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  • Magazine advertising?

    I've been approached by a nation-wide magazine, to advertise in their latest issue at a 'massive' discounted rate, and I'm just wondering if this is worth it or not? Have any of you tried magazine advertising and found it to be successful? At the discounted price half a page is about £300, 1/4 page £200.

  • #2
    Is it worth it? Only if the advert can bring in more additional profit to you than the cost of the advert. In my main business I have tried many forms of advertising over the years, not all successful, and in today's market I am very cynical of most special offers from newspapers and periodicals that I have never advertised with.

    The rate card price is the amount charged by advertising agancies to their large clients and includes their commission (usually about 25% or more) from the publication. Any direct sale to a business without an advertising agency will be with the same amount of discount. Then as copy deadline approaches then further discounts are applied to fill the space. Their interest is to sell the space to anyone willing to spend some money.

    As a general rule for local newspapers I expect a 50% to 60% discount off rate card. Some glossy local free periodicals are only about 15% off rate card. What matters is what it costs, not the amount of discount. You also have to consider the circulation and how closely that follows your target market.

    Lets look at the magazine in question. How well do you know it and do you buy it regularly? Consider the most recent issue, how many adverts did you respond to or made you purchase their product elsewhere since you saw it? The chances are both zero. Of the quoted circulation, what percentage will react to your advert? If the circulation is 10,000 and you get a 3% response then you will get 300 contacts, of which say only 15% actually buy - 45 complete a purchase (or 0.45% of circulation). If the percentages are lower then then numbers will drop. That is the maths you should consider, would 45 customers pay for the advert and leave you a profit sufficient for all the extra work. Generally 10% to 20% of your total product cost should be advertising - this covers craft fairs, online presence, directories, adverts, signs, etc.

    Only you can decide whether you wish to spend hundreds of pounds on an advert that may or may not give you a financial return. My own personal advice would be to spend the money somewhere else in your business where you can see a guaranteed return.

    Last edited by Removed content; 07-09-2012, 10:43 AM. Reason: Fingers not working in the right order


    • #3
      There is one magazine group I can think of which is good at finding small businesses and flattering them with an invitation to advertise. I fell for it (once!) it was a complete waste of money.
      Spend the money on your website


      • #4
        Thank you both for the advice! The discount was 50% off their usual price, but I've decided to not do it, as I just don't believe I could return enough money from it, to be worthwhile. It's always slightly daunting saying no to an opportunity as you think 'What if I've missed out on something great?' but you're both right - the money would be better spent on something I'm confident will help my business


        • #5
          Only pay it if you can afford to lose it. If you follow that rule you cannot go far wrong. Personally I would not bother with the biggies, have also Ben approached by them over the years, they are in it for one things and that is to sell the space. Now if it was an editorial would be different. Look at it another way to justify the cost, work out how much you would have to sell to break even, if materials cost £150,to make it simple you would have to sell £450.00 to break even


          • #6
            Magazine advertising is a total waste of money for small businesses - and they offer the 'discounted' rates because they're never going to sell any space at the premium price.

            It's editorial space you need, and you're never going to get that from a telesales person!

            There are much better ways of spending your marketing budget.


            • #7
              You would have to spend considerably more on advertising to get into the editorial in any of the magazines in the group of which I am thinking.


              • #8
                Laying out hard-earned cash for advertising isn't possible with most small businesses.

                Have you thought of this?
                My daughter and I wrote a tutorial especially for a magazine (no cost to the mag) and in return the magazine advertised our ebook.
                When the magazine had been and gone on the newsagents shelf, we then published the free tutorial on our blog.

                Everyone's a winner!
                Annie and Lyn


                • #9
                  Agree with the posts above. I've recently been approached with a similar offer.

                  Used to do marketing for a day job and would only do magazine advertising if the publication was read by my target market and then we would plan a series of ads - most of us don't respond the first time we see an ad. Magazine adverts really only work as part of a co-ordinated campaign with lots of other things happening so people see the name/product enough to prompt a response.

                  A single ad in a single magazine is unlikely to pay for itself if you're looking for sales.



                  • #10
                    My rule is never ever pay for advertising anywhere.

                    But do pump the advertising team for a list of future " special features" Then use that to approach the editorial team to be included in the editorial if you are absolutely right for the subject.

                    I have had lots of free editorial very little of it bought direct sales but when people found me somewhere they all remember reading about me and that made them more inclined to buy.
                    Helping UK craftspeople make a living relaxing reads, quizzes, mentoring, profiles


                    • #11
                      Completely agree with everyone, I did this once and never again would I spend this money that I could spend elsewhere i.e events/materials. I recently got approached again by another mag, told them I could not afford it and that they had the cheek to ask small businesses for that amount of money. They then asked if I'd be interested in a future feature which I of course said yes. This feature is currently going to print and will be in the Oct edition!!! Hopefully a large bit but either way it doesn't matter as I haven't lost anything!x
                      Dee x
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