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Magazines command undivided reader attention: Tarun Rai

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Magazines command undivided reader attention: Tarun Rai

The Association of Indian Magazines (AIM) in partnership with exchange4media presented the AIM Engagement Survey to industry stakeholders on July 9, 2012 in Mumbai, as a part of the three city tour.

A panel discussion was held primarily for the media and the advertising industry as well as for clients to highlight the importance of investments on advertising in magazines. The topic for the panel discussion was ‘Magazines - The power of Engagement’. Tarun Rai, Chief Executive Officer, Worldwide Media, and President, AIM, presented the brief prior to the panel discussion and gave an insight to the AIM Engagement study, which is a two-phased research commissioned by AIM; a qualitative research by Quantum, followed by the large scale quantitative survey by IMRB, involving 3,600 people across 10 cities.

Giving a brief insight into the engagement study, Rai stated, “Today we have numerous media platforms such as television, radio, out of home, etc. The onset of various media has led to a paradox of choices, which is good since it democratises everything, but at the same time it is also leading to cases of anxiety due to the availability of excess information. This leads to trust issues. Several questions arise about which media platform to trust. This excess information creates issues eventually leading to a distracted consumer.”

According to Rai, it is crucial to minimise the communication noise since consumers are looking for less noise. One needs to connect with the consumer and focus on ‘interaction’ with the consumers rather than ‘reach’. Rai also nurtures the belief that magazines are most engaging of the media platforms, and in today’s world of distracted consumers, magazines can display their strengths.

During the course of the discussion, Rai also pointed out that though they aren’t competing against television, they are aggressive and hence have employed competitive research for the same. Magazines may not have a similar reach as compared to television, but they have high involvement value as compared to the other media platforms.

Commenting on the importance of quantitative analysis, Rai said, “We aren’t shying away from measurement, but actually trying to obtain a representative sample which covers and captures the target readership. Multiplication factor comes from the recall engagement. Since you are giving undivided attention to the magazine, chances are that the communication is better. We should work towards a currency which we can then use with media planners to say that this is what we believe in a quantitative way.”

He concluded by saying that magazines help build brands, they influence buying decisions and it is imperative that brands while looking at magazine as a medium move from quantity to quality, reach to engagement, and from ‘more’ to ‘better’.

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