HP Hearst Magazines

Addressing customers by name; US mags try new route to ad revenue

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By Noel Young, Correspondent

March 2, 2012 | 2 min read

There's no better way to win a customer over than by addressing them by name. And taking that to heart, major US magazine Harper's Bazaar, has just dropped into 300,000 homes with a full-page flier, greeting the subscriber by name and urging her to visit specific Neiman Marcus stores within 50 miles.

Personal touch ... note on the Neiman flier

The flier -- called an "outsert" in industry jargon -- follows a similar effort in Popular Mechanics' November issue, reports Ad Ag magazine.

The personalised outsert there promoted HP printers and a 16-page insert directed readers to HP retailers nearby.

Both magazines were taking part in Project Match, a collaboration between their parent Hearst, and HP, which has developed printing technology to enable faster, higher-quality personalised printing.

More publishers are likely to follow, says AdAge. In a test , Time's Targeted Media is putting personalised wraps on 2,000 copies of Fortune that are going to media buyers and marketers.

It hopes to make the capability generally available by mid-July.

Connie Livsey, director of beauty and lifestyle at Harper's Bazaar, said, "A luxury customer wants to be first, wants to be treated in a personal way," she said.

She believes there are many ways marketers might personalise their magazine advertising. For example, "You could do an outsert just for people who are the biggest Estee Lauder customers,"told the mag.

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