Easier Ad Workflow
The relationships between magazine publishers and their advertisers aren’t matters of “us” and “them.” On the contrary, these relationships—if they’re strong—are true partnerships.
And it’s the publisher’s duty to not only supply its readers with valuable editorial content, but to also provide first-class customer service to its advertising partners, which means being able to provide pricing quickly, to notify them of opportunities for premium placement and exposure, to develop long-term programs that best suit the advertisers’ needs, and to ensure that their advertising materials are handled with care and reproduced—whether in print or online—with integrity.
Maintaining the Relationship
Customer relationship management (CRM) software is just as important to a publisher’s sales initiatives as to any other type of organization, and there are literally hundreds of CRM tools out there—but few that have been designed specifically for the unique requirements of magazine publishing. While many CRM systems are simply souped-up contact databases, CRM solutions for magazine organizations offer not only that component, but also tools for managing the total advertising workflow—from the time space is scheduled, all the way through to billing.
A solution like Datafest Technologies’ AdSystem, for example, helps schedule insertions, calculate pricing, track ads through production and, ultimately, manage accounts receivable. The Salt Lake City-based developer says that it’s a scalable solution, well-suited to publishing houses that produce only a single title to those with multiple titles and as many as 100 concurrent users. By complementing AdSystem with the AdTrack module, publishers also can use it to track market share and keep close tabs on competitors’ strategies and sales success.
Stamford, Conn.-based The Media Services Group Ltd.’s Élan Ad also monitors the competition, in addition to controlling all of the front-end advertising-related duties—order entry, rate-card and issue management—production workflow, and back-office tasks.
Service With a Smile
In addition to standalone, install-based technologies like these, there are also several hosted CRM and advertising production services available to publishers with more modest resources.