Master Manufacturer: The Modern Printer’s Evolution
Mobile marketing can link publications to publishers' social networks or networks like Facebook and Twitter, and encourage reader engagement with articles or topics in the form of comments, tags and forwarding. Advertisers are now tantalizingly close to the two-way dialog they crave: pulling data from consumers and pushing product information shaped by consumer interests.
Brown also offers digital editions in a partnership with iMirus. Treat says he sees a convergence of mobile technology and digital editions ahead as the iPad and other tablets make the mobile screen a much bigger canvas.
A Move Toward Targeted Marketing
Another new expansion area is e-mail marketing. For example, in 2008, Transcontinental Inc. acquired Thindata 1:1, which specializes in permission-based e-mail and data analytics. Bruce Jensen, Transcontinental's group vice president, says, "We want to be a multichannel company. Print is still the core of many of our customers' businesses, but we're following customer demand for new options."
Transcontinental's focus is on all marketing channels—it also bought a mobile marketing company called LIPSO—but e-mail applications fit well with its customer base, which includes magazine, book and catalog publishers, and retailers.
Retailers have set the pace for multichannel marketing efforts. Jensen and Nicky Milner, Transcontinental's vice president of on-demand solutions, described the efforts a grocery chain might use: loyalty cards to track purchasing behavior, an in-store magazine with coupons, cooking tips and recipes, inserts, e-mail marketing tailored to the recipient's purchase patterns or opt-in choices, direct mail, a website that responds to user interests, and mobile apps.
Magazine publishers can take away from this not only the multichannel sales approach, but the possibility that advertisers will expand their publishing boundaries and eliminate their need for traditional magazines. If readers can't detect the difference between promotion from a retailer and information from a publisher, magazines have even more to worry about.