New Media Tools for Gauging Magazine Online Readership

Tools for Gauging Magazine Online Readership Print publications face a significant question about their readership. As newsstand and subscription numbers drop, some of those eyeballs are transferred to online versions. But exactly how many? And are those readers as attentive to ads as offline viewers. To help answer these questions, during Advertising Week’s annunal conference late last month, new media tools were launched for gauging magazine online readership.

Driven by the Association for Magazine Media (AMM), the industry’s leading consumer trade group, a new audience-measurement tool was launched to track consumption of magazine content across a number of categories. The tool seeks to measure both offline and online readership, and in an industry first, attempts to aggregate the two. This month the group launched a social media add-on for tracking its readership.

Mary Berner, CEO of AMM said “It redefines the state of magazine media because you can’t sell what you can’t measure.” And so far this year, measurements are up. The total US audience for magazine content, print or digital, increased to nearly 1.5B readers in August 2014 compared to August 2013. This is up about 10%. The data shows an increase in web usage of over 50% YoY.

This data comes from four different research groups, and then aggregated by AMM. That makes it likely that some readers are counted multiple times – say as they move from computer to tablet to print. The AMM is working to ensure a higher quality readership number.

Growth in digital readers was especially strong with Time, which saw its web usage increase by more than a third, with Entertainment Weekly and People up over 40% and 10% respectively.

The work by the AMM is meant to improve ad sales, especially digitally, where the debate about measurement and effectiveness continues. This tool, rather than attempt to provide an absolute readership number, is more likely to enable marketers to determine trends across platforms and formats, then place advertising buys accordingly.

As we have previously reported, a similar exercise is underway with television ratings. We applaud all efforts for improvement.


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Comments

  1. Thanks for the great article, I was hunting for details similar to this, going to look into the other posts.

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