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

October 8th 2015

is the 281st day of the year and there are 84 days remaining until the end of the year.

Fifa provisionally suspends president Sepp Blatter, secretary general Jerome Valcke and Uefa chief Michel Platini for 90 days.

Svetlana Alexievich wins the 2015 Nobel Prize for literature.

The UK is to station troops in the Baltic in order to counter "Russian aggression".

Authorities have called off the search for the sunken ship El Faro which sailed into a hurricane with 33 people aboard.

A Muslim lawmaker from Indian-administered Kashmir is beaten up in the state assembly by members of the Hindu nationalist BJP for hosting a "beef party".

Donald Trump's challenge to a planned offshore wind farm goes to the UK's Supreme Court. He said the 11 turbines would spoil the view.

The Navy SEAL who shot dead Osama bin Laden during the raid in Abbottabad in May 2011 has spoken out after he was the subject of apparent death threats from Islamic State.

Deutsche Bank has warned investors it will post a net loss of €6.2bn for the third quarter.
Keanu Reeves has said he is still hopeful that a third Bill & Ted film can be made and confirmed that a script is being worked on.
US actor Randy Quaid claims he is being detained by the Canadian border agency and threatened with deportation because of a property dispute in California.
Feminist protesters jumped barriers as stars walked the red carpet for the London premiere of the film Suffragette.
Hillary Clinton has come out against the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement championed by Barack Obama.

1585 – Heinrich Schütz, German organist and composer (d. 1672)
1789 – John Ruggles, American lawyer and politician (d. 1874)
1834 – Walter Kittredge, American violinist and composer (d. 1905)
1883 – Dick Burnett, American singer-songwriter (d. 1977)
1890 – Snuffy Browne, Barbadian cricketer (d. 1964)
1895 – Zog I of Albania (d. 1961)
1895 – Juan Perón, Argentinian general and politician (d. 1974)
1928 – Bill Maynard, English actor
1929 – Betty Boothroyd, English academic and politician, British Speaker of the House of Commons
1932 – Ray Reardon, Welsh snooker player
1939 – Paul Hogan, Australian actor, producer, and screenwriter
1941 – Jesse Jackson, American minister and activist
1941 – Shane Stevens, American author
1944 – Susan Raye, American singer
1946 – Bel Mooney, English journalist and author
1948 – Sarah Purcell, American radio and television host
1949 – Maggie Ollerenshaw, English actress
1949 – Sigourney Weaver, American actress, singer, and producer
1956 – Stephanie Zimbalist, American actress
1962 – Bruno Thiry, Belgian race car driver
1962 – Chen Xiaoxia, Chinese diver
1964 – Ian Hart, English actor
1964 – CeCe Winans, American singer-songwriter
1968 – Emily Procter, American actress
1970 – Matt Damon, American actor, producer, and screenwriter
1981 – Ruby, Egyptian singer and actress
1985 – Elliphant, Swedish singer
1993 – Molly Quinn, American actress and producer

2011 – Roger Williams, American pianist (b. 1924)
2002 – Phyllis Calvert, English actress (b. 1915)
1992 – Willy Brandt, German politician, 4th Chancellor of Germany, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1913)
1967 – Clement Attlee, English soldier, lawyer, and politician, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (b. 1883)
976 – Helen of Zadar (b.???)

1075 – Dmitar Zvonimir is crowned King of Croatia.

1600 – San Marino adopts its written constitution.

1829 – Rail transport: Stephenson's The Rocket wins The Rainhill Trials.

1860 – Telegraph line between Los Angeles and San Francisco opens.

1871 – Four major fires break out on the shores of Lake Michigan in Chicago, Peshtigo, Wisconsin, Holland, Michigan, and Manistee, Michigan including the Great Chicago Fire, and the much deadlier Peshtigo Fire.

1921 – KDKA in Pittsburgh's Forbes Field conducts the first live broadcast of a football game.

1932 – The Indian Air Force is established.

1952 – The Harrow and Wealdstone rail crash kills 112 people.

1970 – Vietnam War: In Paris, a Communist delegation rejects US President Richard Nixon's October 7 peace proposal as "a maneuver to deceive world opinion".

1974 – Franklin National Bank collapses due to fraud and mismanagement; at the time it is the largest bank failure in the history of the United States.

1982 – Cats opens on Broadway and runs for nearly 18 years before closing on September 10, 2000.

2001 – U.S. President George W. Bush announces the establishment of the Office of Homeland Security.

I don't know whether my job is hard or not... certainly it is not the hardest, as if I would know what that is... but I do know who has the easiest job.
Click here to read.

For previous 'And Another Thing' articles, click here.
It’s far from too early to think about gift subscriptions.  In fact, it’s too late for this year, so let’s plan next year’s gift promotions.
Click here to read.

For previous 'Straight Talk' articles, click here.

October 8th 2015
For the third time in eight years whish is not surprising since 'TV Guide Magazine’s circulation has plummeted since its heyday in the 1970s' says Todd Spangler at although the the magazine has been making a profit since 2009.

NTVB Media is the new owner which publishes 'TV Weekly magazine, a region-specific television guide marketed in partnership with 160-plus U.S. newspapers with a total circulation of about 1 million; the company also publishes custom mags for customers of pay-TV providers including Comcast, Dish Network and Time Warner Cable' says Mr. Spangler. For more, click here.

Australia Post has launched a campaign from GPY&R Melbourne which emphasizes the role it can play in helping small businesses reach international as well as local audiences.

So says Matthew Patane at the Des Moines Register even though 'The New York Post reported late Tuesday that Virginia-based Media General plans to drop the Meredith deal due to backlash from shareholders' says Mr. Patane. But the boards of both Meredith and Media General 'continue to recommend their deal' and Meredith spokesman Art Slusark says 'both companies have signed a merger agreement and are "confidant in the strategic rationale behind both the merger and the shareholder value it will create".' For more, click here.

Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Figure Skater Fitness Magazine Signe Ronka has announced the launch of a quarterly digital magazine for figure skaters, coaches, parents and the whole figure skating community. Says the website 'our mission is to provide figure skaters, coaches and parents with leading information on everything you need to know about what it takes to train like a figure skater.' For more, click here.

Seb Joseph at says 'the arrival of the Financial Times’ revamped site is getting closer, signaling a shift in how its content is tailored to readers who are increasingly personalizing what they read via Facebook and Google.'

'To help get the site's content in front of more eyeballs, the publisher has scrapped parts of its mobile strategy' says Seb and 'the FT’s site is going mobile first, with a responsive design that it hopes will close the gap between mobile readers and revenue.' Fore more, click here.

Digital Advertising’s Uncertain Future Focuses on Publishers.

This time a story telling us that ad blocking is not much threat, indeed it's just hype and the number prove it. As Bill Cromwell says at 'while everyone seems very worried about ad blocking, no one seems to know how big a threat it is' which is just about par for the course that is called all-things digital. Bill even suggests 'none of these discussions cite actual data... if we’re going to have this debate, we should have some facts to back it up.' Hold on, is Mr. Cromwell suggesting we base arguments on (pause for intake of deep breath!) - FACTS! Bill, we love you! Do you know how many page views in the USA are being blocked? 0.1% which increases to 4.9% if you include the rest of the world.

For more of Bill's excellent report... based on those pesky facts that always ruin a good argument, click here.

October 7th 2015
UK regional publisher Johnson Press has told shareholders it is to close eleven free newspapers in a cost-cutting endeavor. Eight titles have closed including the Peterborough Citizen, Rugby Review and Sheffield Gazzette. Three others, including the South Bognor View have been folded into other existing publications.

Meanwhile the Bridgwater Mercury which is owned by Newsquest is to close its office in the town of Bridgwater and move into offices in Taunton sharing space with staff of the Somerset County Gazette.

Owner of the UK's Daily Star, Richard Desmond has cut the price of the Daily Star to 20p which says Mark Sweney at 'resulted in a UK sales boost of 23,000 copies on Monday.' The Sun also saw an increase on Monday 'in part thanks to a Tesco token collect promotion.'

There have been quite a few cover price changes in the past few days affecting Northern and Shell owned newspapers, the Saturday and Sunday editions of the Star had their cover price reduced by 50% which could cost 'as much as £400,000 a week depending upon how many additional sales were notched up' says Mark. For more, click here.
Penton has announced that it has acquired World Tea Media, the leading event and digital information company dedicated to the global tea industry. World Tea Media serves the growing North American specialty multi-billion dollar tea market. This acquisition complements Penton’s global leadership of information services across the lifestyle and food industries. World Tea Expo will be led by Fred Linder, Group President of Penton.

It might be if publishers in London are to be the guide. And if "in" will soon be "out" it begs the question why? 'The main reason' says David Hicks at 'is the need for multiple device design layouts to be covered off by one 'design' workflow. InDesign does not create 'responsive' layouts, and also creates an 'image' of the page, as opposed to HTML layouts, which use rich text, meaning searchable functionality, shareable content, and flexible in publishing terms.' Seems like David knows what he is talking about, so for more, click here.
News of chaos on hump day cannot be a good thing. Lauren Johnson is the purveyor of the chaos news at where she notes 'the Europe Court of Justice ruled that the "Safe Harbor" agreement—which thousands of U.S. tech companies rely on to collect data from users in other countries—is invalid.'

The agreement is a pact between Europe and the US that basically 'lets technology companies treat data collected in Europe the same as it is treated in the U.S.' Continues Laura 'without Safe Harbor, individual European countries may start setting up their own data regulations, meaning that U.S. tech companies would have to abide by dozens of different regulations, which could become a bit of a nightmare for global marketers.' This actually could be good news for consumers... but consumers should not count their chickens just yet. For more of Laura's illuminating article, click here.

Vice News Managing Editor Departs for Newsweek

Reddit launches Upvoted to feature its best news without the trolls

October 6th 2015
The rumor mill has been grinding away for weeks concerning layoffs at Tribune Publishing and yesterday they came to fruition.

'The company announced a round of voluntary buyouts' says but you can bet your bottom dollar the layoffs will cease to be voluntary if not enough people volunteer. 'The Los Angeles Times will be hit particularly hard, with CNN reporting at least 50 editorial positions being sliced' says the report which can read in full by click here.

...because according to Julia Greenberg at 'with more than 1 million digital-only subscribers and 1.1 million print-and-digital subscribers, the Times says it has more subscribers than ever before in its 164-year history.' This is good new indeed except for the purveyors of the "print is dead" theory... and even they may be happy at this news. For more, click here.

A few short weeks ago it seemed like Meredith was being purchased by Media General and then Starboard Capital 'went public saying it was against the Meredith acquisition' says Josh Kosman at the New York Post. As a share holder Starboard Capital's concerns were taken on board. Now says Mr. Kosman another shareholder, this time with 7% is not supporting the deal, and this shareholder is Oppenheimer, so it may well be the deal is all but dead. For more of Mr. Kosman's report click here, and rumors that Better Homes and Gardens is being renamed Better Gardens and Home are just that... rumors!

'Gary Lacinski, former publisher of seminal gay entertainment guide HX' has died at the age of 53.
'Lacinski came to HX Magazine from Wunderman Worldwide in the early 1990's' reports 'and was largely responsible for the weekly's growth. He stayed with the publication until it was absorbed by rival gay nightlife guide Next Magazine in 2009.' For more, click here.

It’s far from too early to think about gift subscriptions.  In fact, it’s too late for this year, so let’s plan next year’s gift promotions.  It’s worth your time to think about this source because gift donors are generally loyal, happy subscribers to your magazine who readily renew their gift subs.  And, this source costs less to promote than other direct mail business.

The starting point for increasing existing gift business is a review of the results of last year’s efforts.  You need to analyze number of gifts per donor for both renewals and new donors as well as response to individual promotion efforts.  History will tell you how many efforts to make to previous donors.  You can use renewal-type mail efforts, tip-ons, house ads and inserts to promote gifts.   And, of course, you can email offers to your subscribers and highlight gift subscriptions on your website, too.  For some, mail isn’t worth the cost so you'll want good reports to tell you whether or not it’s cost justified for your magazine.

Most publishers start gift efforts in October and continue through December.  Use these issues for promoting and consider a billing and/or renewal effort buckslip offering gifts during this time period, too.  Be sure to test that carefully because it’s possible selling gifts in your renewals or billing efforts might depress pay up and regular renewals.  And, most of us would not be willing to make that trade off.

Those new to gift business sometimes wonder if promoting to non-subscribers makes sense.  But, what would your approach be?  “Well, we know you don’t like us enough to buy a subscription for yourself, but why not give one to your best friend?”  Don’t think so.

Most gift business is Christmas or holiday gift business.  Some have tried to offer gifts for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or Graduation but that’s tricky and doesn’t seem to work well for most magazines.

When it comes to creative, seasonal themes – snowflakes, Santa, holly – usually work best.  Bright colors help put people in a holiday mood.  You'll need to grapple with price testing to determine what kind of discount to offer for multiple subscriptions or as a discount for the donor’s own subscription renewal.  As with other promotions, premiums can be effective. 

Managing gift subscriptions and increasing your donor file is simply a matter of good promotion reports and analysis plus some testing – just like every other subscription source. (Click here, or on the picture below to see the components in a larger format.)

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.

The cooking magazine devoted to the promotion of Rachael Ray and possibly extra virgin olive oil is ten years old. And to celebrate, owner Meredith is moving the order of the words around in the magazine's title. There are other changes as well including layouts and a new snazzier logo. Rumors that The Economist is being renamed Economist The and OK! will now be KO! are just that - rumors.

It is called Coach (on right) and is a health and fitness publication available London-wide tomorrow. The print run is 300,000 which is an awful lot of fitness for the London streets and is targeted says at 'ABC1 men in the 24-55 age range and across a broad range of life stages.'

200,000 copies will be handed out in London, the rest nationally at 'carefully selected sports and leisure clubs, gyms, hotels and businesses.' For more, click the cover.

'It’s a growing problem for ad-supported publishers: How do you get people to stop using ad blocking software?' It's a fair question being posed by Lucia Moses at and the answer may be accepting the fact the if you are nice to your customers... they may be nice to you. She writes 'many publishers including The Washington Post, Atlantic and the U.K.’s Channel 4 are trying to counter the rise of ad blocking by appealing to their readers’ better instincts or blocking access to content altogether. “Please consider disabling it for our site, or supporting our work in one of these ways,” The Atlantic asks before directing people to subscribe to its magazine or newsletter.' So giving your customers options, treating your customers with respect... as the sainted Martha would say "it's a good thing!". For more, click here.

October 5th 2015
''Findlay Media, part of the Mark Allen Group, has completed the acquisition of The Airport Publishing Network' says and the 'APN team will continue to operate from its Paddock Wood office and will continue to be managed by its founder, Tim Ornellas.' For more, click here.
'The Canadian Society of Magazine Editors (CSME) is hosting an event to discuss the best way to plan art direction for a multi-platform brand and how to get the most out of your art budget' says The event will be on Wednesday and the speakers will be 'Chris Bond, creative director, digital editions (Canadian Living, ELLE Canada, The Hockey News, Style at Home, etc.) at TVA Publications, and Jessica Hoston, creative director at The Kit' says the report. For more, cliquez ici.
So just how many of those "expert" predictions do come true... we keep track.
Time to plant tongues firmly in cheeks!

did indeed
Who... What should happen... What did happen...
Matthew Patane,
Des Moines Register,
Both Meredith Corp. and Media General said they are sticking by a $2.4 billion deal that would combine their companies despite a report saying the deal is in danger. Too early to tell.
Medialife Magazine 10/5/15 TV shows most likely to be cancelled - The Player, Minority Report, Sleepy Hollow, Blood and Oil - possibly before November sweeps. Too early to tell.
Roy Beagley after the first republican debate, based on Trump's performance. Donald Trump will not be the double-digit front runner by the start of winter. As of 10/5/15 Trump's lead was 5.5% (Figs from
Roy Greenslade,
The Guardian,
Pearson is said, yet again, to be exploring a sale of the Financial Times. How many times down the years have I read that rumor? And how many times must I dismiss it as speculative nonsense? Pearson sold a few days later.
Medialife Magazine 8/7/15 Candace Cameron-Bure is rumored to be joining The View. Candace Cameron-Bure did indeed join The View.
And Another Thing - 3/26/15. Lester Holt needs to do more, why are NBC not using Lester Holt more? Lester replaced Brian Williams on NBC Nightly News.
Jack Dorsey has been named as the chief executive of Twitter replacing Dick Costolo. The Guardian’s director
of digital strategy Wolfgang Blau is joining Condé Nast International as chief digital officer.
The founder of Wikipedia
has issued a call for
volunteer editors to
combat the whitewashing
of its accounts by the PR industry.
Top Right publisher of 17 magazines is to retire 'the venerable Emap brand which has been a publishing institution for almost 70 years' says Mark Sweney at “Across the Emap portfolio 67% of revenues are from digital and events. Over the next 12 to 18 months all of the titles will become digital-only” says Duncan Painter, CEO of Top Right. Basically says the report, it has not been possible to get "the market" to accept Emap as a digital brand... so get rid of Emap. It will be interesting to see how the likes of Architects’ Journal, Construction News, MEED and Health Service Journal fair. For more of Mark's rather sad report, click here.

'Winning the fight against ad blockers might mean not fighting them at all' suggests Ricardo Bilton at Tech site Techdirt is allowing users to turn off advertisements if they want to with just a few clicks of the mouse. “We know that a lot of our audience is using ad blockers, so we figured, why fight it?” said Techdirt editor Mike Maznick. “The key for us is to not piss off our audience while respecting their time and wishes.” It will be very interesting to see what happens in this case, and for more of the whys and the whens and what ifs, click here for Mr. Bilton's article.
'Pacific Magazines today announced a partnership with Meredith with the launch of' says “This is the perfect marriage of two powerful wedding publishers,” says President and CEO, Woody Pastorius and since it will soon be summer down under, now is the perfect time to plan a wedding. For more, click here.
Fake Newsstand Comes to Fake Times Square. Conde Nast Teams Up With Snapchat

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!

How to manage a telemarketing campaign and make it work for you. Karen Tyson explains....

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 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....



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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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' 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?
(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!


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.

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A 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.

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A 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.

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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.

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