'Parade' uses Jamie McMurray's car as part of rebranding effort
By: By Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service, Superior Telegram
It might seem unusual for a magazine to use a NASCAR Sprint Cup car as part of a rebranding effort, but that's exactly what "Parade" did.
The FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks on June 2 happened to coincide with the launch of a new logo for the magazine and its web site, and Parade used the hood of Jamie McMurray's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet as a high-speed method of unveiling it to a national audience.
NASCAR Wire Service writer Reid Spencer caught up with Parade editor-in-chief Maggie Murphy after the drivers' meeting at Dover on Sunday to talk about the synergy between the magazine and NASCAR racing.
NASCAR WIRE: Why adopt a new logo, and why now?
MURPHY: The logo has been part of our transformation, in terms of moving to a more sort of modern place. We're relaunching our web site today (June 2), and along with a new visual presence, it felt like it was time to update the logo. We'd been using the one that we were using up until last Sunday for 30 years. When we looked to redo it, we said, 'Let's look back, and let's look forward.' So we took some influences from the past and moved it forward, and I think it's just part of building your community and your brand.
NASCAR WIRE: What drew you to NASCAR as a way to help launch the logo?
MURPHY: Amy Crossman, who's our VP of marketing, is a big NASCAR fan, and she realized that there was a race on June 2, and we just thought NASCAR and Parade -- it's about community, it's about America. It just felt perfect together, like peanut butter and jelly. So we hit the gas pedal, and we called, and the NASCAR folks were fantastic. Jamie agreed to drive, and the logo looks great, and we're just excited to be a part of this community.
NASCAR WIRE: I understand the charity that's involved with the race is meaningful to you.
MURPHY: Personally, I have a niece who's autistic, so I'm really, really happy to be here today with Autism Speaks. That means something as well, and it turned out to be serendipitous in all the great ways.
NASCAR WIRE: Is Parade still the most widely circulated magazine in the United States?
MURPHY: Parade is the most widely read magazine in America. We still reach 670 newspapers. We reach 32.9 million pass-along readers -- 59 million people -- so in terms of a brand that's big and seen, we're seen and we're big, but I think we're also local. So many people get Parade in their newspapers and think it's from their local newspaper. So we're national and we're local. I think that's why we work so well with NASCAR. It's national, but it's about community as well.
NASCAR WIRE: I grew up with Parade, and I have to get my weekly dose of Marilyn vos Savant.
MURPHY: You're not the only one who's said that to me. Actually, the publisher of the Washington Post said, 'Maggie, whatever you do, do not touch Marilyn vos Savant.' She has her allegiance, and she's a lovely woman, and she's definitely a part of Parade.