Paul Dovas, CEO, Audited Media Association of Australia, spoke to attendees at FIPP’s Digital Newsstand Forum in Bangkok, Thailand, yesterday (14 May) about the organisation’s attempts to standardise the measurement of magazines.
“There is a need to standardise, to create benchmarks and reference points and data. It’s SO important. It gives us context and helps us to understand how we’re performing against our competitors and own print products,” he said. “Auditing delivers trust and accountability to be able to sell products to your advertisers and creates a confidence that makes your product desirable to advertisers.”
Dovas said it’s impossible to achieve a global standard, and even though the organisation works closely with the IFABC, every magazine media market is so different. He gave an overview of the work being done in Australia to achieve standardisation, which included defining three digital formats of magazines: replica, enhanced (non-replica) and paid website.
“Our aim is to bring the metrics together and report a wider footprint for the publisher, which enhances transparency. We need to preserve integrity and print heritage, but know that marking their digital footprint is important,” he said.
Dovas said that digital replicas of magazines dominated the market when the organisation started its work, but now, they are seeing growth in enhanced editions. He also spoke of introducing a unique download concept, which relies on technology to deliver the tagging of a tablet edition. Each time a digital version is generated into any sort of device, the tool recognises this, tags, and each time the device comes back during that edition, it keeps it unique. “This makes us confident we’re delivering masthead distribution figures,” said Dovas. This method is currently in test mode with a few publishers, he said, with the aim of introducing it to members by July this year.
As for the future, Dovas said the organisation is working on multi-platform reporting, usage metrics and other “footprint elements” for example video. “If you’re trying to standardise,” he advised, “involve as many people as you can and get the buy-in of all interested parties. It’s the only way.”