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Consumers Want Print Magazines, but Also Relevance


Despite major shifts in the publishing world—including dramatic declines in print ad revenues and numerous closures of print publications—consumers still want to read print magazines: 92% say they plan to stick to print; and when given the choice of print, e-reader, or online delivery, 90% still prefer print, according to a survey from the CMO council.

Just 17% of magazine readers surveyed prefer to read electronically, and 9% prefer some form of e-reader device.

Among such readers, 24% say they intend to eventually switch over to an e-reader, whereas 67% say they want to physically hold their magazines, even though they acknowledge the e-reader has its place. Some 9% already read magazines on an e-reader.

Below, other findings from Leveraging Loyalty to Transform Publishing by the CMO Council, which examines the topic of relevance in publishing and advertising.

Although 59% of readers say most of the content in the magazines they subscribe to is relevant to them, just 27% say all the content is relevant. Still, 14% say they increasingly they find content to be untailored to their interests—causing them to read less than half of those magazines.

Though editors strive to provide readers with a steady stream of relevant content and information—regardless of channel—57% of magazine readers say the only personalized aspect of their print-magazine experience is their name printed on the mailing label.

Most readers say they are not tapped for their own preferences: Only 30% have ever been surveyed about content they would prefer reading.

Moreover, 78% of readers say they would be more inclined to resubscribe to a publication that tailored its content and information to individual preferences—signaling an opportunity for publishers to leverage customer data to help advertisers engage in timely, targeted, and measurable promotions.

Looking for great digital marketing data? MarketingProfs reviewed hundreds of research sources to create our most recent Digital Marketing Factbook (May 2010), a 296-page compilation of data and 254 charts, covering email marketing, social media, search engine marketing, e-commerce, and mobile marketing. Also check out The State of Social Media Marketing, a 240-page original research report from MarketingProfs.

Other findings:

  • 52% of readers say they go online to find more information about advertisements they see in their printed magazines.
  • 63% say they would go online for more information if the advertising in their printed-subscription magazines were customized.
  • 59% say they would respond to personalized advertising on an e-reader.
  • 67% of readers say if asked they would supply a magazine publisher with more information regarding their preferences and interests to help that publisher send more customized and relevant information; 24% say they might supply more information; and 6% say they would not.

About the data: Findings are from a survey of 1,000 US consumers age 18+ who subscribe of at least one magazine, conducted by the CMO Council in April 2010.

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  • by susan Fri Jun 18, 2010 via web

    Excellent information - especially since we are reviewing our marketing communications/advertising strategy and how to incorporate all the social media tools into it. We have a variety of ages in our marketing team and there is a definite distinction between the older vs. younger relative to the viability of print vs. online tools. This information provided some good statistics that we can use in development of our strategy and also points to the fact that we are not too far behind realtive to integrating social media into the mix - especially since we are in the healthcare space, which is quite conservative. Thanks!

  • by Tue Jun 22, 2010 via web

    Great Information and insight. I just wanted to be sure to note the sponsors of this report since it was not included - InforPrint Solutions Company. I always try to reference my work and Know you do too :)

  • by Thu Jul 22, 2010 via web

    I see that the study says people prefer print ads, but I don't see it in the B2B trade pubs. I still get a few subscriptions but there are no more than 10 advertisers per issue. Without paid advertisements, they will not survive. So while the study is well documented, I just do not see the B2B trade publication results - those publications are razor thin!

    Now I can definitely see the value of "consumers" saying this - The Oprah Magazine and Sports Illustrated are a different animal that B2B pubs.

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