Magazines Take Page Out Of Online's Playbook, Use Cross-Media Studies To Tout Cost Effects

Online media may be generating all the buzz on Madison Avenue these days, but the traditional medium of consumer magazines are both more effective, and more cost efficient in influencing key aspects of consumer behavior, according to a first-of-its-kind analysis being released today by the Magazine Publishers of America. The research, which comes from an analysis conducted by advertising effectiveness researcher Dynamic Logic, ironically takes a page out of online media's playbook, effectively leveraging a concept utilized by the Interactive Advertising Bureau's so-called XMOS (Cross-Media Optimization Studies) that so effectively helped that medium get on base with some big marketers and agencies earlier this decade.

"Overall, magazine advertising drove consumer attitudes and intended behavior more effectively and efficiently than viewing television advertising alone, or, TV in combination with online advertising," reads the new MPA white paper, which is drawn from Dynamic Logic's analysis of how magazines, online and TV media influenced consumer behavior across 39 cross-media case studies.



The studies specifically looked at how each medium influences consumer behavior - either in combined mixes, or incrementally - as they go through five identified stages of the buying process, which is frequently referred to by marketers as the "purchase funnel."

For the first time, Dynamic Logic went beyond analyzing advertising effects for these three media and looked at the cost of generating results for each medium individually as well as in combination with others," the MPA white paper says, noting that the end result can be looked at as the ROI, or return-on-investment, each of the three media contribute to a marketer's bottom line.

The paper asserts that magazines were found to be the most "cost effective" medium throughout the purchase funnel, when analyzed on the basis of the actual cost per person and the number of people impacted for each advertising dollar spent via each medium.

Looking at each of the five criteria individually, magazines were proven most cost effective in delivering three forms of ROI: aided brand awareness, overall brand awareness, and purchase consideration/intent. Magazines ranked second behind a mix combining magazines and online media for a fourth criterion, brand favorability. Magazines, as a stand-alone medium, performed less effectively for the fifth criterion - message association - but were a significant contributor to its effectiveness when combined with online media.

A copy of the new white paper will be posted by the MPA online today.

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