Magazines offer best engagement: AIM

The Association of Indian Magazines (AIM) presented the results of a survey it conducted recently; in Mumbai. The survey aimed to highlight the power of magazines as an effective medium. The Engagement Survey conducted by AIM, the apex body of leading magazine publishers in India intended to prove the engagement potential of magazines and the interest that consumers have in the medium.
The survey findings were based on two researches done by AIM. The first was a qualitative study by Quantum and the second was a quantitative study with 3,600 people across 10 cities; which was conducted by IMRB. Some of the key aspects that the engagement survey dealt with were the level of interest that magazines invoked in consumers, the credibility that magazines have and the interactivity that they offer.
“Today, we are constantly bombarded by more than 3,000 media messages each day. One of the key findings that the survey revealed was that much of the media messages are noise. For the simple reason that audiences filter these messages,” said Tarun Rai- Chief Executive Officer, Worldwide Media and president, AIM in an introductory session to the event.
Tarun exclaimed, “We believe magazines engage and they engage best. They build brands and engage readers in a way that no other medium can.”
What followed was an interesting panel discussion wherein the panelists spoke about the forte of magazines; namely their power to engage.
The panel discussion comprised of members such as K V Sridhar- National Creative Director, Leo Burnett India; Mrinmoy Mukherjee- Director, Marketing and Business Development, Raymond; Nathalie Gerschtein -General Manager, Garnier India; Shashi Sinha, Chief Executive Officer, Lodestar Universal and Shubhranshu Singh -Director, marketing, India and South Asia, Visa.  Annurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-chief, exchange4media Group performed the role of a moderator. Batra is also on the executive committee of the AIM.
Nathalie Gerschtein inaugurated the discussion by presenting a case study done by L’Oreal wherein it partnered with Femina magazine to celebrate 40 years of “Because you are worth it” slogan of L’Oreal. She explained how the need for a medium to engage better was sought and worked upon.
K.V. Shridhar spoke about the creative engagement that magazines offer. He emphasized how magazine publishers have adapted to the mobile web format. Sridhar said, “Brands need to reinvent themselves. The printed word has its impeccable impact.”
Shashi Sinha spoke about the media multiplicity effect; strongly affirming that magazines need not shy away from numbers.
Mrinmoy Mukherjee said that magazines provide opportunities to connect with a large number of people through a single medium. He said, “Magazines have their own identity. They give creative cut-through to brands which should be recognized. Magazines are all about engagement and engagement plays an important role in any brand’s communication strategy.”
Shubhranshu Singh stressed on the fact that marketers need to adjust to the communication needs of different magazines and promote greater interactivity.
The importance of measurement metrics was also highlighted in the session. Today, the media mechanics have changed, but the measurement metrics have remained the same.  The focus needs to shift from measurement to building better engagements and consequently greater interactivity.
The survey findings demonstrated that magazines definitely have greater engagement potential. Some of the other findings were that 65% of readers devoted undivided attention to magazines. They commited to magazines. This only goes to show the amount of trust and credibility that magazines inspire. Also, 83% of people welcomed advertisements in magazines thus boosting the scope for marketers to advertise in the medium.
Every magazine has a personality of its own and needs to be addressed accordingly. The strengths of the magazine industry need to be played up. Engagement needs to be looked at in a holistic way were some of the important take-aways that the panelists imparted. | By Aditi Popat [aditi(at)]

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