When Alternative becomes Natural…

January 29, 2008

That is of course Alternative Medicine magazine changing its name to Natural Solutions and its tag line from The Art & Science of Healthy Living to Vibrant Health Balanced Living. Why the change? Well the editor-in-chief goes into great length trying to assure readers that nothing have changed except for the name and design. Linda Sparrowe writes in the first issue of Natural Solutions,”…you’ll be happy to discover most everything about the magazine is still here. It looks different, but all the departments you trust remain intact and all the topics continue to have that “AltMed” spin.” In the January issue (with the old name) Ms. Saprrowe writes about the change, “We’ve talked about this (the name change) for quite a while, and now it’s official. For our New Year’s resolution — one we know we can keep — we vow not to change the content you have come to trust month after month, year upon year.” If that is the case, why then bother and change the name of the magazine after 14 years of publishing it under the name Alternative Medicine. The newsstands are already crowded and some magazines will kill to have a 14-year brand to depend on and continue to promote. Change is the only constant in our business; that is a given. But to change for the sake of change is the worst thing than can happen in our business. Many have tried it before and many have failed. I just hope that the folks at Alternative Medicine, sorry Natural Solutions are not destroying a 14-year branded history in one swift change that they go to length to say it is not a change!


  1. For what it’s worth. Neither works for me. With the old logo the only real word to be seen from the newsstand is Alternative. Alternative what? Politics? Building techniques? Life style? OH, if you look real close in script it says medicine. Now we have Natural Solutions. OK, I’m not in that niche and perhaps it’s a code that only those in the “group” understand, but at least you can clearly see the full title name.

    But I am sure that this is all about advertising and not naming conventions. There is no reason to change a 14 year old title without a strong and compelling business reason. This would be beyond either Samir’s or my capacity to comment upon because we are not inside the gates of newly named Natural Solutions.

  2. They changed the name because in it’s earlier years the magazine actually specifically focused on alternative medicine, while since it has grown to cover a lot more ground such as beauty and green living. They no longer felt the title accurately described what the magazine was about. There were many considerations (yes, including the word “medicine’s” ability to off-put advertisers), but this was definitely the primary one.

  3. the term “alternative” has a way of limiting its reach also
    There may be a lot of wisdom in using word “natural” in a day and age where organic, green and “natural” sells a product

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