New Roper Report on Custom Media Shows Higher Impact on Purchasing Decisions
New York, NY (April 7, 2009) – Despite an increasingly diverse group of media sources, a new study shows that Americans’ enthusiasm for custom media has increased since 2005. The national poll, conducted by Roper Public Affairs on behalf of the Custom Publishing Council (CPC), showed 93% of respondents were familiar with at least one type of custom publication. More than two-thirds say that companies that provide information about their products in these magazines help them make better purchasing decisions – an increase of six points since Roper last conducted this survey in 2005. Overall, custom media is a preferred source of information with nearly three-quarters of respondents agreeing that getting information about companies from an interesting collection of articles is more appealing than getting information from advertisements.
“With the overwhelmingly positive reaction to print custom media, the growing acceptance of electronic custom media and the explosion of branded social networking sites, Twitter and blogs, consumers are clearly finding the time for custom media products –and they are substantially moving the ROI needle, which is particularly significant,” said Lori Rosen, executive director, CPC. “This new survey reaffirms what we all know: custom media works and that is why our members continue to deliver effective return for their clients, despite challenging economic times.”
Who said print is dead?
While the electronic options have increased, print still appears to have the edge when it comes to branded content. The study indicates that 36% of consumers at least occasionally look at the electronic custom publications they receive. This is significantly less than the 59% of consumers who said, at a minimum, they occasionally pick up and look through print custom publications. This preference is even more pronounced among respondents who receive custom publications related to their work. When asked whether they would prefer to receive publications in print or electronic form, 56% of these respondents said they would rather receive a print version, while 37% said they would rather receive publications electronically
“The survey shows that the explosion of electronic media has certainly not hindered consumers’ enthusiasm for print custom media,” said Rosen. “If anything, the wide variety of branded content now available has heightened public awareness of the inherent value of this marketing tool, regardless of the channel through which it is delivered—even in challenging economic times.”
Among the findings of the CPC/Roper Public Affairs survey:
* Custom publications show increased positive impact on purchasing behavior: 68% of respondents say that the companies that provide information about their products in custom publications help them make better purchase decisions. 66% say they are likely to buy from the same company that provided them with a custom publication, and 63% say they have bought something they saw mentioned or advertised in a custom publication. All of these percentages were up since the last survey was conducted in 2005.
* Custom publications continue to strengthen consumers’ relationship with sponsoring companies: 78% say that custom publications indicate companies are interested in building good relationships with consumers and most feel better about the sponsoring company when they are reading a publication the company has provided.
* Majority believe custom publications are valuable: 70% like custom publications because the publications provide articles and information targeted to the reader’s specific interests.
* Custom publications are preferred source of information about companies: 74% feel that getting information from a company through an interesting collection of articles, rather than an ad, is more appealing.
* Companies that provide custom publications are rated positively and recommended to others: The study indicated that car owners who receive publications from their car companies are more satisfied with their vehicles and more likely to recommend the company to others than are car owners who do not receive publications from their car companies. Similarly, people who receive publications from their local hospitals are more satisfied with these hospitals and more likely to recommend them than are people who do not receive such publications.
* Awareness of custom publications remains strong: Before being presented with examples, 61% said they were aware of seeing or receiving custom publications. When presented with specific examples, 93% said they were familiar with at least one type of custom publication.
* Readership of custom publications is high: 59% say that, at a minimum, they occasionally pick up and look through the custom publications they receive.
* Interesting information remains an important selling point: 78% say that when it comes to custom publications, they don’t mind the fact that sponsors are clearly selling their products and services, as long as the publications are filled with interesting information.
* Electronic custom publications, though lagging print, are seen as valuable: 45% feel that electronic custom publications provide a valuable service, and this number jumps among younger Americans. 57% of those aged 18-34 say electronic custom publications provide a valuable service.
“In just about every section of the report, Americans express extremely positive reactions to custom publications and the companies that provide them,” notes Michael Winkleman, president of the CPC and of Leverage Media, his own custom media company. “The ROI provided by custom media is continuing to increase from an already strong benchmark established with the 2005 survey.”
“Americans’ Relations with Custom Publications and the Companies That Provide Them: 2009 Update” is based on surveys conducted by Roper Public Affairs and Media, a division of GfK – a leading international market research firm. Telephone interviews were conducted with 1000 adult Americans aged 18 and over from February 18, 2009 – March 3, 2009.
The Custom Publishing Council (CPC) is the leading professional organization representing custom publishers in North America and is focused on promoting the growth and vitality of this dynamic marketing discipline. Marketers across the country, the media and other interested constituencies rely on the Custom Publishing Council as the authoritative source of industry news, data and trends, information on the effectiveness of custom publishing, and referrals to the top custom publishers in North America (www.custompublishingcouncil.com).