Editors, top media honchos and marketers got together to deliberate on the magazine industry in India today at the Indian Magazine Summit in the National Capital on July 29. The summit has been organised by the Indian Newspaper Society.
The second half of the day covered a session on ‘Media users perspective on challenges and opportunities’. Moderated by Chintamani Rao, President, Universal McCann, the session had some eminent panelists, including Ambika Srivastava, CEO, Zenith Optimedia; Anita Nayyar, Executive Director, North, Starcom India; Kartik Iyer, President, Initiative; and Shashi Sinha, Executive Director, Lodestar Media.
Rao began by saying that magazines presented the most fragmented media options and raised a very pertinent question to the panelists about the ways that had to be adopted in order to make magazines relevant to the advertiser.
Kartik Iyer, the first one to speak on the issue, laid stress on the consumers, who, he said, were more interested in the content of the magazine rather than on the advertising. On how to tackle such challenges, he said, “We need to create incentives to create advertising in magazines. Innovation is mandatory because the consumer is in the magazine for the content of the magazine, he needs to know that there is advertising as well so it is important for us to get into a realm where you are a part of the content and it is something which needs to be done together by the advertising agencies and the publishers.”
Lodestar Media’s Shashi Sinha put forth a very interesting point by saying that “The noticeability of ads in magazines is far far higher than the noticeability of ads in newspapers.”
Zenith Optimedia Ambika Srivastava laid stress on the challenges faced by the magazine industry in terms of ensuring enough ROI. She highlighted the importance of metrics and went on to say that, “Provide better metrics, which can help evaluate the role of magazines in the communication mix.”
Anita Nayyar took Srivastava’s point forward, saying that revenues posed a big problem for the magazine industry, which had a slow reach and was not responsive. She, however, also highlighted the opportunities for targeting the youth and women.
The evening concluded with a vote of thanks from Ashish Bagga, Chairman, Periodicals and Magazine Committee, INS, and Publishing and Executive Director, India Today Group, who said that, “The objective of the summit was to raise the level of engagement of magazine publishers, magazine space sellers, brand managers with the community.”