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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.


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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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