Commentary: Now's The Time

Commentary: Now's The Time
Photo: Lee Thomas
Ray Paulick
Editor-in-Chief

Beginning Aug. 1, subscribers to The Blood-Horse will have access to BloodhorseNOW.com, an exciting new product we hope will change how the Thoroughbred industry gets its news, data, and analysis on an ongoing basis.

Notice I didn’t say “daily.” That’s because, unlike existing news products delivered once a day, BloodhorseNOW.com will be a vibrant, constantly updated online resource pulling in the latest information from racetracks, auction rings, and breeding sheds. In other words, we don’t think you should have to wait until tomorrow to get today’s news. In a digital age that has revolutionized how we communicate and gather intelligence, we recognize that you deserve access to important information now, as it happens. For the convenience of those who want a concise daily printout, we also will offer a handy, easy-to-read version on a nightly basis. You’ll receive an e-mail reminder when it’s ready each day to download from BloodhorseNOW.com.

This new product wasn’t just designed by us with our readers in mind. Hundreds of you played a part in the process, either through one-on-one interviews, surveys asking for input on what aspects of the industry are most important to you, or through focus groups conducted during BloodhorseNOW.com’s development stages.

In short, BloodhorseNOW.com is your product. It will feature news headlines, entries, and race results from around the world, international auction results and analysis, pedigree insights, unique and provocative statistics, and much more. All of this will be generated by the staff and contributors to The Blood-Horse, a name the Thoroughbred industry has trusted since 1916 as an industry-owned source of accurate, reliable, and unbiased information.

That staff has grown as a result of BloodhorseNOW.com and our recognition that the Thoroughbred industry, in many respects, is no different than the world of finance, travel, or any other business that is relying on the Internet and other digital communication tools for growth. The digital trend is picking up speed, not slowing after a decade of unprecedented growth.

A new division, the Digital Media Group, has been created at Blood-Horse Publications. BloodhorseNOW.com is the first of many products that will be developed by this division, which consists of writers, editors, researchers, programmers, and Web designers and producers. Eric Mitchell, a former senior writer and research director at The Blood-Horse, is executive editor of the Digital Media Group.

Ongoing enhancements and improvements to Bloodhorse NOW.com will be made as we move forward, based on additional feedback we receive from you. Please let us know what you think of this new product and what we can do to make it even better. Contact either Eric Mitchell (emitchell@bloodhorse.com) or me (rpaulick@bloodhorse.com).

BloodhorseNOW.com will not be available until Aug. 1, but you can go to the Web site today, sign up using the customer ID from your mailing label for The Blood-Horse, and view a demo of the product. Remember, you must be a subscriber to The Blood-Horse to have access to BloodhorseNOW.com.

This new product is not being developed at the expense of The Blood-Horse, the industry’s leading weekly magazine and the flagship of the publishing company owned by the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association. Results from recent readership surveys have shown our average reader spends more than 100 minutes with The Blood-Horse each week, a number that is higher today than it was a decade ago when the digital revolution was in its infancy. That’s a tribute to the writers, editors, photographers, and other members of the staff who understand the challenges that print publications face today and are responding to keep the magazine fresh and interesting.

Our goal with BloodhorseNOW.com, just as it is with the weekly magazine, is to provide accurate, reliable, and unbiased information on a timely basis. Timeliness has never been more important, and no product on the market will be timelier than BloodhorseNOW.com.

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