MILESTONES – Biz X Celebrates Big Anniversary As Area’s Only International Border City Publication

Biz X magazine 25 th Anniversary
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MILESTONES – Biz X Celebrates Big Anniversary As Area’s Only International Border City Publication

In early 1998, Biz X magazine set out to provide accurate information about the businesses and people that shape the border cities.

Despite the Magazine Publisher statistic that 90% of new magazine ventures fail, in 2022, Biz X celebrates 25 years serving the region with its annual awards program in the November/December edition and will publish its 250th issue in January 2023.

According to Publisher Deborah Jones, fresh ideas and a passion for supporting small business are the biggest factors to their longevity.

“Doing things differently, caring about the companies and people who advertise with us, and our emphasis on local editorial content are our keys to success,” believes Jones.

After earning an Honours degree in Communication Studies from the University of Windsor, Jones was hired by a local business magazine as a freelance writer and was quickly promoted to Assistant Editor. She moved on from that position to help launch a new business magazine called The Business Exchange (TBE).

After five years, the opportunity to start her own publication became an option and she purchased some of the fixed assets of TBE — and Biz X magazine was born!

Launching a magazine is just the first step. Staying in business is where the hard work comes in. Issues like the terrorist attacks of 9-11, border closures, the COVID-19 pandemic, an increase in social media outlets/news websites, high gas prices, and recessions have affected the magazine’s ad revenues over the years.

“Every day something unexpected happens, but we press on,” comments Jones. “Since we are in the advertising industry, when the economy turns sour, business professionals tend to slash their ad budgets. We have survived this by profiling businesses/organizations who then share our magazine online, which gets us more exposure, sponsoring events, and focusing on increasing the value our clients receive when they do buy ad space in the print issue.”

Though the magazine is owned by Jones she runs the business with major assistance from her parents Colin and Kathy Jones, sister Della and Deborah’s partner Jack Rosenberg. (Please refer to Deborah’s column on page 5 of this issue for a list of all Biz X team members).

The magazine balances business news, lifestyle matters, parenting tips, entertainment, and more, to target business owners, their employees and those working for non-profit organizations. It is delivered 10 times a year to all businesses/organizations registered with Canada Post in Windsor, Essex County and Pelee Island and can be found in display racks across Ontario.

Since 2006, certain issues are also distributed in metro Detroit tourist attractions, airports, train stations and hotels.

In addition, there is a digital edition on their website (and an elaborate Back Issues section) which is complemented by daily news stories, event photos, things to do and blogs.

As well, there is also a sister online magazine run by Rosenberg — InPlayMagazine.com — Metro Detroit’s and Windsor’s only sports and leisure magazine.

But that’s not all!

Part of their commitment to help local businesses grow comes in the form of the popular Biz X Awards, an annual celebration to honour businesses, organizations, and events. Since inception, more than 775 awards have been given out to highlight the hard work, dedication, and talent found locally.

Biz X is also a strong community supporter, sponsoring many worthy causes in the area, including the Windsor Classic Chorale, 100 Women Who Care Windsor-Essex, and the Woofa~Roo Pet Festival.

With 30 years of experience in the publishing industry and through her commitment to the success of others, Jones has received a lengthy list of awards, including the 2007 Entrepreneur of the Year Award from the Windsor & District Regional Chamber of Commerce.

“I am very proud of this, not only for myself, my family and for our freelance team, but also for all female entrepreneurs, because I am the first and only woman, locally, to receive this honour, to date,” Jones expresses.

What’s next?

Jones and her team are focused on growing advertising revenues back to pre-pandemic levels in order to produce more pages per issue and therefore highlight even more businesses and organizations.

“I want everyone to know about all the great things we have in this region — the magazine helps me do that and it also attracts new tourists to our area, which means more people visiting and spending their dollars at local businesses,” states Jones.

You can check out the latest issue and find out about advertising opportunities on: BizXMagazine.com.

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Victoria is a Project Manager and Marketing professional who has worked in tech, advertising, advanced manufacturing, and not-for-profit organizations. A community champion and active volunteer, she regularly contributes to Biz X magazine to help spotlight the many great events, initiatives, businesses and charities found in the Windsor Essex region. Victoria lives in Riverside with her family and enjoys camping, traveling, and meeting new dogs.