RYA members magazine – redesign & refocus

A new look for the watersports bible to better reflect its members interests

Our brief

The RYA is the UK’s national body for dinghy, yacht and motor cruising, all forms of sail racing, RIBs and sports boats, windsurfing and personal watercraft. It’s also a leading representative for inland waterways cruising.

With over 110,000 members, 2,500 RYA-recognised training centres, plus 1,500 affiliated clubs that represent another 350,000 sailors, it’s a powerful voice in representing the interests of water-users. It also provides world-class training and supports sailors at every age and level, from beginners to the British Sailing Team’s Gold medal-winning Olympians.

The RYA approached us to refresh their quarterly members’ magazine, updating the design and making the content more engaging and dynamic so it better reflects the range of watersports it represents. We were also asked to maximise advertising and third-party revenue.

Our solution

Working with the RYA’s in-house editor, the Immediate team undertook a complete overhaul of the magazine, starting with a new masthead and flatplan. We introduced new fonts, sections and regular features, as well as more commissioned stories focusing on the issues affecting boaters, and members with interesting stories to tell. Bigger, better images added eye-catching appeal, and a mix of quick reads and longer features created a magazine that could be dipped into or enjoyed more slowly.

The first redesigned issue covered everything from youth windsurfing and Team GB’s sailing squad selection to advice on eco-friendly boat-maintenance. Our second issue was produced in the midst of the 2020 coronavirus outbreak, and called for editorial adaptability as first recreational boating – like all outdoor activities – was restricted, and then the Tokyo Olympic Games were postponed. The rapidly reinvented issue included interviews with boat-owners living afloat during lockdown, and a roundup of the myriad ways the RYA and boating community came together in the crisis.

The results

“The new look is appealing and I feel strengthens the bond between members and the RYA brand, something that was especially important during the last few months, when the right engagement was vital. Working with their friendly, enthusiastic team is enjoyable and straightforward… and it feels they’re now as passionate about recreational boating as we are!”
Deborah Cornick | Editor, RYA Magazine

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