The Value of Magazines
The print industry has been beleaguered in the last few years by multiple forces. At worst there have been shouts of the death of print and at best, concerned trepidation in discussing what is still a very profitable and viable category. Yes, consumers are still feeling a hangover of sorts from the great recession. Yes, the rise of tablet purchases has grown exponentially. Yes, we are fighting for attention in an increasingly fragmented media landscape. However, this industry is still a multi-BILLION dollar industry. Magazines are exciting, ever changing with new content each and every week and print media is and will remain part of the mix that consumers reach for.
Capture those consumers that continue to enjoy reading magazines (there are more than you may think)
Magazine content is currated and organized to appeal to the specific reader demographic and as such, becomes an intimate, involving experience for the reader. A reader's favourite is like a trusted friend, giving advice, inspiration and entertainment. On average, a reader spends 42 minutes with his or her favourite magazine.
46% of shoppers go to a store they know will have the magazine they want, while 26% will even go to another store if the magazine they want is not available.
Slow shoppers down in your store
Have you ever watched what happens when someone hits the magazine section in your store? Most slow down, as if they are escaping the chore of shopping, even if only for a few minutes. Whether in a grocery store or convenience location, consumers linger over the magazines and visibly relax. They linger… and lingering in your store results in increased sales overall. It is proven that the longer someone is in your store, the more likely they are to buy and buy more.
Tablet users are not abandoning print either. "Tablets encourage consumers to search and read new magazines. 96% of tablet owners have read a printed magazine in the last year, compared to the 80% national average." 1. A recent Canadian study of magazine purchasers showed that 71% prefer print, while 19% had no preference. Click here to go to the website for more Canadian consumer content.
Women continue to be strong supporters of the magazine category. Women list magazines as their #1 affordable, under $10 treat.
Keep magazines attracting attention at the checkout.
Along with gum, candy and beverages, magazines remain a great impulse buy. Magazines are #1 among shoppers. 80% of shoppers chose magazines when asked "what do you like to see at checkout". There is an optimal mix for all checkout product that maximizes retailer profitability and magazines are part of that mix.
Keep your customers up on the latest trends
Magazine buyers rank among retail's best customers. They tend to be more affluent with more discretionary income.
"Influentials" influence the spending behaviors of 91% of the population. Not only are they are early adopters of the latest products and services, but they're also avid publication readers. Publications are the main source for new products & ideas that drive further core product purchases.
Each issue is packed with fresh ideas that entice customers to try new products, boost confidence in making major purchases & inform buying decisions on a personal level. Consumers trust information they gain from magazines above any other media.
Influence beyond the original impulse purchase
Due to the inherent nature of print media, readers actively participate in building memory structures that are the basis for brand recognition & actual consumer behavior. Purchasers often pass publications on to others, extending the sphere of influence beyond the original purchaser as well.
Reach occasional customers & stimulate niche interests
New titles & brands are effective tools to reach emerging segments, growing demographic groups & foster niche interests. Proper merchandising generates additional transactions due to the impulse nature of the product.
The Value of Books
While the rise of e-readers and tablets have led many to cry that print is dead, we see that in most cases, the e-books are becoming just another format which consumers consume. In fact, some e-books have spurned fantastic sales of their print versions as the buzz about the book or series already had reached critical mass prior to the publishing of the print format.
"There is surely a sizable untapped market for print editions because e-books remain only 25 percent of the book market.
If print could talk, it would surely be telling the world, Mark Twain-style, that reports of its demise have been greatly exaggerated. The market for e-books grew exponentially after Amazon introduced the Kindle, and it’s still one of the most fascinating and unpredictable sectors of a once hidebound industry. But the early-adapter boom is showing signs of flagging and the growth of the e-book market appears to be leveling out. E-books are definitely here to stay, but it seems that many, many readers — a threefold majority, in fact — still prefer print."2.
What we do see however, is that in general, competition for our time is taking away from reading and it is affecting how people communicate in later years. Programs like "Read To Lead" work to educate about the positive advantages reading provides when starting from a young age.
Capture your reader in the non-traditional channels
There are multiple reasons to carry books in your retail location one of the greatest is that the mass market, grocery and specialty retailers are the fastest growing segment in the industry today.
Capture and maintain attention
Consumers also slow down in your book section. They linger in your store which translates into in increased sales overall, in general. It is proven that the longer someone is in your store, the more likely they are to buy and buy more.
Beyond this is the magic that happens when a reader discovers a new author, a new topic, even a book for the very first time. That person, introduced to the pleasure of reading, becomes something greater ~ a reader and often there is no going back; devouring a book, an entire a series, all books by a particular author. Books capture imagination and once captured, it is often maintained for life.
Create a positive experience
Books provide consumers escape, knowledge, relaxation, entertainment and inspiration. Reading provides hours of entertainment, an affordable treat. Multiple studies have been conducted, that indicate that books in your store enhance the shopping experience, that experience adds to how consumers view your overall store brand.
Act on an impulse
Books to a certain extent are impulse purchase items - Consumers will see a display, remember a birthday, another event, or just a treat for themselves and will buy them on impulse thereby providing stores revenue they wouldn’t have had previously.
Despite today’s distractions, people are continuing to read and seek out information.
Form consumer habit
Books are also habitual in nature; Harlequin is a fantastic example of this, their loyal readers consistently frequent the rack and purchase from stores that carry them. Author allegiance also creates habitual reaction. Habitual consumers of books, comprising on average of 33-36%, (60% more than habitual magazine market size), of the market are frequent shoppers in your store and frequent the area on average every two weeks, often purchasing something else during that visit as well.
1. Publisher’s Playbook: iPad Publishing Strategies, eMedia Vitals, 2012; "Tablet users—even younger ones—still prefer a print-like experience," Pew Project and The Economist Group, 2012; "Readers Prefer Printlike News reading Experience on Tablets," Mashable, 2012; comScore TabLens, 2012
2. Books aren’t dead yet - Self-publishing fans and the tech-obsessed keep getting it wrong: Big authors want to be in print -- and bookstores
March 20, 2013 By Laura Miller