Useful, accessible information on circulation and audience development for magazine publishing professionals.
ARTICLES, POVS AND COMMENTARIES.
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.
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.
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.
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....
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....
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....
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,
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....
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 QuestionClick 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....
Free magazines are different from "Controlled" as we all know, but the distinction is becoming less and less relevant to advertisers. Click here!
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!
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!
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....
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....
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.
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.
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.
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.
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...
is the 86th day of the year and there are 279 days remaining until the end of the year.
TODAY'S NEWS HEADLINES: The Duchess of Cambridge has been attending her final public engagements before going on maternity leave.
New safety rules have been introduced in the UK after 150 people on board the Germanwings Airbus A320 were killed.
Downton Abbey will come to an end
after the next series.
Joan Collins has said she never in a "billion years" expected to be made a Dame after receiving the honor at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
Buildings collapse in Manhattan
after a blast of gas.
Argentine appeals court has upheld a decision to dismiss a controversial case against President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.
Italy's top court is expected to decide whether to uphold the convictions of Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito for the murder of student Meredith Kercher.
BORN TODAY: 972 – Robert II of France (d. 1031);
1196 – Sviatoslav III of Vladimir (d. 1252);
1306 – Philip III of Navarre (d. 1343);
1785 – Louis XVII of France (d. 1795);
1863 – Henry Royce, car mechanic (d. 1933);
1903 – Betty Balfour, actress (d. 1977);
1914 – Ces Burke, cricketer;
1935 – Julian Glover, actor;
1935 – John Henry Dowse, rugby player;
1942 – Michael York, actor;
1943 – Keith Allan, linguist;
1943 – Mike Curtis, football player;
1958 – Wendy Jacob, sculptor;
1964 – Glenn Carter, actor and singer;
1968 – Stacey Kent, singer.
2012 – Warren Stevens, actor (b. 1919);
2012 – Garry Walberg, actor (b. 1921);
2002 – Milton Berle, actor (b. 1908).
TODAY IN HISTORY:
1513 – Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León reaches the northern end of The Bahamas.
1625 – Charles I becomes King of England, Scotland and Ireland as well as claiming the title King of France.
1851 – First reported sighting of the Yosemite Valley by Europeans.
1943 – World War II: Battle of the Komandorski Islands.
1977 – Two Boeing 747 airliners collide on a foggy runway on Tenerife in the Canary Islands, killing 583 people.
2009 – A suicide bomber kills at least 48 at a mosque in the Khyber Agency of Pakistan.
THE ECONOMIST ARE AT IT AGAIN! Embracing Apple's Watch to be exact, and from April 24th you will be abe to listen to The Economist on a watch. (you will be able to "hear" a "magazine" on a "watch" - are these great times or what. Subscribers with the watch can get headlines as well, for more, click here.
ON YER 'REDESIGNED' BIKE!
Cycling Plus is getting a new look, well after 300 issues you would, wouldn't you! Editor Rob Spedding said: “We last redesigned four years ago, so the time felt right for a new look and the great thing is we are doing it from a position of strength",' says a report on ppa.co.uk. For more, click here.
FIRST YOU SAY YOU WILL...
THEN YOU SAY YOU WON'T...
And this seems to be the case with 'sports-video producer CineSport' reports Keith J. Kelly at the New York Post.
The thinking seemed to have been it would 'bolster Sports Illustrated’s digital presence' says Mr. Kelly, then the fan sort of got covered and the deal seems to be off... at least for now.
'Gregg Winik, ... who founded CineSport about seven years ago, declined to comment 'notes Keith, and a spokesman for Time Inc. said “We don’t comment on mergers and acquisitions”, a spokesman with nothing to comment on... irony at its best. For more of Mr Kelly's report, click here.
REGIONAL NEWSPAPER CHAIRMAN DIES.
Douglas Graham chairman of regional newspaper group The Claverley Group, the parent company of the Express & Star, Shropshire Star, Jersey Evening Post and the Guernsey Press has died, he was 85.
Reports Helen Lambourne at holdthefrontpage.co.uk 'he worked in the family-owned newspaper company for his whole life and he led the creation of the Shropshire Star newspaper more than 50 years ago.'
MARRIOT WANTS TO BE THE BIGGEST!
The biggest 'publisher of travel articles online' in the world says whatsnewinpublishing.co.uk. It has launched Marriot Traveler a 'a digital travel publication that aims to be a city-specific resource for travelers.' Seems like a good idea, and way down yonder in New Orleans is the city getting the first 'Marriott Traveler treatment' says the report. For more, click here.
COUNTY MAGAZINE - NATIONWIDE!
The magazine Cornwall Life, about, wait for it - life in Cornwall, in the UK, is going UK-wide on the newsstands reports ppa.co.uk. 'Archant South West Group Editor Andy Cooper said: “Cornwall is more than just a place it is a lifestyle and we believe that Cornwall Life reflects this lifestyle and fits perfectly with our portfolio of national special interest magazines.”
Cornwall Life covers the food and drink, the wildlife and the history of the Cornwall as well as its landmarks and its language, its culture and art.' For more, click the cover.
ICELAND GETS GLAMOUR!
'365 Media Group has launched an Icelandic edition of Glamour magazine' reports fipp.com. It has its own website www.glamour.is and the site is in Icelandic - makes sense when you think about it!
This is the 17th global edition of the magazine with editions of the magazine available in the United Kingdom, United States, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Russia, Greece, Poland, South Africa, Brazil, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Netherlands, Mexico. For more, click here.
NEW LONDON FREEBIE HITS THE STREETS.
'City AM has today launched a new monthly magazine called Money' reports pressgazette.co.uk.
The magazine will be a supplement to the free paper that has a circulation of 108,000. It will be the third supplement the free newspaper carries along with 'lifestyle magazine Bespoke and property title Bespoke Living.' For more, click here.
IT'S AUTOMATIC, IT'S SYSTEMATIC, IT'S HYDROMATIC, IT'S PROGRAMMATIC & PROBLEMATIC?
'The demand for programmatic advertising is on the rise' says Kelsey Lundstrom at foliomag.com. 'Folio chatted with IBT Media’s programmatic sales director, Ana Browne to crack the code on its newest program'. For that click here.
Meanwhile, programmatic still proves that it has a way to go, thanks Private Eye!
CHARLIE HEBDO TO GET AWARD.
Charlie Hebdo is being awarded the PEN/Toni and James C. Goodale Freedom of Expression Courage Award later this spring.
Jean-Baptiste Thoret, will collect the award on behalf of all the staff at the French magazine at a gala in New York.
The publishing world has always attracted more than its fair share of mavericks, eccentric and oddball characters. “James, they'll get over it. Keep launching and growing.
Remember to value your talent, make the company a great place to work and everything will be just fine.” These are the words of Felix Dennis talking to James Tye of Dennis Publishing. Felix Dennis was an English publisher, poet, spoken word performer and philanthropist who died in June last year... so the question is, nine months on, is everything fine? Click here for James Tye's conversation with thedrum.com.
STAFF AXED ON SOUTH COAST!
Brighton daily The Argus, 'a regional daily [in the UK] is in talks with staff over plans to cut four editorial roles on its features and photographic desks' says holdthefrontpage.co.uk. Thee were job cuts last year we seem to recall and the latest circulation figures are not great.
Notes holdthefrontpage.co.uk 'the move comes weeks after the arrival of Mike Gilson as the paper’s new editor following his move from the Belfast Telegraph.' For more, click the cover.
Hearst UK’s group commercial director Ella Dolphin said at a conference in Europe this morning “we have a huge perception issue and I'll take it on the chin for us publishers here and we'll take some of the blame,” she said. “Over the last four or five years we’ve been through the biggest transition so we had to get our heads down and work on the engine.” What is the bella Ella talking about you may wonder, well apparently 'the magazine industry has a “huge perception issue” when it comes to articulating the value of its channel to clients' reports Natalie Mortimer at thedrum.com.
She was 'speaking at Advertising Week Europe ' says Natalie and as for the getting heads down and working on the engine, you need to click here to see how that can be done.
FACEBOOK MAY BE THE DEVIL...
The fact that the New York Times and Buzzfeed 'may publish straight into Facebook’s ecosystem' was discussed at Digiday’s Publishing Summit in Vail, Colorado.
Getting "referral" traffic is all well and good, but why would you want to put, possibly your very future, into the hands of someone else? 'The Facebook scheme raises some uncomfortable questions about what publishers are ready to give up in revenue and reader data to get Facebook’s referral traffic' says Lucia Moses of digiday.com and digiday ask some publishers 'should publishers post their content directly to Facebook?'. Click here for their answers.
When Saturday Comes, Britain’s leading independent football magazine, has this month launched a digital promotion of the iOS app, at every football stadium in the United Kingdom and Ireland, utilizing Exact Editions’ cutting edge geolocation technology, ByPlace.
In a groundbreaking promotion lasting until the 9th April, any fan at 238 stadiums will be able to freely access the comprehensive magazine content simply by downloading the free app on to their iPhone or iPad. This free access includes an extensive archive of back issues going back to 2009, as well as the most up to date issue, and bonus media.
Using digital partner Exact Editions’ unique ByPlace technology, the magazine have been able to mass target every football fan in the country with free access to the magazine in the specified area of the football stadium.
IS EVERGREEN CONTENT ABOUT TO BE COVERED IN BROWN? While some publishers are realizing the value of old content, (call it what you will, but that is what it is), the good folks at Forbes seem to have other ideas.
According to jimromenesko.com 'Forbes contributors were told Tuesday that their pay will be cut for visits to content that’s more than 90 days old, because “advertisers are increasingly buying premium ads for new content, not old”.'
What are we missing here? Old content is valued less because it is old, even though it is being read. Frankly we would be asking for our content to be removed after 90 days. People are looking at the content folks - it has to have as much value as content that gets the same amount of clicks whether it is 9, 90 or 900 days old! For the whole memo, click here.
ONLY EVER READ IT FOR THE ARTICLES...
(Yea... and I have a bridge I can sell you!)
'Most people's first interaction with Playboy involves secretly buying (or "finding") one of the print editions and hiding the contraband between the mattresses' says Michelle Castillo at adweek.com.
But now, guess what - people are going to the web site to read - wait for it - THE ARTICLES! Reports Michelle 'the site saw a 258% year-over-year lift in global unique visitors between January 2014 and January 2015. For more, click here.
Steve Brill may be "a schmuck" - (don't look at us, his wife said it!) but if he is "a schmuck" then he gives schmucks a good name. Mr. Schmuck, sorry, Brill sat down with The Observer's Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke and had a chat about this and that. For more, click here.
'Fashion show tabloid The Daily Front Row has parted company with its publisher Paul Turcotte' says Alexandra Steigrad at wwd.com.
Nobody seems to know why Mr. Turcotte has left the company and the person that probably does know, chief executive and editor in chief Brandusa Niro is keeping mum.
Ms. Steigrad does note in her article 'sources indicated that Niro’s business has been under pressure for some time' but whether this has anything to do with anything is not clear. For more, click here.
D.B. Hebbard at talkingnewmedia.com says 'B2B side of publishing has been slowly moving towards creating digital editions' - some would say very slowly in our opinion, but we digress. 'From Australia, Bite dental magazine uses the Adobe DPS to produce a native digital edition, while Georgia’s SBI uses a PDF solution to launch a new magazine for sales pros' says D.B. and to get the skinny on all of this, click here.
The Hoopla, an independent women’s news and commentary site, for women down under is to close after 'failing to find a sustainable business model' says publishersaustralia.com.au. The company is trying to sell the brand to other media owners as Jane Waterhouse CEO of Hoopla parent company We Magazines said “there is a lot of interest around the brand. What we have managed to do is keep that trust around the brand and there is interest from a couple of different media players and also other production people.” For more, click here.
BBC MAKES PUBLISHERS PAUPERS.
Who knew? Well The UK Times deputy editor certainly thinks this this is the case. 'The BBC is putting media companies that are seeking to make a profit “at a disadvantage” when the publicly funded body acts as a publisher' says Emma Tucker.
For those who may not know, the BBC is funded by a license fee UK residents pay each year if they own a television. You have to pay it, even if you don't watch the BBC. The license fee funds both TV and radio.
'Hosting a panel on the predictions for the future of the media, at Advertising Week Europe' yesterday reports Natalie Mortimer at thedrum.com 'Tucker lambasted the BBC’s ability to draw in a huge, global audience to its website and called for the remit of the licence fee to be “redefined”. For more of her comments (and they are pretty darn good,) click here.
NATIVE AND ME, OR IS THAT NATIVE AND I?
By GLEN MARTIN
I go back and forth as to whether I like native advertising or not and although I still cannot decide, I am finally leaning in one direction – it took a long time.
IF I WEAR MY CONSUMER HAT.
From a consumer point of view, the idea of native advertising is not something I embrace. I liken it to studies telling me a certain pill is safe and find the pill manufacturer performed the study. The study may be true, but would a company openly deride its own product? Given the choice between the pill manufacturer telling me a product is good, and an independent company telling me a product is good, I would choose the later every time – after all, it is how the audit bureaus have sold themselves for years.
IF I WEAR MY RETAILER HAT.
From a retailer point of view however, the idea of native advertising is very appealing, it means more revenue, more content and should enhance the platform where the content is appearing.
Recently I read an excellent article on native advertising on the Folio web site. The article made several assertions all of which seemed fair and reasonable. “Love it or hate it, native advertising is making a solid impact in the publishing world. Some companies are already making significant inroads in native advertising development, and it won’t be long before your advertisers will expect you to have a policy on whether or not you embrace it.”
This may well be true, but here is where I start having doubts as to the veracity of the above statement, and it is back to the pill analogy I’m afraid. If the article has been written by a Folio staff member like Michael Rondon, Bill Mickey or Casey Welton I would have little doubt the statement is accurate as I know their work, and I know they know what they are talking about.
But the text was labeled as “sponsored content” and the chances are good the author, who is not named in the article, is writing a piece of prose designed to move the audience towards the subject matter. Now you may be wondering what the difference is between ‘native advertising’ and ‘sponsored content’ and as the article itself says “in many cases they’re interchangeable” and “or the publisher’s editorial team could create content on behalf of brands so that it looks very similar to the publisher’s editorial content, but actually serves as an advertising platform for the brand. Buzzfeed’s sponsored content is an example of this.”
From a retailer’s point of view I can see how this is all very nice and cozy; from a consumer’s point of view, I am beginning to get a tad concerned.
NONE THE WISER.
In all honesty if I had not known the article was ‘sponsored content’ I would be none the wiser. It is the fact that I feel I can no longer trust the source of the material that concerns me. The chances are the good folks at Folio would not pass on information they did not think was a) true and b) beneficial – and since I am not paying for anything here, they have every right to do so – but there is a niggling question at the back of my mind.
In the article concerned, at no point on the page does is it even mentioned the article is sponsored, which is interesting because in the article itself it says “even with content that is akin to your own, be very specific and obvious about what content you’ve produced and what is ‘sponsored’ or contributed by a ‘trusted partner’.” To be absolutely fair, the home page does note the article is ‘sponsored content’ – but that’s all.
IF I FEEL SO GOOD, WHY DO I FEEL SO DIRTY?
The article also details out some positive facts about ‘native advertising’ but then, they would be positive wouldn’t they?
The article did however explain to me the concept of ‘native advertising’ which is something many have failed to do: “Native advertising is a form of content marketing in which an advertiser promotes content in a way that mimics the visual elements and tone of the content platform.” [My italics.] It all sounds a bit like a magician convincing us he really did saw his assistant in half… it creates an illusion… it is almost like the advertiser is trying to pull the wool over our eyes.
This article was one of the best I have seen on the whole subject of ‘native advertising’ and it all seems to make sense, so why does the whole idea make me feel a tad dirty?
More and more we make decisions on less and less – 140 characters of a Tweet, or in-depth interviews that barely last a minute or sound bites that sound too good to be true, and usually are. I have however, managed to come to a decision on what is and is not acceptable as far as content is concerned, a decision that may surprise you.
If I pay for a magazine, or any other form of content, I expect the content to be written by professionals who know their subject and write without bias to man, beast – or advertisers. If I get the content free, then ‘native content’ is the price I pay – but let’s make sure the lines are not blurred too much, shall we?
Morwenna Ferrier at theguardian.com says 'Serena Williams and US Vogue's cliche-free cover... is hugely welcome for any fan of diversity in fashion. But the way she has been portrayed – in colour and without tennis gear – is also worth noting.' For more, click the cover.
'The Straits Times issued a special March 23 edition on the life and work of Singapore's founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, who died early on March 23 at the age of 91.' To download a copy. click on the image below.
JAMIE IN PRINT.
Chef Jamie Oliver is to launch a print version of Food Tube, his online brand.
It will be a mini-magazine and published jointly with Time Out will be distributed inside the London issue. Food Tube magazine will launch on 28 April.
According to Roy Greenslade at The Guardian 'Oliver said: “what an absolute pleasure to be taking Food Tube into the wonderful world of magazines. Food Tube is a massive celebration of super-talented food lovers, chefs, experts and cooks, and to be sharing their knowledge, tips, recipes and ideas with the Time Out audience is really exciting”.' For more, click here.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY THE NATION
This month The Nation is celebrating its 150th birthday, even though it was not born until July 1865 - but when you are 150, you get to take certain liberties - what's a couple of months here and there!
A special issue is out (download here) weaving 'together voices from The Nation’s rich history with contributors writing about the current cultural and political moment. In a rich series archival excerpts, we reprint some of the best that was thought and said in our pages' says editor and publisher Katrina Vanden Heuvel.
The Nation is the oldest continuously published weekly magazine in the United States established in July 1865 on "Newspaper Row" at 130 Nassau Street in Manhattan. Former editors include Victor Saul Navasky, Carey McWilliams, and Freda Kirchwey.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO REAL SIMPLE.
Real Simple celebrates 15 years, not quite as long as The nation (see above) but just as worthy.
Says Chris O'Shea at adweek.com 'Real Simple was first imagined as every woman’s go-to guide for streamlining life. Readers still flock to the title for that, but in a different way.' To find out how different, click the covers.
HAPPY DAYS AT CONDE NAST.
Condé Nast broke a company record in total digital audience for February 2015. ComScore reports that the company’s portfolio of 21 owned and operated websites and 17 premium digital video channels reached an all-time high of 80.9 million consumers for the month. This represents a 5% increase over the previous high in December 2014 and a 75% increase year over year. Additionally, Condé Nast’s mobile audience set a new company best reaching 53.4 million adults and boasting a 132% increase year over year.
In the Lifestyle Category Condé Nast has ranked #1 in Affluent Millennials for 16 consecutive months and currently ranks #2 for total unique visitors and for total views.
DODOS... DINASAURS... MOUNT KULAL...
all have one thing in common, they are extinct and says Susan Currie Sivek at pbs.org 'some magazine industry observers have recently said that the “all-you-can-read” or “Netflix for magazines” subscription model' are also doomed. But, says Susan, the “all-you-can-read” or “Netflix for magazines” companies feel their fates are far better than those of the late lamented dodo, dinosaurs and indeed Mount Kulal. Susan spoke to Magzter and Readly to see what fuels their optimism. For more, click here.
REVOLUTIONARY PRINTING PROCESS.
It 'allows the creation of bespoke individual editions of newspapers [and] is being [tested] by a regional publisher' reports David Sharman at holdthefrontpage.co.uk and 'the innovation... means it is possible to change what is to be printed without swapping plates on the press and will allow for more targeted campaigns for advertisers.'
'The Apple Watch has already been spotted within the pages of several fitness and fashion-oriented magazines' says Juli Clover at macrumors.com and indeed Kate Bock is on the cover of Fitness magazines sporting... an Apple watch!
'Fitness Magazine shared some behind-the-scenes details on the cover shoot,' but not all, as Fitness asked for some details that had previously been supplied to be withdrawn - such is the chagrin of life. For details of what went on, click here.
TIME FOR TIME TOWN HALL.
Alexandra Steigrad at wwd.com reports the meetings were held last week at 'the eighth floor auditorium in the Time & Life building in Midtown Manhattan.'
Visions and desires were shared and says Ms. Steigrad 'insiders said the management meeting included a presentation dubbed: “Monetizing ‘News’ at Scale” by Time editor in chief Nancy Gibbs and publisher Meredith Long. Karen Kovacs, the group publisher of People and Entertainment Weekly, gave a presentation called: “The Power of the Red Carpet".' All sounds very exciting, for more, click here.
'It should be a very good spring for The Strand Magazine' says Richard Horgan at adweek.com because this issue has something rather special to share.
It is, says Mr. Horgan, 'a never-before-published 4,800-word story by Tennessee Williams titled “The Eye That Saw Death,”... [a] ghoulish tale of a man who, at age 30, suffers through increasingly harrowing visions.'
Tennessee Williams is so famous, they were going to name a state after him, unfortunately Tennessee already existed, so he had to settle for just being famous - (at least that is according to a tweet we just received.) For more, click here.
RETURN TO SENDER...
On March 6th the Postal Regulatory Authority returned 'proposed adjustments to rates on Standard Mail, Periodicals, and Package Services' back from whence they came, namely the United States Postal Service. They need clarification on some points, not unreasonable in the scheme of things.
The USPS clarified, but not well enough because according to Al Urbanski at dmnews.com 'the Postal Regulatory Commission has once again returned the request to the U.S. Postal Service for further accounting.' For more details, click here.
FIRST THE ECONOMIST GETS ONE,
NOW, SO DOES THE GUARDIAN!
Katharine Viner has been named as the new editor in chief at The Guardian in the UK. Ms. Viner has been with the newspaper since 1997 and last year was named editor in chief of Guardian US.
In a recent straw poll amongst the staff, Ms. Viner was the one staff wanted to see in the big office, so everyone should be hap-hap-happy! For more, click here.
PROMOTIONS WE HAVE RECEIVED - AND WHY THEY ARE GOOD (OR BAD?)
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.
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.
'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!
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.
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.