Australia’s most powerful advertising buyers, GroupM chairman John Steedman, is actively encouraging his clients to take a fresh look at newspapers and magazines, arguing print remains a strong avenue for advertising.
Steedman says advertisers have been moving away from print faster than readership, and while circulation figures are falling the negativity around print has been overcooked.
Print, he says, remains a targeted, high impact medium – especially for brands in the financial services and retail spaces.
Steedman blames the ‘digital hype’, as well as a lack of unity among publishers in backing the power of their medium.
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Last year the industry launched its Emma metric, a readership survey that tracks eyeballs across print and digital content to create a more enticing proposition for buyers; though this is still being stacked up against Roy Morgan’s more established research reports.
Some agencies use Emma in tandem with Roy Morgan; Steedman says GroupM will consider both sets of figures for now, and make a call towards the end of the year.
The multinational umbrella agency is the parent company for MediaCom, Mindshare, Maxus and MEC, with billings running into billions of dollars a year.
The Newspaper Works chief executive Mark Hollands says Steedman’s call is supported by a mix of fresh data, advertiser feedback and positive sentiment from media agencies is pointing to a rebound in print advertising.
He points to a new study by global research firm GfK, which found print advertising still has the best return on investment of all traditional media and online banner ads.
The GfK research, conducted late last year in The Netherlands, shows that print not only outperforms in terms of driving sales but delivers better ROI for campaigns when compared with TV.
On average, Gross Rating Point costs for newsprint are twice as expensive as TV, and eight times as much as radio. The impact, however, is so big that newspapers deliver far better ROI, even if the calculations are based on gross prices.
GfK’s panel services measured ten campaigns for coffee, a lottery, an internet provider, diary brand, travel agency and companies H&M, IKEA and Vodafone.
The study was based on a German multinational survey that found of 1000 Australian consumers, 26 per cent said print ads were the ‘most attention grabbing’ compared with TV (22 per cent), radio (16 per cent), outdoor (14 per cent) and online banners (8 per cent).
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