- Posted by Nigel Edelshain
- On August 5, 2015
- Magazine advertising
In the last six months, more Americans have read a magazine than used the Internet.
The number of consumers who still read print magazines and the influence magazines have on them clearly show that magazine advertising is still worth it—especially in the healthcare arena, where magazines drive more consumer action than the Internet, TV, and radio.
If you want to get the best return on your investment, though, you’ll want to invest in more than one ad. Theories of effective frequency in advertising suggest that consumers have to be exposed to a message anywhere from three to twenty times before it sinks in and they take action, and their attention spans aren’t getting any longer.
The graph below shows data from the MPA on ad frequency and brand metrics, correlating multiple exposures with dramatic increases in brand favorability, purchase intent, print ad awareness, and brand awareness.
One key takeaway from this data is that even if you’ve run a print ad with little success in the past, that doesn’t mean your campaign is ineffective. Even with a beautiful design, superbly crafted copy, and a compelling call to action, a standalone ad is unlikely to see the same response as a repeated one. It follows that getting the budget to run your ads at least three times is imperative if you’re looking for print to drive growth at your system.
Why wait for the next issue?
Another way to experiment with exposure frequency is to run multiple ads in the same issue of a magazine. Nearly one in five ads in one survey were placed by companies running another ad in the same issue. When readers were asked if they remembered seeing those ads, they were 26 percent more likely to respond affirmatively about the repeated advertisers.
The advantage of running multiple ads in the same issue instead of a single ad across multiple issues is that you don’t have to wait months to see results or rely on people remembering previous exposures, whether consciously or subconsciously. 67 percent of readers take note of advertisers with multiple pages, compared to 51 percent who note full page ads and 43 percent or fewer who note half page or smaller ads.
Couple that with the fact that advertising effectiveness—from an increasingly favorable opinion to a prospective patient visiting your website or making an appointment—is virtually constant regardless of position and there’s good reason to test multiple ads throughout a single issue.
Whichever way you choose, it’s always a good idea to test the effectiveness of your advertising strategy. If your budget allows, trying each in turn will give you the most insight into the method that’s best for your system and your community.