When audiences shifted from television to smartphones and from newspapers and magazines to social media, the marketing industry was quick to adapt to the changing consumer behavior. Businesses shifted their marketing from print to digital, which proved to be highly effective. According to Deloitte’s global mobile consumer report 2016, 80% of smartphone users check their phones within 30 minutes after waking up. This implies the need of faster marketing strategy to reach the audience before anybody else.
With almost half of world’s population using some or other type of social media, businesses are investing 51% of their budget in digital marketing to reach out to their target audience, which is both rewarding yet challenging owing to massive competition, according to Omni Core Agency (www.omnicoreagency.com). Global digital advertisement revenue is expected to go up by 17% to US$ 333.25 billion (approximately Rs. 23.3 lakh crore), amounting to almost half of global advertisement market.
Ever since the internet came into our lives, facts and figures pointed towards the death of print. Although the volume of print media, especially magazines, may be coming down, it is interesting to note that print is not entirely dying; rather, the number of titles is going up.
Since the life of an average consumer is saturated with digital experience, the tactile experience of a magazine in one’s hand still significant. The glossy pages of a magazine still hold a luxury appeal and remain a credible source of information. While the internet is threatening the survival of print, magazines need to find a way to bridge the gap between print and digital.
When print meets digital
The idea of using QR (quick response) codes in magazine articles and ads seems to be gaining momentum. Since a QR code has to be physically present before a person to be scanned by a smartphone, magazines make an excellent base for QR codes to redirect a customer to videos, engaging content, advertising, discount offers and to boost traffic on a website. They are convenient to use and can attract targeted audiences to an online business via their smartphones. Magazines are able to maintain their position in the digital era by joining hands with technology.
Women’s magazines in particular are using QR codes to engage their audience. Since its inception, Vogue has been a leading adopter of technology. The magazine often uses QR codes to engage readers with its online content. Other magazines popular for using QR codes are Elle, Cosmopolitan and Architectural Digest. Magazines laced with digital elements within the print ads make an interesting experience for users and are more effective than direct digital advertisements.
Niche magazines for targeted marketing
Since digital platforms are bursting at the seams with ads, users have found a way to block unwanted ads. Facebook, for instance, has come up with a way to let users opt for the kind of ads they would like to receive, creating a filter for ads. This makes audience blind to digital marketing and magazines offer an alternate experience. This makes niche magazines, which are already targeted, an even better platform.
As opposed to mass media that have a general or averaged view of the audience, preferring reach to targetting, niche magazines are selectively purchased so the readers already have soft spot for ads in a particular context. In this respect, ads in niche magazines score higher than digital media since the reader is already hooked on the subject. The effect of content and targeted ads in a niche magazine on a reader person is a higher level of response. Knowledge and interest in a subject drives a reader to pick up a niche magazine. Ads about equipment and sportswear naturally work better in a golf magazine than in a news magazine or mainstream media.
Niche magazines allow readers to access information and advertisements that are relevant and refined. Small businesses stand to gain the most, since investing in niche magazines is likely to reach intended customers and yield better results.