Print innovates with ad formats; Jacket ads most popular format of 2020

The top five layouts together added more than 70% share of ad volumes during 2020

e4m by Tasmayee Laha Roy
Updated: Feb 4, 2021 9:11 AM

Just last week, The Economic Times’ ‘O’ was the BMW logo and a week before that, Whatsapp took to newspapers with jacket ads across top English dailies. Even amid several quarters of lull, newspapers innovated with advertisement styles and formats, welcoming new advertisers with fresh content on board.  

It turns out, there were many others like Whatsapp that preferred jacket ads to catch the reader’s attention and the trend took off in the last year itself. As per the latest TAM numbers, the jacket-full page was the most preferred ad position in the year gone by.  5100+ brands advertised as Jacket-Full Page in newspapers and magazines. Fiitjee was the top brand using full-page jackets.

“In spite of a slow year, print saw over 70000 exclusive advertisers and one of the categories that went all out on print is Ecom-Education which saw the highest increase in ad space with double-digit growth. Most of the brands in these categories dealt in products that became popular in during the lockdown period. Frontpage jacket screams attention and that is exactly what brands were looking at when they opted for full pager jacket ads,” said a leading media expert.

Affordability is another factor that worked in favour of newspapers when it came to ad format innovations. “The entire media industry was revising rates during the months when business was slowing down and consumer sentiments were slow. Brands took advantage of the situation and invested in formats that are otherwise expensive. There was at least 25%-30% reduction in prices and that gave brands the opportunity to innovate,” said another expert.

Interestingly, during the unlock period, there was more than 4.8 times growth seen in average ad volumes per publication per day. The count of categories grew by 36% while the count of categories and brands saw a fourfold increase.

The advertisers that came on board preferred innovative ad formats to the regular ones. The top five innovative ad layouts together added more than 70% share of Ad Volumes during 2020. These included Figured Outline, Seamless Jacket, Box Car, Masthead Integration and Tabs.

In terms of innovations, data suggests Figured Outline ads topped with 28% share of ad space followed by seamless jacket with 20% share.  In addition to the top 5 Innovations, there were 23 more ad Innovations with a total share of 29%.  

When it came to top five ad positions, jacket-full page ads and the regular full Page ads were the most used category at 27% each followed by half page-horizontal ads, solus ads and strip horizontal ads 23%, 10% and 3% respectively.

In order to boost consumer sentiments and motivate them to buy ads with incentive, offer were a hit in 2020. Sales Promotion advertising covered 34% share of ad space in print during 2020. Among sales promotions, multiple promotions were on top with 51% share of Ad Space followed by Discount Promotions. These two together covered more than 80% share of Ad Volumes during year 2020.

Advertisers were also offered incentives in the form of freebies and packages. “When we couldn’t offer discounts we offered incentives to our advertisers which prompted them to advertise more especially during the festive season. Diwali tops the list. With most newspapers now also having digital offerings it is easier to engage the advertiser on multiple platforms and make it mutually beneficial for both parties,” said the marketing head of a leading Hindi daily.

In terms of categories and brands in the unlock phase where the maximum chunk of advertising for the year happened, cars, two-wheelers, real estate multiple courses and retail outlets-electronics/durable were the top five categories in terms of ad space. The top five advertiser list included SBS Biotech, Maruti Suzuki India, Hero Motocorp, Hindustan Unilever and Bajaj Auto.



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