Magazine Advertising: An Effective Medium Better than Web

According to UK media analyst Guy Consterdine, reading a magazine gives your brain quite a workout, and unlike watching TV, which is a largely passive experience, reading a magazine is an active one, requiring a great deal of attention and decision-making.  Magazine advertising’s effectiveness lies in the fact that most readers scan each page, consuming most of the publication – whether they want to or not. Here are four more reasons why magazine advertising is so effective.

1. Instant recall

Even if one’s eye doesn’t deem something interesting, the brain does. The magic of the magazine is that as the brain takes recognition of the advert, the information about a product is effortlessly stored in the reader’s memory, and subconscious.

Man Reading a Magazine

A study done by psychology professor Daniel Schechter (Harvard), found that people tend to prefer products featured in magazine advertisements they barely glanced at several minutes earlier – even when they have no explicit memory of seeing the ad! If this isn’t effective advertising, what is?

2. Multiple recall

Guy Consterdine found that when looking at magazine advertisements, people tend to look at the same ad more than twice. Magazine readers are also in control of the advertisement’s exposure. While watching TV, adverts are allocated a certain timeframe, so once the 30 seconds are up, that’s it. If the audience is unclear about something in the advert, they can’t go back to it. In a magazine, the readers can review the advert at their leisure and even read the small print.

3. More effective than TV – and the Internet

A 2009 study (McPheters Adwords Methodology) took various target groups and allowed them to sit for 30 minutes with one medium in a controlled setting. They could watch TV, surf the net or read a magazine. They were then asked if they could remember four adverts that appeared in each medium. The study found that adverts in magazines had twice the impact than TV ads, and six times the impact of Internet banner ads.

Magazine Advertising as a Medium

4. It’s all about the audience

In advertising, the target audience is everything. This makes magazines particularly attractive for advertisers because not only do ads sneak into the subconscious of readers, but the magazines are designed with a specific target audience in mind.

Access to an online media directory can help advertisers discover the specifics for each audience, such as demographics and LSMs. It’s essential that all adverts are relevant to the target magazine audience, and in this case an online directory can prove to be invaluable. For example, a media directory will show you that most magazines in South Africa have a historical association of advertising aimed exclusively at women, whereas newspapers have always been more male-dominated (AMPS 2011). This kind of information will enable a more targeted marketing campaign.

About the Author: Ang Lloyd writes on behalf of SARAD, an online media directory in South Africa that provides up-to-date information radio, TV and magazine advertising rates.  Please check their website out for more information as thanks for them providing such a fantastic article to use on the Wall Street Subscriptions website.

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