one, or all of the following: editing features, commissioning work, planning the editorial schedule, looking at magazine art work and organising photo shoots. Outside of the office walls there are often sportswomen to interview, gym classes to trial and events to attend.
What do you love about your work?
The most rewarding part is receiving emails and telephone calls from women all across the UK saying thank you for setting up Sportsister. Women’s sport doesn’t always get much coverage in the media and suffers from a bit of an image problem. It’s great to hear women and girls acknowledging how needed a magazine like Sportsister is.
Where have you worked previously, and how did you end up in your current position?
I worked for several years as a fashion trends forecaster for an online business to business service called WGSN. It was my job to identify and analyse emerging trends and gaps in the market for big brands. It’s here that I met my Sportsister co-founder Danielle Sellwood and we discovered how lacking the magazine world was of a title that celebrated women’s sport.
If you weren’t doing this, what would you do?
I can’t imagine not working in this industry. I’ve always wanted to work in media ever since I was eleven years old and announced to my mum that one day I would be editor of Vogue! But after stints in the fashion world, I’m happy now to be in the sports industry.
What media do you seek out first thing in the morning?
I scour the sports sections of all the major newspapers and sport websites most mornings.
What’s your idea of a relaxing day off?
Ideally I would stretch a day off into a weekend and go away somewhere! I love to travel, near or far, and am always keen to discover new places.
[img|jpg|Sportsister’s Louise Hudson]