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

July 24th 2017

is the 205th day of the year and there are 160 days remaining until the end of the year.

 


TODAY'S NEWS HEADLINES:

Charlie Gard's parents have withdrawn their application to take their terminally ill son to the US for treatment.
At the High Court, a lawyer representing Chris Gard and Connie Yates told Mr Justice Francis that "time had run out" for the 11-month-old.
 
Jordan Speith has won the British Open at Royal Birkdale.


The International Monetary Fund has lowered its growth forecast for the UK to 1.7% for 2017.

The IMF has revised down its U.S. growth forecast from 2.3% to 2.1%. Sad.

The creators of the new television drama "Confederate," set in an imaginary world where slavery still exists in the United States, defended their vision after the concept provoked outrage on social media.

Actor John Heard, who played the father in the Home Alone films, has died at the age of 72.


Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner has denied colluding with Russia or having "improper contacts" ahead of a hearing.

Venezuela's opposition planned to plaster election centers with banners and rally in honor of dead protesters on Monday in a final week-long push to force President Nicolas Maduro into aborting a controversial congress.

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has given his sister-in-law $60,000 (£46,000) as a birthday gift.

Beijing police shut down part of a major road on Monday as they dealt with a rare protest in the Chinese capital.

Ben Affleck has scotched rumors he is quitting as the caped crusader after his upcoming role in Justice League.

Britain's Prince William and his brother Harry recall memories from their childhood 20 years after the sudden death of their mother, Princess Diana.

A suicide car bomb has exploded in the Afghan capital, Kabul, killing at least 30 people.

Iran's top judge called on the United States on Monday to release Iranians held in U.S. jails and billions of dollars in Iranian assets.

BORN TODAY:

1574 – Thomas Platter the Younger, Swiss
physician and author (d. 1628)
1725 – John Newton, English sailor and priest (d. 1807)
1802 – Alexandre Dumas, French novelist and playwright (d. 1870)
1860 – Princess Charlotte of Prussia (d. 1919)
1888 – Arthur Richardson, Australian cricketer and coach (d. 1973)
1895 – Robert Graves, English poet, novelist, critic (d. 1985)
1933 – Doug Sanders, American golfer
1935 – Derek Varnals, South African cricketer
1940 – Dan Hedaya, American actor
1948 – Michael Coveney, English author and critic
1949 – Michael Richards, American actor and comedian
1968 – Laura Leighton, American actress
1973 – Ana Cristina Oliveira, Portuguese model and actress
1973 – Amanda Stretton, English race car driver and journalist
1975 – Eric Szmanda, American actor
1982 – Anna Paquin, Canadian-New Zealand actress

DIED TODAY:
2016 – Marni Nixon, American actress and singer (b. 1930)
2012 – Chad Everett, American actor and director (b. 1937)
1992 – Arletty, French actress and singer (b. 1898)

TODAY IN HISTORY:

1567 – Mary, Queen of Scots, is forced to abdicate and replaced by her 1-year-old son James VI.

1823 – Slavery is abolished in Chile.

1847 – After 17 months of travel, Brigham Young leads 148 Mormon pioneers into Salt Lake Valley, resulting in the establishment of Salt Lake City.

1901 – O. Henry is released from prison in Columbus, Ohio after serving three years for embezzlement from a bank.

1950 – Cape Canaveral Air Force Station begins operations with the launch of a Bumper rocket.

1967 – During an official state visit to Canada, French President Charles de Gaulle declares to a crowd of over 100,000 in Montreal: Vive le Québec libre! ("Long live free Quebec!"); the statement angered the Canadian government and many Anglophone Canadians.

1969 – Apollo 11 splashes down safely in the Pacific Ocean.


1987 - Hulda Crooks, at 91 years of age, climbed Mt. Fuji. Hulda became the oldest person to climb Japan’s highest peak.

2001 – Bandaranaike Airport attack is carried out by 14 Tamil Tiger commandos, all died in this attack. They destroyed 11 Aircraft (mostly military) and damaged 15, there are no civilian casualties. This incident slowed down Sri Lankan economy.

2013 – A high-speed train derails in Spain rounding a curve with an 80 km/h (50 mph) speed limit at 190 km/h (120 mph), killing 78 passengers.

2014 – Air Algérie Flight 5017 loses contact with air traffic controllers 50 minutes after takeoff. It was traveling between Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and Algiers with 116 people on board. The wreckage is later found in Mali.
AND ANOTHER THING!
The president just wants to be loved.
Click here to read.

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

LATEST STRAIGHT TALK
The Myths of Circulation.
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 205 of 365: Police Day (Poland); Children's Day (Vanuatu); Pioneer Day (Utah).
NEW MAN IN NEW ROLE AT HEARST U.K.
'Hearst U.K.,... has announced the appointment of Robert Ffitch to the newly created role of Chief Strategy Officer' scribes hearst.co.uk.

Mr. Ffitch 'previously ran Manning Gottlieb OMD' reports Hearst and most 'recently, he was Director of Advertising Revenues at Telegraph Media Group.' For more, click on Mr. Ffitch.
STORYBOOK COLLECTION LAUCHED TO RAISE AUSTRALIAN LITERACY STANDARDS.
The collection is called ‘Great Australian Storybook Collection’ and it is a collection of fifteen books and says mumbrella.com.au 'aims to celebrate the best Australian children’s books. Mem Fox’s Possum Magic is the first book to be released, and will be free with the purchase of a metro or regional newspaper along with a collector case.' The other books will follow. The company behind the campaign to raise literacy standards is News Corp., which some could argue was responsible for reducing standards in the first place. For more, click here.
FORGET-ME-NOT?
'The battle between Google and France’s data protection authority over the reach of an order to remove links to material under the so-called “right to be forgotten” has been referred to the European Court of Justice' reports pressgazette.co.uk. Basically what is being said here is people should have the right to remove data from the internet if they want 'but Google says that that would have a devastating effect on freedom of speech.' Well it might at that, but 'France’s Commission Nationale Informatique et Libertes (CNIL) is demanding that de-listing of material under the right to be forgotten should have global effect.' For more, click here.
IPSO: The Sun was wrong to publish as fact unconfirmed claims prisoner died from smoking spice

MARIE CLAIRE'S MODERN FOUNDER DIES.
Évelyne Prouvost, the granddaughter of the founder of Marie Claire has died in a 'bicycle accident on the French island of Belle-Ile-en-Mer off the coast of Brittany' reports Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke at Women's Wear Daily.

Her grandfather Jean Prouvost started the original company back in 1937 but World War II meant the company was closed. Madame Prouvost 'brought Marie Claire back in 1976 and started the Marie Claire Group, which included 12 titles' says Ms. Bloomgarden-Smoke's report. For more, click here.
100 EXIT THE BUILDING.
The current cull at the New York Times is complete says Keith J. Kelly at the New York Post and it appears '100 employees at the Gray Lady have accepted “voluntary” buyout packages and are leaving the building' he says.

So the question now is will there be more layoffs? Says Mr. Kelly 'there is no word on whether the number will satisfy Times management — or whether involuntary layoffs will follow' and as you would expect the "management" at the New York Times are keeping tight lipped. For more of Mr. Kelly's report, click here.
BUYOUT PLANS FOR SOUTHERN CALIF. NEWS GROUP.
'Journalists at newspapers in Digital First Media's Southern California News Group got a memo on Friday announcing an unspecified number of buyouts, OC Weekly's Gustavo Arellano reported Friday' scribes Kristen Hare at poynter.org.

It seems as there has been a great deal going on behind the scenes and for that part of the story, click here.


"WHAT DO WE NEED?" - "MATERIAL";
"WHEN DO WE NEED NEED IT?" - NOW!"
Men's magazines... 'Month after month they pump out the same formulaic crap they've been chopping down trees for decades to produce' says staff at the New York Post.

We think it is fair to say the staff at the Post are not that enamored with the contents of most magazines aimed at men: 'GQ, the table of contents is... mind-numbing' says the report and they are not all that kind about Stephen Rodrick's efforts in Esquire writing 'writer Stephen Rodrick, in a weak feature on Bill Maher, proves he hasn’t a clue about the comedian’s MO, and the formidable actor Idris Elba is profiled in a very pedestrian work by Maximillian Potter' - ouch! For more, click here.
NEW YORK REAL ESTATES REPORTER DIES.
S. Jhoanna Robledo died last Wednesday after 'a brief battle with cancer' says Richard Horgan at Adweek. She was 46 years old.

She 'had been editor in chief of website Brick Underground, but she continued to occasionally contribute to New York magazine, where her real estate reporting career took hold.' For more, click here.
Time Warner CEO
Jeff Bewkes’s
Long Goodbye Begins...

The Time Warner Name
Will Disappear.
BRITISH VOGUE ADDS STAFF.
Edward Enninful, the guy at the top of the masthead at British Vogue is adding staff right, left and center including 'make-up artist Pat McGrath, Val Garland, Sam McKnight, Guido Palau and Charlotte Tilbury' reports Samantha Conti at wwd.com. Johan Svensson has been named creative director and 'former Vogue staffer and W photography director Caroline Wolff has been named editor-at-large' says Ms. Conti. For more, click here.
VIVA BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEK MEXICO!
'El Financiero and Bloomberg L.P.' have announced the ' launch of Bloomberg Businessweek México, a Spanish-language, bi-weekly edition' says Chris Roushat talkingbiznews.com.

'The first seven issues of Bloomberg Businessweek México will be included with the El Financiero newspaper at no additional cost' notes Mr. Roush and of course the publication will be on sale at all good magazine outlets in Mexico City and its environs.


'The magazine has a global circulation of 1.5 million with English-language editions published weekly in the Americas, Europe, and Asia, and additional local language editions available in Turkey, the Middle East, Hong Kong, China, and Indonesia.' For more, click the cover.
Rodale to use real estate holdings as collateral for $35M credit line.

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foxyform.com

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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foxyform.com

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 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.