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Publisher Viewpoint: Cross Media Breaks the Mould

30 Jun 2009

Publishers are teaming up with other business partners to make the offering more affordable for small to medium sized clients; however publishers remain resolute and committed to the power of magazines, especially their ability to build brands.



This week we showcase Peter Zavecz, Commercial Director of Pacific Magazines who responds to questions posed by our sister publication Media Trends + Strategy


How important are cross-media deals to clients? Are they becoming the rule rather than the exception?


Not many clients buy one medium - and if they did, we'd like it if they bought magazines - so they usually have a bit of a media mix to address their target audience. What we are looking at is not only our suite of assets - television, magazines, mobile and internet - but also partnering with other companies that add extra reach and complement our assets. This could include, for example, Westfield complexes where we can do in-store sampling or our digital media partners at Prime, where we can use their wellbeing network of chemists and pharmacies, or digital screens in Boost Juice stores and so on. We want to look at our total share of a client's dollar. Buyers in this climate are briefing out 100 per cent deals more frequently than they have in the past because the belief is that in a soft market with the competition for the short term dollars, they will be able to get a better deal and price if they give all their business to one company.



What sort of initiatives are you undertaking to market your magazines to advertisers?


In the current economic climate there is a lot more emphasis on adding value for advertisers. On a portfolio basis to our large customers, we are working very closely with the Seven Media Group for some cross-media platform opportunities that are reactive but also pro-active, with the emphasis now being on pro-activity on our part to isolate particular areas of growth across the group and look at the holistic approach across the group.



Pacific Magazines are part of the Seven Media Group who recently launched Focus - how has that been received by advertisers, and what are you offering them?


It launched in June with six categories and there has been really good take up. Our offering is unique in that it is consistent across our group and is essentially talent, production and consistency across all media. It is an endorsement format where a client who needs particular sales spikes, or need the benefits explained from an autonomous credible point of view, will happen. It's targeted at clients and categories where we believe we can grow our share.
Essentially we have focussed on an area where we thought we could add more competition, and provide a better, more integrated opportunity for clients.



How has the economic downturn affected your selling proposition to both agencies and brand managers?


Two things happened for magazines. In January the Nielsen ad spend data was incorrectly reported in a major metropolitan newspaper as showing magazines 25 per cent down versus the January prior. It was proven to be incorrect by Nielsen and was later retracted. So instead of the ad market being down 25 per cent, it was really down eight to ten per cent. The second thing that happened was ACP embarked on a very aggressive price promotion to SMEs called Printworks, so buyers used both of those things to try to get our prices down.


The difference is essentially, that the market is very short term and price focused, and we are very much offering value, stability and CPMs together with extra value and cut through. With our large clients we are dealing very specifically with what they want to achieve and how they can do that not only with magazines but in other areas. With our smaller clients it's very much how we can still be a solutions seller for them and provide them with opportunities going forward.



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