In these unprecedented times in media, I feel incredibly energised to work for a multi-platform media business with magazine media and radio at our core. I’m confident that the advertising solutions we sell to our customers are high-value adding, cost-effective and can deliver on any media challenge.

That is because I believe everything in advertising begins with trust and our suite of influential magazine and radio brands aren’t going to break any promises – they can be trusted.

Trust is about building meaningful connections and established media brands (in magazines and radio, in particular) are built on connections between content creators & consumers; brands & advertisers and consumers & their communities - no personal interaction can thrive without trust. Our recent insight into Trust in the Accelerated Age revealed that 6 out of 10 people don’t know who to trust these days. This erosion of trust means that consumers are increasingly looking for brands to communicate with them in a relevant, personal way and taking an ethical stance that reflect their values. Thankfully, this heralds a move away from wasteful mass blasting and towards sharper targeting with a growing responsibility to develop trust on platforms committed to creating a positive impact on society. Establishing this deeper sense of trust, in turn, sustains attention.

In recent years, we’ve seen a marked interest in moving spend towards mass digital advertising which has created a bias towards short-term advertising and neglect for the importance of brand- building. The great news for us is that now marketers are starting to pay closer attention to the platforms they advertise on and are recognizing that short-term ROI can potentially damage a brand’s position in the longer term – a risky move in our turbulent times when trust is imperative to command attention.

Gaining consumer trust in this fast moving and complex media storm we live in will be of the utmost importance for brands in 2019. 86 per cent of consumers state that authenticity is an important factor when deciding which brands to support, according to Stackla. So when it comes to building brands, gaining attention is vital and at Bauer, we are uniquely placed with our trusted brands to cut through in this new attention economy.

Evidence shows that established media are much more effective at delivering when it comes to trust & brand-building. Our insight reveals that 87% of consumers place trust in radio and 77 per cent in magazines, outstripping their digital counterparts1. With research also suggesting these audiences are paying acute attention to these mediums.

Magazine media is one of the most immersive mediums, where in a world of multi-screening and multi-tasking, it provides an oasis for engagement as only 5 per cent conduct other activities while consuming a magazine2. Reading is the best way to relax and even six minutes can be enough to reduce stress levels by more than two thirds according to a study by the University of Sussex.3

Better yet, Ebiquity research shows that both radio and magazines confidently generate a healthy ROI on campaigns4 – proving themselves as an attention-grabbing cost-effective medium with radio set to retain audience’s attention with 47 million people in the UK expected to tune in at least weekly in 2019 according to Deloitte.5

It’s important, however, to consider factors that can impact on consumers’ levels of attention so we can make our mediums work harder for us.

Firstly, it is about context and content: in the developing advertising landscape, it’s critical that advertising messages are delivered in the context of quality content - whether that is beautifully crafted and relevant journalism or culturally specific entertainment. Not only is advertising more likely to be noticed if it is relevant to its environment, there is a transfer of trust from quality context to the advertising within it. This level of trust is clear between Grazia and its audience of socially- engaged professional women who allowed the brand to be their mouthpiece to change the law tackling the gender pay gap through the Mind the Pay Gap campaign.

Secondly, it is about connection and creation: consumers engage deeply with media that shares their interests & passions – whether that’s music, puzzles, film, fashion, cars or fishing. When consumers are connecting with content they really care about they are in a particular mode of attention: passionate exploration. This happens in familiar, high-trust environments which make them more open and attentive to new information, including brand messages. Empire have established a deep personal connection with their audience with 53 per cent of total circulation are made up of loyal subscribers who come back time and again. As one subscriber summed it up this intimate connection: “Empire’s the only magazine that has stayed with me throughout my life, from university days through to my late forties.”

Thirdly, it is about the cost of the media: there is a clear distinction between how consumers interact with media that they pay for and free media. If you pay for your media you are actively invested in it and so will be looking for ways to ensure you extract value from your interaction with it – therefore will pay more attention to it and the advertising within it compared to a fleeting relationship with an advert that has been served to you passively. MOJO’s audience are willing to pay: the highest-selling issue of 2018 was the review of the year issue which, at a higher price point, included two gifts (an exclusive Elvis DVD & an all-star best of 2018 CD) and with sales 15.5 per cent higher than the yearly average – this audience have shown they are prepared to invest in the content they love.

When it comes to magazine media, all of these boxes are ticked – context, content, connection, curation & cost. Hence why magazines win on attention and, more importantly, is cost-effective and drives results. That’s why the time is right for us to launch the Magnetic campaign to “Pay less for more attention” – rightfully shining a spotlight on magazine’s key strengths that have been undervalued by media agencies and clients for too long.

Why would you not want to pay less for more attention?

I feel so lucky to be working for a business where our magazine media and radio brands together are perfectly placed to build relevant, personal relationships with consumers and create communities providing a place of security, which is important now more than ever. Because when people feel safe, respected and connected, it generates incredible levels of trust and, ultimately, people pay more attention to the brands they trust.

  • 1 Trust in the Age of Acceleration, Bauer Insiders, July 2018
  • 2 Magnetic, Rules of Attraction, October 2015
  • 3 University of Sussex, 2009
  • 4 Ebiquity, Re-evaluating the Media Mix, March 2018
  • 5 Deloitte Technology, Media and Telecommunications Practice, January 2019