Posted tagged ‘advertising’

Tracking Consumers : Not Just For the FBI

March 15, 2009

person-question_1According to an article on BusinessWeek.com, a new company named Sense Networks is working to track consumer movements through their cell phones. It then groups consumers by ‘tribes’ based upon the places they visit and upon common behaviors.

In the article, the focus is on how this data could be used to create much more targeted advertising campaigns, but upon reading it, I began thinking about how it could be used by magazines, newspapers and books.

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Some Cheese for that Whine… Newspapers (Part 1): Changing Distribution

February 28, 2009

dog-newspaper-21I recently finished a series of “Some cheese for that whine” on the book industry. Now, it’s time to turn our focus to an arguably more doomed industry: the newspaper industry. There are a lot of major issues facing the news world today, and competing with the internet is among the most demanding.

The image of a young boy with a baseball cap, riding a bike with a satchel of newspapers is a pretty American image – but the movement toward digital media may mean no more newspaper boys, and no more having fido fetch the paper (though who gets to tell them they’re fired?)

Newspapers have been threatened before. They were said to be doomed with the birth of radio… and again with the birth of TV. However, this time is different.

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Building Blocks of Blogs

February 11, 2009

Blogs are a hot item these days. Everyone seems to have one – or to want to have one. There are several things that should be considered, though, before you ‘roll out the presses’ – or, rather, don’t.
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Books: The Only Ad free Media Today

October 28, 2008

I discussed a little bit in my last post how media these days seems to revolve around advertisers. It’s no longer a system where content is created for readers, then advertisers pay to be seen by those reads. Now, frequently, content is devised to interest advertisers, since they pay the overhead costs, then it is ‘marketed’ to readers.

Most of our media today exposes us to ads. Conservative sources say the average American is exposed to at least 347 ads a day – but other estimates are as high as 3000 ads. Newspapers, magazines and websites all expose us to them. The only media source that doesn’t expose us these days is books – except for the few pages at the back that tell us other books the publisher thought we might like.

Maybe that is part of the reason e-books and e-book readers haven’t caught on as much as their manufacturers might like.

Books are the one media that consumers really expect to be what THEY want. They aren’t personally interested in book brands – most readers couldn’t tell you who publishes their favorite books. They read because they enjoy it, because it provides a longer escape from reality then a magazine. So, any attempts to change this reading behavior is sure to be slow. And it needs to really consider what readers want and how they use books. (Bnet recently wrote an article on this).

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The Newspaper Industry is Walking Backwards

October 23, 2008

There are two types of magazine publishing: Trade and consumer. The financial set-ups for these two are drastically different. There are also two types of newspapers: Free Dailies, and regular papers. Again, the financial blue prints are supposed to be very different.

Essentially, however, Trade magazines and free dallies follow a similar blue print. Consumer magazines and regular newspapers also see similarities.

Traditionally, consumer magazines/newspapers create content that is appealing to consumers, then, because consumers use/read/view their product (to the point they will pay for it) companies trying to market to that market segment advertise in the magazine or newspaper, with the hope that consumers of the magazine will then also buy their products. Some customers even enjoy looking through the ads. This has worked fairly well for a long time now (though, some companies are turning off of print ads because it’s hard to measure the direct response).

In contrast, trade magazines and free dailies are … free. They don’t cost their readers anything. Instead, they are paid for by the companies that advertise in them. Sometimes (at least according to my experiences in trade publishing) this means that editorial revolves around advertisers, and caters to them (rather then readers). This method seems to make less sense – by catering to advertisers you essentially make their ads less successful. At least in trade publications, they can get away with this because you’re dealing with business information, so the readers are partially reading the publication for the same information that manufacturers/advertisers want them to have.

But recent trends in the consumer magazine world make no sense. Ditto on newspapers, though for different reasons. (more…)