The numbers are in and we’re not surprised — but you might be. With the boom in affordable devices and connectivity, web audiences are growing right alongside television audiences who enjoy bigger screens and more programming. The assumption might be that these digital audiences are growing at the expense of magazine audiences; however, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Magazine readership continues to enjoy year-over-year growth, and magazine advertising continues to prove itself more effective at boosting brand awareness and trust, as well as persuading more people to take an interest in and purchase products and services. What’s more, magazine advertising is now one of the best ways to boost the effectiveness of your other efforts. In other words, if you want the best returns on all your advertising investments, then adding magazines to your media mix is a must.
Not convinced? Take a look at these ten print advertising statistics from the 2016-2017 Magazine Media Factbook.
1. Magazine Readers Bring the Conversation Online
In case some people thought that social media was replacing traditional channels, the numbers show it is augmenting it instead. Magazine readers are bringing their conversations online — and more of them are turning up online than ever before. The biggest jump is from Instagram users with an almost 20% increase in magazine media industry likes and follows from the first quarter of 2016 to the second.
2. 95% of People Under 25 Read Magazines
This number holds steady year after year, shattering the stereotype that young people are tossing print aside. The allure of high-quality photos and graphics, still images, complete lack of pop-ups and other interruptions, plus durable messaging that’s available again and again are keeping people of all ages hooked on magazines. The science is in: paper-based reading stimulates emotions, drives sensory involvement, provides more focused attention and is preferred by the majority of people.
3. Print and Digital Magazine Audiences Are Growing
While more and more people join the digital revolution, the assumption might be that online audiences are growing at the expense of magazine readers. The good news is that people are happy to enjoy multiple channels of communication and print audiences are growing year over year. In just the last three years, the total magazine audience has grown by almost 6 million people. Digital edition magazines are also on fire with the total audience growing by more than 6 million people over the last three years.
4. Magazine Advertising Campaigns Are More Successful
When the intent of the advertising is to drive brand awareness, brand favorability and purchase intent, advertising in print is generating bigger increases than online or TV advertising. It’s not surprising that the biggest lift is seen in brand favorability as consumers trust print ads more than any other channel.
5. Magazine Advertising Will Boost All Your Other Efforts
When measuring brand awareness across channels, the biggest lifts were seen when print was added to an online or television campaign. You might think this is due simply to the added exposure, but the numbers show that the most positive variable is a print campaign. Online advertising alone provided an average of 4 percent lift in brand awareness; television alone provided a 5 percent lift. Combining online and TV together only netted a 6 percent lift.
What happens when print is added to the mix? Online plus print brings 10 percent lift; TV plus print brings 13 percent. That’s far better than the 6 percent lift when combining online and TV. However, the best results are with a true cross-channel approach: combining print with online and TV nets a 15 percent increase in brand awareness.
6. Need to Reach an Influential Healthcare Consumer? Choose Print.
In all the major healthcare topics including dieting, prescription medication, healthcare and healthy lifestyle, print magazines are the best choice for reaching people who have great experience in these topics, and people whose advice is trusted by friends and family members when it comes to products and services on these topics. Reaching these influential individuals will provide an exponential return as they dispense advice to their friends, family and coworkers based on the information they are finding in magazines.
7. Magazines Are Driving Website Sales of Prescription Products
If you’re looking to drive web sales, turn to magazines. People who view healthcare advertising in magazines are the most likely to purchase prescription products — and the first place they are turning to is drugstore chain websites. That’s right, more people are turning to websites after viewing a printed ad than those viewing ads online, on TV, on the radio and in newspapers.
8. Magazine Readers Stay Tuned
Television and internet advertising might be great ways to get quick and direct messages to your consumers. However, if you’re looking to deliver in-depth messaging that tells the reader a story or gives them all the information they need to trust a brand or make a sale, then magazines are the right channel. The average amount of time spent with print and digital edition magazine issues is almost one hour per issue. Compare that to the fact that more than half of all web surfers spend less than 15 seconds on a website, and the choice is clear.
9. Magazines Are Inspiring and Motivating
People turn to TV for entertainment and to the web for everything from shopping to homework to self-help. Magazine readers, on the other hand, turn to their favorite publications to be inspired and motivated and to get valuable information from a source they can trust. When it’s time to learn about a new product, more people choose magazines than TV or the web. When people want to connect emotionally or indulge in a relaxing bit of “me time,” they are choosing magazines.
More people reported that magazines give them something to talk about with others, and we already know that a lot of these conversations are happening online via social media. More people also reported that magazines are inspiring more purchases than any other channel.
When you want to reach consumers with emotional content that inspires them to take action — whether that action is a purchase, a conversation, or simply to feel good about what they are reading — then magazines are the best channel for achieving these goals.
10. Magazines Are in for the Long Haul
A total of 65 print magazines have flourished for more than 100 years. More than 185 print magazines have made it past the 50-year mark. Websites and web pages come and go, and only 15 television programs have made it past the 50-year milestone. In other words, the variety of channels available to advertisers ebbs and flows over the years. However, the one constant that today’s audience can count on is magazine advertising.
Magazine Advertising: A Durable Powerhouse
Far from being a fad or a result of current technology that will soon be obsolete, magazine advertising has proven itself a durable powerhouse of the last century. This year’s print advertising statistics tell all. The number of magazine readers is growing, and the influence that magazine advertising has on every other channel — from TV and radio to newspapers and other print outlets — is also growing.
What does this mean for advertisers? Not only should print advertising remain a staple in your media mix, but also that every time you’re considering a single media channel for an ad campaign, reconsider the boost you will get from simply adding a complementary print ad, too.