Circulators have to do a lot these days in order to reach their target number. As the cost of lists and direct mail continue to increase, every effort made by the circulator counts. Experts from the Circulation Management show in Chicago in June weigh in on the best practices circulators can use to succeed with their marketing ventures.
1. The best way to find good prospective marketing partners is a brainstorming session among several different departments—i.e. editorial, ad sales/publisher and circulation. Each leg of the three-legged stool has a different perspective to bring to the partnership discussion in relation to the resources they have to offer and what they would like to get out of the partnership.
2. For publishers using agent sources, try Googling your magazine title. You may be amazed at the number of potentially unauthorized entities that are selling subscriptions to your titles at prices that fluctuate wildly. Be sure that the agent(s) you are working with are reputable and conform to BPA and ABC standards.
3. Multichannel ad programs are growing. Build on what works before you need it. Build sister programs to programs that are already working. Strive to replace the bottom 10 percent of your file every year.
4. Look at the economics of the newsstand with the analytical eye of a circulator. Use the available data to analyze the profitability of the newsstand channel and where you will get the best sell-through percentages.
5. Play it cool if something goes wrong during auditing. Get the documents showing the program’s approval, figure out the problem, and determine how much it will impact your circulation. Be sure to involve your management.
6. Try viral marketing. Even if you don’t reach the right target person within a company at first, they will most likely pass along the information to the correct person.
7. When considering partnership marketing remember that the bigger the company you partner with, the bigger the potential problem in trying to insert copy and process into the checkout path. Do a mockup to show your potential partner what the online process will look like.