Four A's requests more transparency for digital magazines
By Sean Callahan
New York—The print media committee of the American Association of Advertising Agencies sent a letter to the MPA requesting “rigorous transparency and accountability” for digital extensions of print magazine brands.
In the letter addressed to Chris Kevorkian, chief marketing and digital officer of MPA, the print media committee requested more information related to readership of tablet editions be made available by publishers. For instance, the committee requested that publishers identify “tablet-audience metrics by subscription and single-copy sales.” Additionally, the print media committee said, “It's important that engagement metrics include, at minimum, average time spent with "enhanced' ads such as video, slideshows, etc. In addition, we will need data on actions taken when readers engage with links and hot spots.”
In short, it appears that media buyers want to be able to take more advantage of the interactive capabilities of digital editions and only pay for engagement and actions that can be measured. “We welcome input from the Four A's Print Media Committee and look forward to discussing the points that were raised in the May 1 letter,” an MPA spokesman said.
At the American Business Media Annual Conference, held earlier this week in San Francisco, Peter Westerman, chief audience officer at Summit Business Media (who held a similar position at Ziff Davis Enterprise when it abandoned print for all-digital magazine production), warned that publishers could not count on selling tablet advertising with a print magazine-style rate base. “The notion that advertisers will pay according to a rate base, we [at ZDE] saw very quickly that is never going to happen,” he said.