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After more than 10 years as MDM’s Associate Publisher, and more than 30 years of a sales, marketing and publishing career in wholesale distribution, Craig Riley is retiring. Craig has been a crucial contributor to the growth of MDM’s digital platforms.
Prior to joining MDM, Craig worked for Industrial Distribution magazine for more than 20 years, including six as publisher during its heyday in the late 1990s and early 2000s, when it reached the highest revenue levels in its more than 100-year history. Craig also was the publisher of tED magazine, the publication for the National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED), for three and a half years.
Craig started his sales career selling industrial valves, which provided a foundation for his later career in publications covering wholesale distribution. He carried a case and knew the industry and its challenges firsthand, which always served him well in building strong relationships with clients throughout his career. We connected about a dozen years ago, just as I was just beginning to build out MDM’s website and email platforms.
Craig recognized the power of digital well ahead of many in the publishing world, so when the opportunity emerged to partner with him for the benefit of MDM, I jumped at the chance to bring onboard someone with a strong knowledge of the industry, powerful relationships built over decades, and an understanding of the power of digital in the rapidly changing world of publishing and online marketing.
More importantly, Craig has been one of the most professional sales people I have worked with in my more than 30 years in distribution. He has always focused on value for the customer and on working hard to create long-term, win-win relationships. This has been a key to MDM’s growth, as Craig would often advise our sponsorship and advertising partners on how to best create messaging and campaigns to fully leverage the capabilities that digital platforms offer and the changing ways our audience seeks out and consumes information. Craig would tell you that it was only to make sure that they got the best results possible from their marketing investment. But that’s exactly the point – Craig was focused first on what served the customer best based on his unique combination of industry experience and knowledge of the emerging technological landscape, even when it cost a short-term sale to avoid what he knew would be a poor result and damage to MDM’s reputation.
He’s also been a great supporter of the MDM brand and team as we have grown. At some point early in our working together, he became a trusted advisor and an incredibly good friend. I miss him already, and he will be sorely missed by our team, but can be proud of the value he has brought to many of MDM’s marketing partners. Most importantly, his grandkids are very lucky to now have his full attention. Congratulations, Craig! You have much to be proud of in your passion for the industry and the many people you have helped to grow their business.
As always, I welcome your comments. If you’d like to wish Craig well, please use the comment form below or contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.