Useful, accessible information on circulation and audience development for magazine publishing professionals.

March 29th 2017

is the 88th day of the year and there are 277 days remaining until the end of the year.

 

TODAY'S NEWS HEADLINES:
After nine months of preparation, the United Kingdom's Prime Minister has triggered Article 50 after her letter to European Council President Donald Tusk was delivered by Ambassador Sir Tim Barrow in Brussels.

The White House has denied it tried to stop potentially damaging evidence about links between the President's team and Russia from being made public.

A bomb blast hit a passenger bus in the government-held city of Homs at noon on Wednesday, killing five people and wounding six, the Syrian state news agency SANA reported.

Singer-songwriter Bob Dylan will receive his Nobel Literature Prize diploma and medal in the next few days in Stockholm.

European regulators have formally blocked the £25bn merger between the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and Deutsche Boerse.

Davie Bowie, Barbra Streisand, Judy Garland, The Eagles, Richard Pryor, Talking Heads and N.W.A. are just a few of the artists whose work has now been marked for preservation by the Library of Congress.

More than 108,000 people have signed a petition urging First Lady Melania Trump to move to the White House or pay for security costs at Trump Tower herself.

Malaysia briefly prevented a North Korean ship carrying coal from entering its port in Penang because of a suspected breach of United Nations sanctions.

Bill Cosby's lawyers don't want jurors at his suburban
Philadelphia sexual-assault trial to hear he gave women quaaludes, money or educational funds. The defense says in court papers filed Tuesday that Cosby's deposition testimony about those topics would prejudice the jury.

An outbreak of meningitis in Nigeria has killed 269 people
in recent weeks.

France’s attempts to counter the radicalization of its young people are in turmoil, with a group home intended to turn them away from Islamic extremism empty, the head of a highly publicized nonprofit convicted of misuse of public funds, and plans to segregate prison inmates suspected of harboring jihadi ideas abandoned.

Three storm chasers were killed on Tuesday in a car wreck in northwest Texas as an intense tornado-packed storm front rolled through the state.

White House staff said Tuesday that they won’t be attending this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner out of “solidarity” with President Trump, who announced last month that he would not be attending the annual event.

Donald Trump has rolled back Barack Obama's record on climate change with a series of orders undermining America's commitment to tackle global warming.


BORN TODAY:
1187 – Arthur I, Duke of Brittany (d. 1203)
1713 – John Ponsonby, Irish politician (d. 1789)
1816 – 10th Dalai Lama (d. 1837)
1870 – Pavlos Melas, French-Greek captain (d. 1904)
1871 – Tom Hayward, English cricketer (d. 1939)
1902 – William Walton, English composer (d. 1983)
1914 – Phil Foster, American actor (d. 1985)
1914 – Chapman Pincher, Indian-English historian,
journalist, and author (d. 2014)
1918 – Pearl Bailey, American actress and singer (d. 1990)

1936 – Mogens Camre, Danish politician
1937 – Gordon Milne, English footballer
1938 – Bert de Vries, Dutch politician
1943 – Vangelis, Greek keyboard player and songwriter

1947 – Bobby Kimball, American singer-songwriter
1957 – Elizabeth Hand, American author

1964 – Ming Tsai, American chef and television host
1968 – Lucy Lawless, New Zealand actress

1971 – Lara Logan, South African television and radio
journalist and war correspondent
1986 – Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, English footballer
1988 – Jürgen Zopp, Estonian tennis player

DIED TODAY:
2016 – Patty Duke, American actress (b. 1946)

1994 – Bill Travers, English actor, director, and screenwriter (b. 1922)
1992 – Paul Henreid, American actor (b. 1908)
1980 – Mantovani, Italian-English conductor and composer (b. 1905)
1957 – Joyce Cary, Anglo-Irish novelist (b. 1888)
1578 – Louis I, Cardinal of Guise (b. 1527)
AD 57 – Emperor Guangwu of Han (b. 5 BC)
87 BC – Emperor Wu of Han of China (b. 156 BC)
TODAY IN HISTORY:
845 – Paris is sacked by Viking raiders, probably under Ragnar Lodbrok, who collects a huge ransom in exchange for leaving.

1549 – The city of Salvador da Bahia, the first capital of Brazil, is founded.

1792 – King Gustav III of Sweden dies after being shot in the back at a midnight masquerade ball at Stockholm's Royal Opera 13 days earlier. He is succeeded by Gustav IV Adolf.

1809 – King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden abdicates after a coup d'état. At the Diet of Porvoo, Finland's four Estates pledge allegiance to Alexander I of Russia, commencing the secession of the Grand Duchy of Finland from Sweden.

1867 – Queen Victoria gives Royal Assent to the British North America Act which establishes the Dominion of Canada on July 1.

1871 – Royal Albert Hall is opened by Queen Victoria.

1879 – Anglo-Zulu War: Battle of Kambula: British forces defeat 20,000 Zulus.

1882 – The Knights of Columbus are established.

1951 – Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage.

1957 – The New York, Ontario and Western Railway makes its final run, the first major U.S. railroad to be abandoned in its entirety.

1982 – The Canada Act 1982 receives the Royal Assent from Queen Elizabeth II, setting the stage for the Queen of Canada to proclaim the Constitution Act, 1982.

1999 – The Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above the 10,000 mark (10,006.78) for the first time, during the height of the dot-com bubble.

2010 – Two suicide bombers hit the Moscow Metro system at the peak of the morning rush hour, killing 40.
AND ANOTHER THING!
I finally subscribed to a digital magazine.
Click here to read.

For previous 'And Another Thing' articles, click here.

LATEST STRAIGHT TALK
The Good Old Days - Part II.
Click here to read.

For previous 'Straight Talk' articles, click here.
CircSpot.com publishes cartoons from time to time; to check out some of the best, click here.

Day 88 of 365: Boganda Day (Central African Republic).
PROCIRC SOLD.
'Hearst and Condé Nast are the proud new owners of ProCirc via their joint venture PubWorx' says mediawiredaily.com. 'Condé and Hearst joined forces to form PubWorx' just over a year ago says wwd.com although this is not the first company the two publishers own.

Condé and Hearst created Comag in the United Kingdom based in West Drayton over 40 years ago to handle newsstand for their magazines as well as the magazines of other publishers. 'The U.S. branch of Comag was sold in 2012, but Hearst and Condé Nast still own and operate the U.K. division together' says Alexandra Steigrad at WWD.

It is understood that ProCirc will continue business as usual out of their offices, but governed by PubWorx
.
ARE SPIRITS AT FAIRFAX MEDIA AS HIGH AS THEIR SHARE PRICE?
'Shares in Fairfax Media have today hit their highest point in more than five years' says Tim Burrowes at mumbrella.com.au and it is all due to the speculation that 'private equity company TPG Capital is poised to launch a takeover bid.'

On the face of it, the company should be well worth purchasing as 'Fairfax Media publishes metropolitan, agricultural, regional and community newspapers, financial and consumer magazines' says its own web site. 'In Australia, mastheads include The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Australian Financial Review, The Canberra Times, The Sun-Herald, and The Land. In New Zealand mastheads include The Dominion Post, The Press, The Sunday Star-Times, TV Guide, NZ House and Garden, New Zealand Fishing News and Cuisine, as well as agricultural publications. Fairfax has a 54.5% interest in Macquarie Radio Network.'
ARE SPIRITS AT JOHNSTON PRESS HIGH?
Probably not as high as Fairfax Media as 'the publisher of titles including the Scotsman, Yorkshire Post and the national i has reported a £300m pre-tax loss' says the U.K.'s Guardian. A tough advertising market is to blame (isn't it always?) as well as 'writing down the value of its 200-plus local newspapers.'

Mind you, it it not all doom and gloom as 'the i, which the publisher acquired from Evgeny Lebedev for £24m last April, has proved to be a star performer, making £3.3m in profits in the eight months to the end of last year.' For more of the report by Mark Sweney, click here.

FORBES AND CHINA AND FOOLISH LUNCHES.
Forbes Media 'is now said to be on the brink of selling a majority stake to another Chinese company' scribes Keith K. Kelly at the New York Post. Forbes sold itself to another company based in Asia back in September 2014 and there followed many 'legal differences between the Forbes family and its new Asian owners' says Mr. Kelly although they have now been rectified. For more on the possible sale of the rest of the company, click here.

Meanwhile staff at Us Weekly are not having a great time. 'Last week, 38 editorial staffers of the celebrity weekly, including Editor-in-Chief Michael Steele, were told they would not be retained' says Mr. Kelly but worse still 'about 80 staffers that were offered jobs were invited by Pecker to lunch at Le Bernardin at 12:45 p.m. on Friday.' Pecker referring to David Pecker the head honcho at American Media Inc. However the lunch seemed to be devoid of one, or possibly two essential items - food - and booze! For more of this from Keith J. Kelly, click here.

IT USED TO BE WE TRUSTED THE NEWS BUT NOT THE ADS - BUT NOW...
'a new survey has revealed one surprising source that Americans trust in increasing numbers: advertising' says Patrick Kulp at mashable.com. The report was released at the beginning of this week and notes Mr. Kulp 'nearly three quarters of people surveyed now say they think advertising is generally "honest".'

When it comes to the news, we presume the news is real, but in this day and age - who knows - 'only three in 10 people had "a great deal" or "a fair amount" of trust in mainstream media.' For more figures and facts, click here.





GOOD JOURNALISM IS NOT ENOUGH (IT NEVER WAS) BUT NOW WE NEED TRICKS AND GOODIES?
“Magazines don’t make sufficient money just by producing a magazine. You have to do all kinds of tricks and goodies to make it break even.” That is what David Rose, publisher of the history-focused literary magazine Lapham’s Quarterly said at a panel at Columbia Journalism School on Monday scribes Carlett Spike at cjr.com.

Ms. Spike says in her article 'Rose joined Hillary Frey, a consultant for the Huffington Post with priors including NBC News, The Nation, and Salon, for a cozy conversation about the magazine industry’s evolving business models. Rose and Frey said many publications are facing dismal prospects, and neither sounded anything resembling an upbeat tone about the future. “Our massive mistake when the Internet started with journalism—why it was given away for free,” says Frey. “It’s not a public resource. It costs a lot of money to do good journalism.”

OK... here's the thing... certainly giving away content for free was a mistake, but it is also a mistake to think tricks and goodies have not been apart of "good journalism" for many years. The fact is good journalism has been supported in the past by ruler/clock calculators (Time), coffee made with cat poop (The Economist), pens (The Week), wine (The Spectator) - we could go on. No magazine has a 100% renewal rate or requalification rate and as good as "good journalism" is, it has never been, nor ever will be enough. For more, click here.


Day 87 of 365: Serfs Emancipation Day (Tibet).

Mediacorp to shutter the print editions of ‘Style’ and ‘Style: Me’ magazines in digital move.

THE TRUTH ABOUT TELEMARKETING:
TEN KEY FACTS THAT MAY CHANGE YOUR PERCEPTIONS BY RONEN BEN-DROR.

All the buzz in the marketing world is about digital channels. From Facebook to Instagram and email newsletters, marketers are focusing much of their attention and resources on digital methods of reaching their target audiences. In the race to win the digital audience, though, many marketers are overlooking one simple yet crucial part of human nature, our need to connect with another person.  Marketers focusing only on digital channels are failing to demonstrate to their clients how much they care about them by not providing the human touch. 

Why have large technology corporations, credit card companies and banks decided to reduce, and some completely eliminate, using IVR and instead enhance your experience by connecting you with a human being instantly?  Why are so many US based manufacturing companies bringing back their call centers to the US (shared culture)? 

They are making these changes because they realize that their clients are vying to feel important.  Consumers want to know that you care about solving their challenges and helping grow their business, and/or improve their lives.

Traditional marketing communications have been building relationships for decades which has led to sales growth for companies across industries. Telemarketing is one of those methods.  

Telemarketing is effective because it is two people engaging in conversation to accomplish one or more of the following:

  • Build relationships
  • Improve customer service
  • Establish a client persona definition
  • Identify opportunities
  • Provide actionable lead generation/qualification
  • Survey completion ...  just to name a few

It has been over twelve years since the FTC enacted (and started to enforce) the DNC law.  Since then, the number of calls during dinner are almost non-existent and people no longer cringe at the thought of receiving a call.  In fact, when it comes to B2B sales, telemarketers may be a welcome distraction from the daily grind.

This is just one example of the many mis-perceptions about telemarketing, and this article will further discuss all the facts about this traditional tool that is still a reliable and affordable way to build your business and reach your goals.

In this article, we’ll explore why telemarketing should be one of your marketing preferences.   We’ll demonstrate how to improve your preparation for a telemarketing campaign and the positive results you can expect from your campaigns.



 

Here are the ten key facts that may change your perceptions about telemarketing:

  • Your B2B telemarketing calls aren’t irritating. As mentioned above, while calls at home were considered the most annoying form of advertising by 35 percent of 200 managers, only four percent said that they were annoying at work. Managers expect to receive sales calls at work, and consider it to be part of their responsibilities.

  • Telemarketing works to increase sales. When marketing managers were asked to rate the effectiveness of various methods for lead nurturing, 60 percent said telemarketing was “very effective.” When you add in the additional managers that said that it was “effective,” the total reaches 90 percent of marketing managers.

  • There’s a is-connect between the effectiveness of telemarketing and its popularity levels. Conversely, some digital marketing methods, like social media, have the reverse relationship, with a high popularity level combined with a low effectiveness when it comes to generating leads.

  • Garbage in, garbage out, applies to telemarketing. A good telemarketing campaign relies on a good data set. You can negatively impact your results by up to 50 percent if 30-40 percent of your data is bad.

  • Settle in for an effective telemarketing campaign. If you are involved in a B2B long sales cycle, don’t expect your telemarketing campaign to deliver results in a short time. It takes time for callbacks, redirections and other interruptions to sort out. The average B2B telemarketing campaign reaches optimum “opportunities per day” at around 14 weeks.

  • Telemarketing requires perseverance. Companies
    involved in selling high ticket items and/or searching for clients with large life-time dollar value should expect the average telemarketing campaign will require 80 calls for every opportunity. You should also remember that if you operate in a highly competitive environment a “no” isn't always a final answer, so don’t get discouraged. Ask a few questions to determine if the “no” might really be a “not at this time.”

  • Relevance is critical to telemarketing success. When you’re having a highly-relevant conversation, and your contact fully meets your criteria for your buyer persona, you’ll see improved results. Your response could increase by as much as 800 percent.

  • People crave the human interaction that telemarketing delivers. Social media may be popular, but it doesn't make your clients or your potential clients feel valued. Consider a birthday wish. Would you rather hear from hundreds of friends on Facebook, sending a generic “happy birthday,” or receive a phone call and have a personal conversation with a friend, in which they wish you a happy birthday? You can’t replace the personal relationship with a digital version.

  • Human interactions close the sale. You can’t underestimate the value of a personal connection. In nearly 70 percent of B2B sales, there was a human interaction that occurred, either in person or on the phone.

  • You may have a sales gap. Research by Sirius Decisions indicated that approximately 80 percent of sales leads are never followed up by a field sales representative. A telemarketing team will fill that gap.

Here are the three main takeaways from these facts:

  • Telemarketing should be one of your preferred marketing channels.  Professionally designed and executed sales calls at work are not considered annoying, on the contrary, they are welcomed by many, and are considered as a good source for information and relationship development.  There is currently a bias in favor of social media, but that doesn't mean that it’s what your potential buyers actually prefer.

  • Bad or incomplete data will negatively impact your campaign. Make sure that you are creating a data set that is relevant and accurate to improve the success of your efforts, and to improve your return on investment. You should also be prepared for a long campaign, expecting to reach your optimum stride at around 14 weeks.

  • Telemarketing delivers a human-to-human experience unparalleled in the world of digital marketing. Approximately 70 percent of all purchases occurred with an element of human interaction.

When you include telemarketing as an integral part of your marketing strategy, you gain benefits that cannot be matched by digital methods. While digital methods like blog postings, social media updates and email newsletters are passive, telemarketing provides you with a proactive way to reach out to potential buyers and connect with them. In that conversation, you gain critical information about the challenges and opportunities they are facing in their daily jobs, where they are in the buying decision and whether they have any interest in your company.

There are other benefits, too. Lead generation is of a much higher quality when obtained with telemarketing. In a short conversation, you gain important details about whether you have a clear picture of the decision-making process for that company, as well as where they are in their process. You can answer questions and discuss reservations, opening the way for the company to do business with you.

At Blue Valley Telemarketing, we have experience working with companies like yours that want to grow their sales opportunities through the most effective marketing channels. We’d love to hear your story and about the opportunities your company has for growth.

 


IF YOU LOVE YOUR METRICS, YOU ARE DOOMED.
The Spectator, the world's oldest continuously published magazine 'is adding 400 new paying subscribers a week' says Jessica Davies at digiday.com which is twice as many as the same time last year.

We have always said here at CircSpot.com that it is quality not quantity that matters and The Spectator's editor Fraser Nelson agrees with us. Mind you, it is not just The Spectator that has seen a spike says Mr. Nelson : "The whole industry is seeing a spike in subscriptions. At first, I thought it was a Brexit bump, then a Trump bump, but then in January, we were still doing way better than before.”

So what is The Spectator's subscription strategy? ‘If you fall in love with your metrics, you’re doomed’ seems to be the answer. For more, click here.

SO... THE TRENDS FOR 2017.
Three months have just about gone of 2017 and says at themediabriefing.com 'much of the Guardian's Changing Media Summit was focused on restoring trust; from fake news to viewability and ad fraud' which is really interesting considering it is 2017!

She writes that 'Tom Goodwin, the executive vice president of innovation, Zenith USA talked about the ten themes that will move us forward in 2017, if only we are brave enough to approach them with boldness and creativity.' To see if you are brave, click here.

NEWS IS COMING AT US FROM ALL DIRECTIONS - WILL IT END, AND CAN WE TRUST IT.
In the beginning there was ink.
Once upon a time a newspaper was literally that, a sheet of paper with news on it. Over the years, pages got added, followed by pictures and newspapers became for many their only source of news.  Despite the invention of what would become known as radio and later a radio with pictures, newspapers had quite a good life for many years employing the talented writers people came to trust and publishing the facts of the news rather than the newspapers “take” on the news.

Are facts facts?
Then newspapers started to add in their thoughts and that is fine but then they started to report the news based on their interpretation, which lead to newspapers supporting one political party over another, republican, democrat, labour or conservative. A political leader could stand up and say “From this day on, all plumbers will be given free meals” and one paper would report this with a headline of “Plumbers get free meals” while another would report this as “Plumbers treated as third-class citizens.” Same story, same quote, same leader – same everything, just a different point of view, points of view that are now explored nightly on talk shows on news channels around the world, but more of that later.

The “digital” explosion commences.
Through all of this, the main source of news was newspapers, many printed in the morning, but some also in the evening. Some got their news from the evening news with the likes of Walter Cronkite and Alistair Burnett informing viewers of the day’s events, that many would then read about the following morning. Then at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on June 1, 1980 the biggest change for decades occurred, the start of 24-hour news. CNN heralded Headline News, B.B.C.24, America’s Talking, M.S.N.B.C., Sky News as well as news from China, the Middle and the Far East. Stations were free (with the exception of the B.B.C.) to interpret the news as they saw it, and even though the B.B.C. were not supposed to present a bias, some people swear they did. Then of course came the internet and the creation of all we have today and so much power does this source have, you could debate whether it actually managed to elect a president – a president who firmly believes in what he terms “fake news.”

What is “fake news?”
It is an oxymoron that’s what, if news is fake, it cannot be news; it is fiction… gossip… flim-flam. If you have any doubt there is a weekly newspaper, several of them actually, that are happy to present news as fact, even though we know (or do we?) they are fake news. Fake news is a term invented by President Donald John Trump and is defined as news he does not agree with regardless of accuracy. The trouble is when C.N.N. invented itself back in 1980 it did not envisage more and more outlets presenting news that did not increase with the same veracity as the stations themselves – in other words stations had to fill airtime and just like newspapers before them started to take political sides. So little news is available these stations fill airtime discussing news among themselves and sometime even start reporting what they have discussed as news, which then gets discussed by a new group of people and thus is the circle simultaneously completed and started again. Now not only do we have newspapers, magazines, radio and television all doing some sort of news, we now have web sites as well. Politico.com, Breitbart.com and Slate.com are a few that come to mind and they all report news according to their beliefs – and why shouldn't they? They are their web sites and they have the right to report what they believe, or want people to believe and freedom of speech is paramount if a free (or relatively free) society is to survive. However, it is also the responsibility of “society” to make sure people are properly educated to be able to form their own opinion, and not just take onboard the opinion they understand the most.

Is it all breaking up?
The fact of the matter is there is too much being offered to so many, by so few in so many ways that you have to wonder whether the availability of “content” as we know it may well implode. Audiences are fragmented like never before and the level of education is such that many youngsters of today are not aware of the “baddies” in World War 2; the hostilities of bodies like the I.R.A. or that Robert Mugabe is not a nice man, no matter what he says and how old he gets. Just like the television news networks mentioned earlier, there is still not enough news for all the outlets now available except now the word “news” is under fire. News is defined as “newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent or important events” not “newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent or important events we just made up” or ‘newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent or important events that annoy us because they don’t pertain to our way of thinking.” If it does all break up, who will survive? Hardly any of the news web sites because most of them are not making money at the moment. The B.B.C. may survive but only because the great British public that own a television are required to buy a license each year; the rest of the visual purveyor of what should actually be called “reality T.V.” will probably just fade away until our T.V. news landscape resembles June 1980.

Newspapers and many magazines have decimated their circulation to such a degree the costs of re-establishing a decent circulation are going to be very great indeed and who is there to do a decent editing job? When the likes of George Osborne, a man of no journalistic experience whatsoever, can be named editor of London’s Evening Standard you really have to wonder how the printed word will survive. Sub-editors have all but vanished and advertisers are not going to be enough to sustain the costs of a daily newspaper – no matter what the sales are. You might think Facebook would be the answer but you would be wrong. Facebook relies on publishers giving them stories, mostly for free, to keep people coming to their web site so they can view (or not) the wares being flogged by advertisers. If the whole thing implodes there will be nobody left to provide the likes of Facebook with stories – and they are not capable of constructing news themselves, so they will have been partly responsible, some would say “mostly responsible” for killing the so-called golden goose that will eventually see their own demise.

No news is not good news.
Currently the ability to get news is the best it has ever been, and it is difficult to think of ways it could be provided quicker without personal and possibly painful surgery. However, quicker is just what we don’t need, we need truth, accuracy; we need the facts so that we can make up our own minds, and not what others would have us think. If we don’t do this, we are doomed, the only news left will be anything related to the Kardashians and anything Donald John Trump wants to make up – a bit like the aforementioned Robert Mugabe. Okay, Robert Mugabe is a dictator and Donald John Trump isn't, but the thing is he could be. It is only an “honest and free press” to coin a phrase that is keeping the American president under control, and that is what Zimbabwe does not have – an “honest and fair press”.

Day 86 of 365: International Whisk(e)y Day.
A MOVING COVER CELEBRATES AN ICONIC ALBUM.
'Bauer Media’s MOJO Magazine has created an ‘animated‘ lenticular cover' reports the P.P.A. all to celebrate the '40 years of Pink Floyd’s Animals album'.

If you want one, be quick as there are a limited number of issues available and it is only available through the mojo4music web site.

Animals was the 10th Pink Floyd album to be recorded and was actually released in January, 40 years ago and got to number 2 in the U.K. album chart and number 3 on the Billboard chart.

For more, click here.
SHOP TIL YOU DROP NO MORE.
'Bauer Media will cease publishing its quarterly fashion title "Shop Til You Drop"' says Vivienne Kelly at mumbrella.com.au with 'the current autumn magazine to be its last issue.'

Whether this came as a big surprise to staff at the magazine is not knows as Ms. Kelly says there have been a 'spate of recent magazine closures and sell-offs for the publisher, with Rugby League Week axed earlier this month Dolly’s print edition wrapping up late last year and five adventure titles including Caravan World sold to a group of investors in October.'

For more, click here.
TIME'S DRAWING IN FOR TIME INC.
It seems as though the nominees to buy all, or part, of Time Inc. are lining up and the end as to who will bid what draws near. 'Time is still pushing the concept of selling to one buyer' says Keith J. Kelly at the New York Post which might account for the 'deadline for nominating members to the board of directors from March 23 to April 21.'

If you are a betting person, the scuttlebutt is that Meredith will be the purchaser, but tread carefully as there are other players still in the game. For more of Mr. Kelly's article and insight, click here.
US WEEKLY STAFF TO GO.
It will not be a surprise but after the sale of Us Weekly to American Media Inc. staff departures are already at hand. 'Mike Steele, editor-in-chief of the magazine, was among those let go' says Becky Peterson at minonline.com and 'editorial director Jaimee Zanzinger' is also leaving says Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke at WWD. In total 30% of the staff will get their marching orders including 'all of the Los Angeles editorial staff as well as creative director Victor Thompson, deputy editor April P. Bernard, photography director Jennifer Halper, entertainment director Ian Drew and online executive editor Justin Ravitz' says Corinne Grinapol at adweek.com.
THE ATLANTIC CROSSES THE ATLANTIC.
'The Atlantic today announced a major expansion across the Atlantic' reports theatlantic.com and the plans include '10 editorial and business employees to fill a new office in London.' James Fallows, a 43-year veteran of The Atlantic will head-up the office and 'will move to London this summer.'

"More than one-quarter of our digital audience lives outside the United States," says Atlantic President Bob Cohn but notes Jeffrey Goldberg, editor in chief of The Atlantic "our goal here is ambitious,” says Jeffrey Goldberg, editor in chief of The Atlantic. "We are hoping to bring Atlantic-quality journalism to a global audience in a very deliberate way."
How British Vogue
used Instagram
Stories to gain
a million
followers in
one year.
Publishers
are
wary
of
Medium’s
new
subscription
offering.

Cosmopolitan Celebrates Influential Female Talent at Annual Ad Week Europe Event


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Content marketing specialists know there is a great return on investments especially when teamed up with a quality telemarketing... Ronen Ben-Dror explores some options. Click here to read.

Native advertising is here to stay, probably. It is a good thing, possibly. So why can't Glen Martin decide whether he likes native or not? Click here to read.

We act as if “native advertising” is something new, so what is it and how should we best use it... an introduction to "native advertising!" Click here to read.

Just how safe is your data? With so much data held by publishers, could it be "hacked?" Elaine Tyson and Roy Beagley asked the people that know, the fulfillment bureaus themselves. Click here to read.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau found that more than a third of web traffic is fraudulent and BPA says only 40% of ads measured are actually viewable, but how much of a problem is this? Click here to read more....

Telemarketers are well aware of the Personal Identifier Question and recent changes in rules regarding the PIQ have caused somewhat of a debate in the industry. Ronen Ben-Dror of Blue Valley Telemarketing takes a look at what gives. Click here to read more....

Customers of telemarketing services often commission work without undertaking even the most elementary checks. What should the informed customer look for when choosing an outbound telemarketing agency? Click here to read,

Publishers need to address the USPS's suggested increase before it is too late. Click here to read,

Social media channels today are playing an interesting role in the future and the publishing world now views social media as a positive exchange with subscribers, so To Tweet or Not to Tweet, That Tis the Question Click here to read more....

How Well Do You Know Your Audience? The more you know, says Ronen Ben-Dror, this could eliminate the battle of qualifying leads. Click here to read more....

When executing a direct mail program, you should give lots of thought to the requirements of merge/purge. This could end up saving you a great deal of money, not forgetting making your life a great deal easier. Karen Tyson explains...

5 Mistakes You Should Avoid When Planning Your Audience Development Efforts by Kinjal Husges. Click here to read more....

To develop a realistic circulation forecast based upon current economic, industry, and company conditions is part of any circulation director's job. Benefit from the accountant's view and read Peter Sangiorgio's 5 Simple Tips to consider when developing a Circulation Budget. Click here for Peter's insight.

Businesses that put their customers front and center will ultimately win and the secret to successfully scaling CRM practices into any large organization is to really understand your markets. Benefit from Pam's years of experience and learn how to segment your file and become a success. Click here for Pam's insight.

Sending out a direct mail campaign requires a good lettershop operation... Karen Tyson explains....

For years the concept of earning and deferring income has confused many, but it is not that difficult. Get the facts behind earned and deferred income from Peter Sangiorgio. Click here to read more....

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Cash flow is probably the most important resource any business has. Benefit from Peter's insight and knowledge. Click here to read this exclusive article.

Circulation can be an asset on a sales call. Peter Lenahan explains what to do, and as importantly not what to do in this exclusive article. Click here!

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While all major publishers maintain marketing databases, it is just as important for small publishers too. Pam would argue it’s more important than ever to maintain a database as a tool for identifying, developing and implementing strategy. Click here!

Getting a direct mail package printed takes advance planning. Karen Tyson has some thoughts and ideas as to how to make this sometimes daunting prospect easier to handle... Karen Tyson explains....

Rebecca Sterner is one of the most respected people in the audience development job function. Now you can benefit from Rebecca's knowledge on Setting Up an Auto Renewal Program. Click here.

Enjoy and benefit from this exclusive article for CircSpot.com written by Peter Lenahan who explains why the circulation staff keep the sales force motivated, and how that benefits all concerned. Click here!

Reader's response: One of most intelligent articles I have ever read on ad sales and the all-important relationship with circulation. Well said. Harry S, Sacramento, Calif - via email.

Free magazines are different from "Controlled" as we all know, but the distinction is becoming less and less relevant to advertisers. Click here!

Evaluating how a campaign is working while agents are in the process of communicating with current or potential clients, live monitoring is an essential tool. Can companies afford to waste all those efforts on a careless approach to monitoring the campaign? Of course not. Click here to read more....

An accurate call list is an extremely important aspect in waging a successful telemarketing campaign. Scrubbing the list is the responsibility of the publishing company and the telemarketing agency. Click here to read more....
 

Virtually all marketing campaigns are most successful when they employ a multi-channel approach to a targeted audience... even in the "all-digital" world. Click here to read more....

On October 16th last year, a new regulation from the FCC went into effect. Ronen Ben-Dror asks how does the FCC rule affect you in the B2B environment? Click here to read more....

 
     
LES, POVS AND COMMENTARIES.
PROMOTIONS WE HAVE RECEIVED - AND WHY THEY ARE GOOD (OR BAD?)

 

WWD does good email subscription promotions.  This one is hard to resist.  It’s got a good subject line – “URGENT:  Prices Going up in July.  Lock in Lower Rate Today”.  The email subject line is just like envelope teaser copy – it has to pull prospects into the promotion and this one accomplishes the mission.

The copy and design is clean, colorful and loaded with benefits – the biggest of course is “Beat the prince increase!  Last chance for Current Rate”.

And, if you order with this offer, you can also save 20% on the 6 month online access price and pay only $59.  It looks as if this might actually be a last chance.  And, it’s always good to think a last chance offer might actually be a last chance for something.  This offer was overused in mail efforts – but you don’t see it as often in email. The offer is used to good effect here.

There’s a prominent Subscribe button to make ordering easy.  Following that is a picture of the web site and arrows that call out the features of the site.  Clearly, WWD offers a lot for the money.  And as subscription promotions are all about the offer, this is a winner. To see a larger version of the offer, click here.

This TV Guide gift effort is colorful and loaded with smart ideas – a two for one offer, special donor renewal price, holiday gift cards, multiple premiums and a reply-by date to move prospects along.

This is a very good email offer for a subscription to the print edition of WWD.  There is a lot to recommend the creative.  First, the email looks the way you expect WWD to look – smart, elegant and intriguing.

Second, the copy is filled with proven direct marketing technique.  The headline says “Summer Special for Industry Insiders” and that’s an appeal to the recipient’s ego.  It’s very flattering to be considered an industry insider and to be recognized as such by an industry leader such as WWD is even more appealing.  If done correctly, flattering prospects is a smart move.

There is a very strong subscription offer being made and the email leads with that offer – a 34% price saving on a six month subscription.  Offers drive promotions and it’s important as a marketer to remember that fact. 

You can’t miss the call to action – a GET IT NOW button to order coupled with a prominent respond by date.  This technique generally moves prospects along to order as it creates a fear of missing out.  Direct marketers have used reply by dates for years and years in mailed offers.

There are also benefits offered in addition to the special subscription price – more content, a new, bolder look and “extras” such as daily email of top stories and three issues of Beauty Inc.

This email offer uses smart direct marketing technique developed through many years of print campaign testing and marries it to the immediacy of email.  It’s difficult to ask for more.

We recently received an interesting direct mail package offering a subscription to House Beautiful magazine.  It’s interesting for a number of reasons. Click on the picture below for more details.
The New York Times wants me back - nice. An outer envelope that perforates on the right, left and top which then revels a single order form and a postage paid reply envelope (not shown.) It is an interesting offer '50% off for 16 weeks' - the 50% off I understand, but the 16 weeks has me a tad confused... more than a quarter, less than a half and not quite a third. If it was intended to get me thinking, it did.

I can get all the digital elements my little heart desires and access to nytimes.com. Ordering is made easy, I can phone, go online even use the USPS and try and reduce their losses.

Sadly, the reason I canceled my subscription weighs heavier on my mind as does the all-singing, all dancing offer I received, so for the moment NYT - thanks, but no thanks. To enlarge the image on the left, click on the image.
We recently received the regular offer from Opera News and this offer, like our old nanny Mary Poppins is practically perfect in every way. '3 Risk-Free Issues' always a vote grabber, a free gift offer of a CD, an involvement device, savings of 68%, and a reply by instruction. We may have died and gone to heaven!

Inside, or the reverse depending on your point of view, 'Free' is mentioned not once, nor twice but four times in as many paragraphs and an excellent re-stating of what we are going to get, or not if we don't reply in ten days. The Free issues are even restated on the reply card. Whoever wrote and designed this should be sent a bag of onions, because they sure as hell know them. It looks good, does all the right things and Opera News mail it regularly, so we can conclude that it works for them. (Click here or on the thumbnail to view larger image.


We received our monthly renewal offer from TV Guide this week, and it does all the right things and looks good, and makes ordering very simple. As with many publications the actual renewal date is not mentioned, something which annoys me as a subscriber, but pleases me as a marketer - can you tell I am a Gemini? IF you click on the image above, you can see what happens at the ordering stage, although this is made as simple as possible. Interestingly, for an online order form, and a renewal form at that, TV Guide offers a Bill Me option.
Here's a good offer from Oracle Magazine for a qualified controlled publication. It has good benefits copy and makes requesting Oracle Magazine easy with a couple of "Subscribe Now" buttons.  There is interesting PS copy offering a new publication for those who might be interested in Java Magazine as well as Oracle. The design is clean, uncluttered and attractive. To view the offer, click here. Not sure why the publisher is only offering six free issues, but given the quality of the promotion there must be a very good reason.

Here is the latest offering from People magazine. Nice personalized outer envelope, and a simple and concise brochure showing good covers and copy that sells the subscription. To order, it's old school, snail mail - no mention of ordering via the web anywhere. Nice package and well done to People for knowing that direct mail via the post office is still a good way to get orders.

Click on the image to see large versions.
people
Here’s what appears to be an advance renewal offer from Vegetarian Times.  It’s a renewal sweeps – smart idea because the original sub order was placed through PCH.  We’re assuming it’s an advance renewal as only one copy of the subscription has been received thus far.  The offer is a strong one –a 78% saving on the renewal plus a chance to win $25,000 (along with other prizes).  Package includes clever “sweeps” techniques on the outer envelope, an offer deadline and small flyer detailing prizes.  Good job, Vegetarian Times!

Click on the image to see large versions.
people
We received this double postcard from GQ magazine. The card looks great, has a nice cover and a nice free gift, but also has a rather confusing offer. '24 issues of GQ for only $20.00 - that's 83c (plus 17 cents shipping and handling) per issue; in other words $24.00 then. If you add 83 cents to 17 cents, you get $1.00 which if you then multiply by 24 issues you get $24.00. Click on the image to see large versions.
people
When my subscription of 'The Week' arrived last week, inside the envelope was an offer for 12 issues of 'The Oldie' magazine. As far as I am aware these magazines are independent of each other, but have a great deal in common.

This is a nice way of promoting a magazine that is probably already known to readers of another magazine and would be fairly cheap to produce and execute. Nice offer. Click on the image for a larger view of the outside and inside.
people
Always nice to get something from 'The Economist' as they always do things so well.

A free copy of 'The World in 2013' is a nice incentive for the readers among us, and a free tablet cover for the tecchies to boot - which also indirectly pushes the digital version.

The predominant red is great as it screamed "ECONOMIST" as soon as I opened my email. Oh and 69c a copy, they got me! [Click here or on image for large version].
people
'People' really knows how to use it's house file. Good offer, nice creative and use of personalization.

The offer is strong and the order form is pre-populated - what's not to love?
people
(Click on the image to see larger size and also the order form page.

This is an interesting offer. On the one hand it pushes newsstand sales, you can save $1.00 if you print out the coupon. However if you clicked on the Save $1.00 link you can also subscribe and get eight issues free.

An offer is an offer,
even though this offer
is not publishing related,
it has ignored basic
promotion rule 1-0-1:
Know Thy Prospect!

I AM NOT A
MEDICARE RECIPIENT!


To view larger size, click on the above image.

A recent offer from People magazine. It looks simple but a great deal of thought has gone into this offer, not least the cover featured on the tablets.


To view larger size, click on the above image.
Let's state it up front - we know the email at the end of the link is spam. Even so, it is a great example of why some design is a good thing in email promotions - even text only promotions. We cannot believe anyone who got this email would even have got so far a clicking a link! Click here to see the email, which is a screen shot taken from our computer.

Rebecca Sterner wrote on CircSpot on how to set up an autorenewal. It just so happens that today we received our auto renewal for Time. In all honesty we had not planned to renew it, but it is done, and although we could cancel it, $81.00 for 56 issues is not worth the hassle of canceling, so we guess the auto renewal worked... at least in our case.


To view larger size, click on the above image.
A CircSpot.com reader looked for something on the Times of London web site, and this popped up while the page they wanted to view was loading. He liked it, took a picture, and sent it to us - thanks Glyn C-R of Buckinghamshire.

To view larger size, click on the above image.

A CircSpot.com reader subscribed to Fast Company and paid $10.00 for a subscription. After placing the order, they received an email offering a $5.00 credit if she can get another person to subscribe in the next 6 hours. This seemed like a very clever idea to the the person who sent us the information - and we agree.

To view larger size, click on the above image.

Here's a nice promotion from The Nation.  It's quick to read, offers an invitation to receive exclusive free offers - it's a flattering offer and comes from a credible publication.

It ultimately leads you to a subscription landing page offering 4 free issues (very strong offer) plus attractive subscription prices and a choice of format - print or online access.
The promotion is clean and uncluttered with enough enticing benefits to attract readership.



Click on the image above for a larger version.