Eight consumer magazines, including Cosmopolitan and Seventeen, have adopted the Audit Bureau of Circulations new multimedia publisher’s statements, reports that include Web traffic as well as print circulation.
The optional reports, made available for this first time this month, are based on Web data audited by ABC’s digital audit unit, ABC Interactive, and are available in two formats—one with top-line data such as unique visitors and page impressions and one with detailed, expanded traffic data including unique visitors, average visit duration and most popular Web site sections.
According to ABC’s senior vice president, marketing and sales Mark Wachowicz, this kind of integrated reporting is what publishers, advertisers and ad agencies are saying they want. “It clearly reflects the changing nature of the media industry today,” he stated.
In a 2007 ABC survey of marketers, 84 percent said the verification of online advertising activity by an independent third-party auditing firm would become increasingly important over the next three years.
“ABC’s Multimedia Publisher’s Statement allows us the opportunity to present our advertisers a more expansive picture of our brands,” said Seventeen’s vice president, publisher Jayne Jamison in a statement. Seventeen reported an 11 percent growth in unique visitors on seventeen.com last year.
The other magazines signed on at this point are Air Force Times, Army Times, Chronicle of Higher Education, Marine Corps Times, Navy Times and New York Review of Books. According to a spokesman, ABC expects to see more magazines participating in the June 2008 reporting period but declined to say which titles and how many.
ABC’s much-hyped Rapid Report, a free service that allows publishers to voluntarily report their top-line circulation data on an issue-by-issue basis within weeks of the on-sale date, saw a precipitously slow buy-in from publishers when it launched in 2006 but experienced a surge of interest after Time Inc. joined the program last fall. American Media and Meredith were among the first to participate.