The study revealed that influential Americans - 21 million consumers who are twice as likely to be sought out for their opinions and twice as likely to influence the purchasing decisions of others, according to RoperASW - consider magazines their "medium of choice" for information about products and services.
"This report confirms magazines' importance in the purchase process," said MPA executive vice president and chief marketing officer Ellen Oppenheim in a press release.
The report estimates that influentials made nearly 600 million recommendations during the past year, more than justifying RoperASW's description of them as "market multipliers." Additionally, influentials tend to be ahead of the curve when it comes to trends, according to the report: "When your advertising campaigns target influentials, you are reaching 'the early majority.' Influentials outpace the general public for acceptance to new ideas and technologies, and they are the first group to investigate new ways to purchase products and services."
The study isn't without its blind spots - in keeping with MPA policy, specific magazines titles and categories aren't discussed - but overall it makes a persuasive case that magazines may be underutilized by advertisers seeking to get the maximum bang for their marketing buck.
To wit, the study reports that 65% of influentials consider magazines a primary source of news and information (no comparative figures are listed for other mediums). Seventy-seven percent of influentials read magazines two or three times a week, and 72% of them find magazine advertising "useful and informative."
Similarly, influentials consider magazines the medium that offers "the best ideas" about computers, new meals and dishes, places to visit, planning for retirement, ways to improve one's health and the merits of one car versus another.
Complete results can be viewed here.