Magazine article Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management

Premiums with Single Copies: Why Not?

Magazine article Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management

Premiums with Single Copies: Why Not?

Article excerpt

Premiums with single copies: Why not?

Over the past year, major wholesalers and national distributing associations have been intensifying their efforts to increase newsstand sales. National meetings and special executive meetings have been held across the country. Lots of things have been talked about, but little achieved.

This past summer, I began exploring the possibilities of a European idea--selling two magazines bound together at a price higher than an individual title--in discussions with Frank Herrera, president of ICD, and Donald Cron, circulation vice president at Knapp.

Herrera stated that Hearst's English company shrink-wraps combined and new publications for newsstand and supermarket sales. And our foreign licensee for Architectural Digest, Georgio Mondadori of Italy, periodically shrink-wraps the magazine with his Architectural Digest special about historical Italian areas. Mondadori confirmed they have had great success selling the combined publications.

We at Knapp have been working on many sales and marketing strategies covering subscriptions, ad sales, Knapp books and, of course, newsstand sales. The shrink-wrapping program seemed like a quick step in the right direction. Brainstorming about the pluses and minuses of shrink-wrapping magazines together confirmed that the only negative is that the consumer cannot thumb through the issue prior to purchase. To this I responded that the consumer will get a mint-condition copy plus a highly vertical premium that enhances the purchase.

(We have long believed that all premiums must be planned premiums that benefit the parent title and are valuable tools for the consumer. With Bon Appetit, the benefit must also correspond to the time of year when the premium is offered--such as the "Cocktail Parties" booklet for Christmas and "Light Dining" for the summer season.)

Everyone benefits

A close friend and wholesaler, Gordon Harrison from Lancaster, California, agreed that the idea of shrink-wrapping was right and should be beneficial to all--as it would mean more product value for the consumer, nice packaging and promotional possibilities for the retailer, and increased percent sell-through for the wholesaler--in addition to decreased handling, and possibly more money for the publisher. …

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