US Magazine Publishers Unite

27 September 2004

In what many see as a U-turn, US magazine publishers are to present a united front when pitching their titles to Madison Avenue.

Publishers of previous arch rivals will tell their ad salespeople to stop solely promoting the title for which they are employed and to wax lyrical about the magazine genre as a whole.

Using the holistic approach of other trade groups, such as the 'Got Milk?' campaign by milk processors, the magazine industry hopes to combat the rise in rival media, namely network and cable television and the internet, and secure future advertising revenue.

Previous print buyer and current TargetCast TCM member of staff, Roberta Garfinkle, gushed: "They should have started this a while ago. It's about time they all grew up, and realized that there is a bigger job to do than just talking about their own individual titles."

Nina Link, president/ceo of the industry's trade group The Magazine Publishers of America, said it is set to spend in excess of $40 million (€32m; £22m) over the next three years.

Employing Publicis Groupe's Fallon New York, the multimedia campaign will extol the virtues of the unique 'engagement' the reader has with a magazine -- a single topic or specific attraction, in turn producing a highly identifiable consumer who is attractive to advertisers.

However, such changes in the magazine politics of America will not occur overnight, and some doubt a working alliance will succeed at all. Ron Galotti, former employee of Talk, GQ and Vogue, put it bluntly: "You have a certain amount of time to make your point, get it sold, and get out. A good media person would say just that: 'Start telling me about Vogue or GQ or whatever, or get out of my office'."

Data sourced from: The Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff