Magazines Archives - 2007 March
Selling magazine subscriptions on retail shelves
SINGAPORE-BASED direct marketing solutions company World Marketing Group (WMG) launched Mag-EZ, a new magazine-subscription platform aimed at revolutionising the way publishers sell subscription, across the Asia-Pacific region.
The concept behind the product is its repackaging of magazine subscriptions as retail products. For example, a 12-month subscription can be packaged into a PVC clamshell together with a free gift and sold on retail shelves.
The company first launched the product in Singapore, with plans to roll out to Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand in a years time. WMG is currently working with four retailers Cold Storage, Popular Book Store, Singapore Post, Watsons and selected newsstands in Singapore and is looking to tie up with more retailers.
Mag-EZ is a new revenue and profit stream for retailers, said SK Ng, president and CEO of WMG. It is a big shift of subscription revenue from the traditional subscription channels to the retail channel. It creates opportunities in bundling marketing as well as cobranding marketing of products.
Further, Mag-EZ will assist publishers to reach markets where they do not have a presence. There is no need for databases, no mailing hassles. A publisher can be sure of rapid penetration into emerging markets like Vietnam and China where databases may not be readily available, Ng added. In addition, Mag-EZ may do much to reduce wastage by selling loose copies of a magazine in stores. Nearly 50% of magazines do not get sold at retail stores, said John Seeley, vice-president of international consumer marketing for National Geographic, one of the first publications to sign up with Mag-EZ. This way, you have less wastage, distribution and logistics costs.
Seeley added that the company is targeting sales in the thousands range with Mag-EZ, after selling over 200 pieces in the month after Christmas without publicity.
The only challenge at the moment is changing the mindsets of the retailers and publishers, said Ng, who reckoned they might not be receptive to the idea yet. Nonetheless, he believed that in the future, most publishers will market their magazine this way, and it will one day become a major product category in the retail outlet.