A new Canadian study has shown that ads in magazines have a greater impact per dollar spent than ads in television or online.
The Media Connections Study, commissioned by Magazines Canada and conducted by research firm BrandSpark International, questioned active shoppers in three product categories: auto, food, and beauty. In each category, magazine advertising proved to be a very cost-effective way for marketers to impact purchases.
For each medium, ‘impact’ was based on the stated importance to respondents of the ads in a recent or upcoming purchase decision.
In all three product categories, although much more was spent on television advertising than in magazines, magazines achieved comparable or almost comparable impact to TV. Hence the higher impact per dollar spent.
How this comes about
The way that this vital conclusion comes about was mapped by other stages of the study.
It found that ‘early adopters’ and ‘category influencers’ are reached most effectively by magazines in print and in digital forms, rather than by television, radio, newspapers, or general websites and social media. These category influencers are active, through word of mouth and a variety of channels, in recommending specific brands. In effect they become advocates.
The study found other elements which contribute to advertising in magazine media being so effective: compared with other media, magazine audiences tend to be more engaged, and pay more attention to the advertising – because they find the ads are more relevant and they regard the ads as a good part of the experience.
The survey showed that the impact of magazine advertising (compared with other media) is strong at all stages of the path to purchase – Consideration, Evaluation and Purchase.
Moreover digital magazine ads are found to be more relevant, a better experience, and attract more attention than ads in online video or social media. These desirable characteristics are even stronger among the heavier readers of digital magazines.