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Media Intelligence : MT Resource 2010
consumer publishing have been concentrating on providing improved ROI in response to an increasing demand from advertisers and media buyers. Although the importance of investing in research has always been recognised, its emphasis is being fuelled by the increasing popularity of online measurement. Haymarket Media MD Jeremy Vaughan, one of the newly- appointed directors to the board of Publishers Australia advises: “Print publishers need to invest further into research to provide agencies and clients with the confidence that print is at the forefront of accountability, integrity and transparency. This is more evident in light of the full transparency of the online product.” Next Media’s Gardiner observes that although Morgan’s research is fine for their mainstream titles, “we’ve found it a little difficult for the more niche titles to get relevant data”. Appropriately, niche titles is the first sector in which Publishers Australia aims to develop research. Vaughan elaborates: “ The first initiative is the power of specialist/niche media both in online and print. This will focus on the strength and effectiveness of targeting specific segments with accuracy.” News Limited recently conducted a large food study across its newspapers, magazines and websites: the Food DNA study delivered insights into food trends, consumers and media brands to assist food advertisers in making stronger connections with consumers. News Magazines’ Hook explains that the company is looking at specific categories – eg food, prestige, value. “Because we have magazines that are aligned in interest areas, it is of more value to obtain a broad overview of what’s happening in the marketplace rather than drilling down magazine by magazine.” Many companies conduct their own readership surveys, more often online, such as Next Media’s G Magazine and Yen. “We’re increasingly relying on consumer feedback because they are very targeted audiences,” observes Gardiner. “ The range of online communication options give you an ability to grab that.” News Magazines has just launched an online community space called ThinkSpot. Here readers contribute ideas and information as well as thoughts on recent trends. “ We’re using that in the on- going development of our titles but also for advertisers who want to test concepts, relationships and ideas,” says Hook. Another recent initiative is Pacific Magazines’ buyer action measure (BAM). BAM surveys are conducted online and cover about 150 people who have bought a particular magazine, identifying the proportion of people who read the ad then acted on it. Conducted by McNair Ingenuity and claimed to be a world first, New Idea and Better Homes & Gardens were the first two magazines involved in the measure that began in October ’09. “ We know magazine ads generate sales but we had to create a measurement tool that would prove that to advertisers,” says Pacific Magazines’ Zavecz. “By the end of the year we’ll have around 500 different ads measured across our different magazines; by the end of next year we’ll have over 3000 different ways to categorise the response of ads.” To further educate advertisers in the selling proposition, Gardiner clarifies: “The reality is most mediums don’t hold attention for particularly long periods of time – whether it’s TV, skimming through a newspaper (and) online is an extremely quick message. There aren’t many mediums where people consume one, two or three hours of reading, revisit things two or three times and actually acquire it to read specifically on that topic ... it will become the reason you’ve got a lot of drop-down from mainstream magazines to more targeted magazines. You need to know who you’re getting to – not just 1.5 million watching TV because you know that three-quarters of them aren’t relevant to your product and you’re paying a premium for doing that.” As 2009 draws to a close, most have noticed an increase in ad interest. Universal’s Williams confirms: “It is great to see smart newcomers seize territory in some of the markets in which we operate. If the economy continues to improve, these brave plays will pay, and we haven’t lost the old stalwarts – so the result will be not only an adjustment of market share but a bigger market.” Gardiner agrees: “The market is still relatively short and still quite rate sensitive but there’s lots more green shoots – probably in more than half the sectors, it’s more positive. There’s quite a few clients talking as though in 2010 they will start to commit to a bit more scheduled sort of activity.” This optimistic outlook accompanied by the advances in research, technology and use of more touch points augurs well for the closing stages of the GFC. As Hook observes: “The sort of small luxury that a magazine is, has weathered it fairly well. The role of interpretation, editing, forecasting and delivering that inspiration and aspiration is done particularly well by magazines – there is something about the expert creation of content that people will always want.” “Twitter and Facebook are good as communication vehicles more than an engagement for content or an ad model at this stage.” – David Gardiner CEO, Next Media MediaTitles 24 p20-21,23 consumer.indd 23 8/12/09 2:20:17 PM
2009 - 2010
MT Resource Guide 2011