Media Series – Issue 3: Magazine Advertising

Iowa Print Advertising

Overview of Magazine Advertising Campaigns

Since they are both print media, magazines share some characteristics with newspapers. A couple of the major differences between them are frequency (magazines are issued far less frequently) and paper/print quality (magazines offer the use of better quality paper and graphics). Magazine advertising is generally more oriented toward image and attributes than price so you can focus more on the differentiating attributes of your product or service.


Upside of Magazine Advertising

Magazines may not be at their peak from a circulation standpoint but the medium continues to be very effective medium. Here are a few of what we consider to be the most prominent.

  • Circulation is generally large so you can touch a lot of consumers.
  • It’s possible to scale by geography. You can either choose regional publications or work with national ones that have regional flexibility.
  • It is possible to target by consumer interest. You can get a better response by targeting publications that appeal to consumers with a likelihood of interest in your brand.
  • People spend time with their magazines. It is read in a leisurely manner.
  • Magazines are generally kept around for quite a while of often shared or recycled with more than one reader.
  • With most magazines, you can create very high quality ads with intricate layouts and vibrant colors that will print and show well.

Downside of Using Magazines for Advertising

Magazine advertising does have its drawbacks, though, and you’ll want to factor these in as you evaluate the best options for your media plan.

  • With so many ads, it can be difficult to get yours noticed.
  • Since pages are fairly large, half or full page ads are needed to get noticed.
  • Magazines are generally not cheap and the higher the circulation the higher the cost.
  • A single magazine ad doesn’t do you much good. You need to advertise frequently.
  • You can’t generally scale it down to a local level effectively. Regional is about as small as you can really go.

Main Thing To Know About Magazine Advertising

I’m a big fan of magazine advertising. If you do it right, I think magazine ads not only do a good job of building brand awareness but you can really make them sell too. Unfortunately, not many people do them well. Magazine ads are often far too complicated with jumbled layouts, graphic confusion and too much copy. If you’re regional or national, magazines are a good idea but don’t just hire a professional to do them for you. Hire someone who actually knows what they’re doing. Feel free to contact us directly if you’d like more information on that.

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Article written by John Howard

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John is the founder and President of Frontera Marketing Group. A graduate of the University of Iowa, John had more than 20 years of professional experience in Sales and Marketing prior to founding FMG. His corporate background included a number of companies, industries and roles including National Account Manager, Product Manager, Brand Manager, Director of Trade Marketing, Director of Marketing and Vice-President of Marketing.

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