Mike's Blog: Back in the ID Saddle Again

ID editor Mike Hockett recaps the path the led to his return to ID and what the brand has been up to since re-launching in September.

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When I left my position as editor of Industrial Distribution back in September 2018, it was one of the hardest decisions of my life. ID had been growing and cruising along well in my four years with it, and I always enjoyed covering the industrial supply market. Nevertheless, I was intrigued by an unexpected editor opportunity for an electronic engineering publication, and took it.

Mike Hockett, Industrial Distribution Managing EditorMike Hockett, Industrial Distribution Managing EditorThe next 12 months was a good run at that publication. It was an exciting new market to cover, involved a lot of traveling to electronics conventions — many in Silicon Valley that granted me a handful of escapes from the Wisconsin cold — and let me try out primarily working from home. But throughout that year, I missed the industrial supply market. I don’t have a technical background, which made the electronic engineering field and the products involved tough to absorb. On the flipside, products like fasteners, safety gloves, cutting tools and pipe fittings are much easier for someone like me to grasp, along with the factors that influence their markets.

Six months into my year at that engineering publication, I learned that ID’s parent company had folded, leaving ID and its sister manufacturing publications to suddenly cease operation. It was gut-punch. ID was my first B2B trade publication and it felt like my baby for four years. I was proud of the growth it achieved under my tenure, so it was quite a bummer to see it go dormant this past June.

But out of that setback came another unexpected opportunity. Industrial Media LLC — known for its 86-year-old publication, Industrial Equipment News, and several others — acquired ID, along with Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operation (IMPO), Manufacturing.net, Manufacturing Business Technology and Food Manufacturing. I was also the Editor of IMPO at the same time I led ID my last two years with it, while collaborating and sharing content with those other publications under their previous owner.

Industrial Media recruited me back to ID, and I was excited to re-join. The editors at Industrial Media were staff I previously worked at in my first couple years at ID, including its executive editor, Anna Wells. So in many ways, we’ve gotten the old band back together.

Since late September, we’ve re-launched the ID website (www.inddist.com) in September, produced the 2019 Big 50 List after returning the Big 50 to its traditional format, produced a November/December print issue, attended the 2019 STAFDA Convention and resumed deploying daily e-newsletters this past Monday (Dec. 2). ID is truly back in full swing.

STAFDA — held Nov. 10-12 in Nashville — provided us with a great opportunity to promote the return of ID at one of the industrial supply’s biggest events of the year, and it was great to see a lot of familiar faces and re-connect with previous contacts. We received a ton of feedback in Nashville from attendees letting us know they were happy ID is back.

For me, it was the easiest job transition I’ve ever had. Already knowing the subject matter, many of the marketing contacts and working with a familiar staff enabled me to hit the ground running. It was nice to jump right in and start writing news and working with contributors as I had done with ID previously.

Speaking of contributors, we at ID are always looking for good, educational articles and blogs for our readers. If there’s a topic you’d like to write about for the ID audience, email me at [email protected] with a brief abstract. As long as it’s non-promotional and of interest to our readers, it’s fair game. Along with that, if you’re an industrial distributor or supplier, please send me any company news you’d like us to publish — such as mergers/acquisitions, company expansion, management changes/hires, association/co-op partnerships, new product lines, etc. Let us amplify your news.

If you were a subscriber to ID’s daily e-newsletter at the time ID went dormant this past June, then you’ll still receive that newsletter, which resumed daily deployments as of Dec. 2. Like before, our newsletter is a daily mix of the latest industrial distribution market news, featured articles and blogs, new products and US manufacturing/economy news, and news impacting the greater industrial supply chain/logistics market.

You may have noticed that ID’s revamped newsletter currently doesn’t have a convenient subscribe button that takes readers directly to a form to enter their info. That’s currently being worked on and we hope to add it shortly. You can subscribe to the newsletter from the ID website, however, at this link. Likewise, if you want to subscribe to ID’s print magazine that published every other month, email our audience development manager at [email protected].

If you’re looking for ID’s 2020 media kit, shoot me an email so I can send it over. For questions regarding advertising, contact Industrial Media President Tom Lynch at [email protected].

With all that info out of the way, I’ll restate that it’s great to be back, and I hope you enjoy everything we have to offer here at ID!