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Meredith Corporation Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by
| Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.

Question 1 of 30

How would you increase magazine subscriptions in an online-centric world?

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Meredith Corporation Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    How would you increase magazine subscriptions in an online-centric world?

      In a world immersed in online content, the hiring authority would like to know how you would capture the interest of new magazine subscribers. Discuss one idea you have that would help print subscriptions to stand out in an online world.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Print media is still very relevant, especially when a publication attracts a particular niche. In an online-centric world, I would place focus on the nostalgia that comes from reading your favorite magazine, along with the fact that Meredith has been a trusted magazine publisher since 1902."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Many people love the offering of traditional magazines such as 'clippable' coupons, perfume samples, and the feeling of flipping through the pages. To increase magazine subscriptions, I would focus on those offerings, that are not available with online methods."

  2. 2.

    In a streaming-centric time, how can Meredith increase the number of listeners to our radio stations?

      The interviewer would like to know what your approach would be, should you be the decision maker on how to draw in a more extensive audience base. Before your interview, take the time to research some radio marketing ideas, read some case studies, or dissect the approach of your favorite radio station that you know is nailing it in the radio game. Your plan doesn't have to be air-tight, but it should be thoughtful and engaging.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "If I were in charge of increasing the listenership of a Meredith radio station, I would cross-promote with other stations. This approach is one that is common in satellite radio, and from what I have seen, is very effective in traditional radio as well."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Three words: contests, contests, contests! I was listening to a station in the past that offered a $10K prize on the first of every month. Stats show that this contest increased their listenership by a whopping 27% by the second month. This contest was very generous; however, the upside from their advertisers far outweighed the cost of running the monthly promotion."

  3. 3.

    What is the key to success for a publisher in this digital era?

      The digital world is transforming traditional publishing, and the interviewer wants to know what you believe to be the key to success amidst this shift. Discuss what you think a publishing company should do, in this digital era, to remain successful and relevant. Keep your response positive rather than shifting into negative language. For instance, mention what is great about this digital era versus focusing on the hardships.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe the key to success for a publisher in this digital era is to remain relevant in your core area, while also exploring the ways that digital can complement your existing products. If you are a traditional print magazine, for instance, why not explore the impact that a hashtag campaign on Twitter or Instagram can make. As in any industry, it's critical that we remain up to date with technology so that we are always meeting our audience where they are showing up."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "The key to success in publishing, and many other industries is listening to your customers and taking action on what they are teaching you. For instance, in the publishing industry, it's critical that we deliver works on topics that people are searching for, and seeking out. We can accomplish this approach through surveys, polls, purchased data, and even some analytics on Google algorithms."

  4. 4.

    What methods do you use, to work within a brand's voice consistently?

      When working on digital content, you will be asked to remain in line with whichever Meredith brand(s) you will be working on. The interviewer would like to know how you ensure that you maintain a brand's voice, consistently delivering it across multiple platforms or channels. Discuss your best methods for preserving the brand voice, and be sure to express that you understand the importance of this skill.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "One tool that my current employer uses, and I find to be very helpful, is our internal Style Guide. This style guide is a tool for writers, producers, and creatives of all kinds, to refer to when they are unsure if their idea is on-track with the company's brand. Another method that I refer to often is to first storyboard the 'voice' that I want before beginning a project. I can create a clear narrative around the marketing effort very early on in the project."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I fully understand how critical it is to work within a brand's voice consistently throughout a project. One method that I enjoy using is to create a guide that outlines the jargon or colloquialisms that are acceptable to use in the campaign. Somewhat like a style guide, but easier to refer back to. I also feel it's important to make the voice of a brand a company-wide initiative so that co-workers can check in with each other to ensure all work is consistent and the best it can be."

  5. 5.

    Where do you believe the magazine industry will be in 5 years? Support your response.

      The interviewer wants to know that you believe in the longevity of Meredith and the future of the magazine industry. Of course, since you are interviewing for a magazine publication, you want to keep your response positive. Be sure to support your opinion with the research you have done in the magazine publishing industry.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I was recently reading an article on trends and facts in the magazine industry, from a journalism publication which had some powerful ideas on the future of magazines. Even though the purchase of physical magazines has declined over the past 15 years, the number of visitors coming to a magazines' website had increased exponentially. I believe that alternative print publications will exist for many years to come; however, many mags will begin to rely more heavily on their digital subscriber base who still go to them for reliable, consistent, and trustworthy content."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe that magazine subscribers are also going to ask for digital subscription options, allowing them to pivot between the two mediums. Although sales of traditional print mags have decreased over the years, discerning readers will still turn to these traditional methods for reliable news. This engagement may be more digital and online, as time goes on."

  6. 6.

    With which publishing categories are you most familiar? How will this knowledge help you in this position with Meredith?

      There is a multitude of publishing categories in which you could bring experience. This experience includes magazines, physical books, ebooks, catalogs, online publishers, newspapers, and more. Discuss with the interviewer the areas which you are most experienced. If you want to dive deeper into genres, you can certainly do that as well; especially if your experience is related to the publishing activities at Meredith. Be sure to sound confident, and finish your answer by tying in how this experience will make you successful in your new role.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am most familiar with print magazine publishing, working, often in the parenting and cooking realm. This experience will help me at Meredith because I know how to move content that appeals to a wide audience with significant age and interest gap."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Although I am new to publishing, I have the most experience reading and identify best with fashion and lifestyle publications. The mediums that I am most familiar with include online magazines and other digital content. I have a great eye for design and layout for online publications and believe I could offer Meredith fresh insight."

  7. 7.

    Walk me through your experience with YouTube and Instagram's IGTV programming. Which platform do you prefer?

      Many digital content creators have been having the 'YouTube versus IGTV' conversation as of late. Before your interview, check out various Meredith channels on each platform to see if you can recognize if they have a preference between the two. Be sure to keep your response positive, providing a well-researched argument for and against, each platform.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am more familiar with YouTube, considering it has been around for much longer; however, I believe that they each have their relevance without having to be direct competitors. Kind of like Coke and Sprite. There is room for each of them to be a favorite in their own time. I do not believe that IGTV will replace YouTube; rather, I think they compliment each other. IGTV offers more on-trend videos, where YouTube is great for longer-form media such as videos, movies, and series watching."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I do lean more towards IGTV because I am very familiar with it; having immersed myself in the Instagram feature the moment it came out. With nearly a billion monthly users, I feel that there is a ton of content online. I will say that it's harder to filter through what you want, leaving YouTube an easier user experience when it comes to watching specific content that a user is eager to find."

  8. 8.

    Name for me one effective method for driving audience engagement in the television industry.

      The interviewer wants to see that you readily have insight when it comes to audience engagement in the television industry. Meredith is all about leveraging multiple channels to drive engagement. Discuss one approach you would take for increasing audience engagement if you were the successful candidate.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "If given the opportunity to drive audience engagement for a Meredith owned television station, the first place I would look is where your target audience spends their most time, which I believe to be Instagram. I would create a unique hashtag along with a contest for free tickets to a release party or another coveted prize. I would use the opportunity to create a conversation around Meredith's latest television show or another exciting release."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe in a multi-channel approach, so I would begin by collaborating with Meredith' social media and digital departments to make engaging 15-second videos, like a series of teasers, for publishing on IGTV, YouTube, and other social networking sites where video content is king."

  9. 9.

    What is the most important KPI for an advertising client?

      Meredith has many paying advertisers, both on and offline. Advertising clients look at a multitude of KPIs when they invest in advertising efforts. When it comes to digital, some crucial factors are:

      - Click-Through Rates (CTR)
      - Cost Per Action (CPA)
      - Conversion Rate
      - Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

      ...and many more! Then, when it comes to print or traditional advertising, the KPIs change slightly, and there is more focus placed on things like response rates. Discuss with the interviewer what you believe to be the most important KPI for an advertising client.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I believe that the most important KPI for an advertising client is the Conversion Rate. The entire reason we launch effective advertising campaigns is to gain a larger customer base. Other KPIs are significant; however, I believe the Conversion Rate to be the most important one."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my opinion, sales revenue is the true indicator of advertising campaigns efficacy. Every advertising client should be able to know and understand if their inbound marketing campaign has brought them more business."

  10. 10.

    What do you know about the nature of print advertising?

      The interviewer would like to know your current knowledge level when it comes to print advertising. Most magazines rely heavily on the revenue that comes from advertising, so it's essential that you bring an understanding of how this style of advertising operates.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "The whole 'print is dead' argument that some people make, when they argue against investing in print advertising is one hurdle that I love to overcome when it comes to print advertising. By nature, a magazine is more targeted to a specific audience, grabbing their attention for longer, ensuring that readers pay better attention to a printed ad than one they come across online. I believe there is strength in targeted print ads with great imagery and smart copy."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I know that print advertising is heavily trusted by well-established companies looking to advertise to a highly specific audience. Print advertising, when executed correctly, can have an incredibly effective impact and strong ROI."

  11. 11.

    What methods do you use to determine winning advertisements from the advertisement flops?

      The hiring authority at Meredith is looking to see if you can readily identify what separates a winning ad campaign from a flop. When answering this question, try to take a more technical approach, discussing the tools you use to mine and analyze data, for instance. The interviewer will want to see your ability to think critically and pivot when needed.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "To prevent total advertisement flops altogether, I lean on A/B testing. I believe many answers can come to the surface when you take the time to test a few ideas and then measure the performance of each ad against each other. I rely heavily on data, but also make sure to compare the results of different channels, as one campaign may work very well on social where another will not."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "In my current role, I have pre-determined benchmarks for KPIs such as click-through rates and quality of acquired leads. Looking at the data surrounding these targets will help me to understand better if an advertisement is a win or a loss. When an ad appears to be a flop, our team will pull it right away and give a further push to the one that is performing up to expectations."

  12. 12.

    If you could pitch me one idea for an article for any of our print of digital publications, what would it be?

      The hiring authority wants to get to know you. One great way to do this is to ask about your interests. Generally speaking, you would want to pitch something you are knowledgeable in and passionate about. There is no right or wrong answer to a question like this; however, the interviewer will want to see that you are insightful and have enthusiasm for an exciting topic. Choose an item that is related to your favorite Meredith publication.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I read a lot of history books and find so much of it fascinating. In particular, ancestry and genealogy. If I could pitch you one idea for an article, it would be a how-to for people who were starting on discovering their family lineage. This article could be an interesting topic for Time Magazine readers."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "As a new graduate, I have a keen interest in productivity hacks for new university students. In my first year, I struggled with organization and time-management. By the end of my second year, I had mastered the art of juggling many priorities. This topic is in high demand, and I would pitch it as a series of articles for Money magazine."

  13. 13.

    Have you ever managed or helped with a content budget? If so, what type of budgets are you accustomed to working with?

      Before your interview, take some time to gather data related to the budgets you have worked with, and the times when you have come in under budget. This way, you will be prepared with specifics when asked about your budgetary experience.

      The interviewer wants to see that you have great insight when it comes to being budget conscious. Appropriate planning is one of the keys to a successful project, so be sure to discuss the steps that you take to plan a project's dollar spend carefully.

      Every dollar counts, even if you are working for a massive company like Meredith! If you do not have experience in budget management, refer to the fact that you are responsible and resourceful.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Most of the budgets that I have worked within spread amongst a variety of digital production and creative costs. I have worked on budgets as small as $5,000 and as large as $15M. No matter the size of the budget, it's incredibly important that I treat every dollar as though it's my own; being wisely allocated and accounted for."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "Although my experience does not yet include budget management, I have made recommendations on cost savings when it comes to content writing, video production, and talent acquisition. I feel that with the right training, and some more work experience, I will be ready to assist with content budgeting in no time."

  14. 14.

    Which Meredith magazines will you find on stands, today?

      The interviewers at Meredith want assurance that you have done some research on their brand before your interview. Depending on your location, your answer may differ. In the US and Canada, the most common Meredith publications include:

      - Martha Stewart Living
      - Time Magazine
      - People
      - Better Homes & Gardens
      - Shape
      - Sports Illustrated
      - Parents
      - In Style
      - Health
      - Martha Stewart Weddings
      - Real Simple
      - Allrecipes

      Show the interviewer what you know by discussing with which publications you are familiar.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I grew up reading magazines like Time and People, and I love to see that these Meredith publications are still so popular today. In addition to these, readers in our region would most commonly see Martha Stewart Living, In Style, Shape, and Better Homes & Gardens."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I am familiar with and subscribe to many Meredith magazines! My favorites are Martha Stewart Living, Allrecipes, and Real Simple because I love to DIY and try new recipes. Other common publications from Meredith Corporation include Sports Illustrated, Magnolia Journal, Health, and Eating Well."

  15. 15.

    What has been the best short-form content project you have worked on this year?

      The interviewer would like to have more information on the project in which you are most proud. If you have a digital portfolio with you, this is a great tool to use when describing the best short-form content project you have worked on this year.

      Rachelle's Answer

      "I genuinely enjoy working on both long and short-form content projects; however, I do find short-form digital content to be especially thrilling to create. A favorite short-form project that I worked on this year was a series of educational shorts for a children's channel with which I collaborated. It was important to me that the messaging be clear while also being fun and educational. Mission accomplished, as the series received more shares, comments, and downloads than any other we have released in the past five years."

      Rachelle's Answer

      "This year, I was part of a team that created a series of interactive landing pages for an upcoming film we were marketing. To include interactive elements such as reveal marketing, contests, and gamification, we grew engagement exponentially. I would love to show you more from my portfolio, which I prepared for you."

  16. 16.

    With which advertising vehicles are you most familiar: billboards, print, digital, broadcast, or other?

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  17. 17.

    Walk me through your editing experience. How would you rate your editing skills from 1-10?

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  18. 18.

    Walk me through your experience working alongside other network departments, including Marketing, Ad Sales, Press, Research, Digital, and Social.

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  19. 19.

    Have you ever had to pitch an idea? If so, how was your presentation received?

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  20. 20.

    What expertise do you bring in digital KPIs and analytics?

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  21. 21.

    New media runs 24/7. How do you feel about an overnight shift, working on weekends, and holidays?

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  22. 22.

    Meredith strives to be first in all we do. How do you stay ahead in the latest television trends?

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  23. 23.

    How do you stay up-to-date on current events, celebrity news, and general lifestyle topics?

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  24. 24.

    How do you transition between the creative and analytical sides of publishing?

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  25. 25.

    How is social media changing the way people consume news, today? What can Meredith do to remain relevant?

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  26. 26.

    Describe to me the types of digital media you are most experienced with.

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  27. 27.

    How would you solicit new advertising business for our radio stations?

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  28. 28.

    In your opinion, what is the difference between marketing and advertising?

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  29. 29.

    Do you have a well-established network of contacts in the media industry? If so, how did you go about building this network?

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  30. 30.

    Walk me through your experience in media and advertising.

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