IMC 2009: ‘Magazine advertising is not about transferring TV content on magazine’

Traditionally, television forms a major portion of the advertiser’s media plan. So, how do magazines help reach audiences that advertisers look for, and at the same time ensure ROI? What uniqueness do magazines offer that other mediums don’t? The session on ‘Successful case studies of magazine advertising’ sought to answer these questions on Day two of the Indian Magazine Congress 2009.

e4m by Rishi Vora
Updated: Nov 7, 2009 9:26 AM
IMC 2009: ‘Magazine advertising is not about transferring TV content on magazine’

While there are several issues pertaining to the magazine publishing business in India, not many have sought to address what the advertisers thought of magazines as a medium to put money in. Traditionally, television forms a major portion of the advertiser’s media plan. So, how do magazines help reach audiences that advertisers look for, and at the same time ensure ROI? What uniqueness do magazines offer that other mediums don’t?

The second session on Day two of the Indian Magazine Congress (IMC) 2009 – ‘Successful case studies of magazine advertising – marketers’ perspective’ – delved on these issues and more. The two-day IMC 2009 was held in Delhi on November 5-6. Worldwide Media was the presenting sponsor, while Chitralekha and Cannon were the associate sponsors. exchange4media Group (exchange4media.com, impact and Pitch) was the media partner.

The panel was moderated by Maneck Davar, Proprietot, Spenta Multimedia. The speakers included Narayanan Rajaram, Vice-President, Lakme and Haircare, Hindustan Unilever; and Suparna Mitra, Head - Global Marketing, Titan. Both the marketers presented innovative case studies of magazine advertising that ensured greater ROI and better effectiveness.

Speaking at the Congress, Rajaram informed that Unilever as a practice allocated about 5 per cent to magazine advertising. “Magazines form a small segment of an advertiser’s media budget,” he admitted, while highlighting issues such as reach and audit data that magazines in India faced. Speaking on the positive side of magazines, he said, “Magazines are informative. They involve the readers with detailed analysis, are more credible, informative and have an imagery-identity benefit.”

So, can magazines provide ROI for FMCG brands? Rajaram replied, “Higher income households are booming. We will see a huge amount of increase in the size of the market. Engagement mechanisms in new categories will change, and, therefore, I am bullish on what will happen in the magazine space.”

“Readers have a certain degree of the association with magazines brands – the challenge is to transfer those associations with the brands. Plan your campaign in advance and be proactive in what you do with the magazines,” he advised.

Rajaram also explained the importance of looking at allied media such as events to maximise consumer engagement and their brand experience. “Magazine advertising is not about transferring television content on magazine. One should use magazines via innovations through an idea, and integrating the same with content,” he asserted. Concluding his address, Rajaram said that in order to attract more advertisements from the FMCG sectors, publishers might want to look at the quality of paper as a serious option.

Suparna Mitra highlighted the various innovations done by Titan and Tanishq, which banked on brand experience and interactivity through the medium.

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