IAB Media News

Magazine publishers need to action the innovation they talk about says new report


By Nick Creed | Co-Founder & Digital Director

March 23, 2015 | 4 min read

“Now is the time for action” was the rallying call to publishers from John Wilpers and Juan Señor, editors of the 2015-16 Innovation in Magazine Media World Report launch at the Digital Innovators’ Summit in Berlin.



After the last few years of talking about what publishers need to do to change their businesses the real enemy of innovation is now not a lack of ideas but a crippling top-down, rigid, out-of-date corporate culture. The enemies within are the archaic job descriptions, workflows, organisational structures, equipment and software that combine to thwart innovation and collaboration.

The report is a compendium of facts and figures that help outline proven areas of action publishers can put into place today to innovate and survive.

There was a reminder that publishers should stay focussed on mobile with 40 per cent of the web pages served globally now on mobile. And coupled with the fact that $64bn of revenue was generated on the mobile channel it’s an area that publishers should ignore at their peril.

Programmatic needs to be fully embraced and is now representing 50 per cent of display advertising, and by next year this will rise to 66 per cent with 75 per cent of advertisers now using it. Native advertising is here to stay with nearly 50 per cent of publishers are using it as a revenue channel. However this comes with a health warning that bad native advertising is deadly while great native content can be extremely lucrative.

There was also a warning that ad fraud is an area that is affecting all publishers and is now costing media companies $4.5m every hour. Quoting the IAB, 36 per cent of all traffic is generated by a machine not a human with 25 per cent of all video ads and 10 per cent of display being fraudulent. Publishers were urged to use technology such as third party verification tools to beat advertising fraud.

Video is now the dominant format for both content and advertising today and in the foreseeable future. 79 per cent of global consumer web traffic is projected to be video by 2018 and with video delivering 800 per cent more conversions than text-only pages it is generating over ten times more CPM revenue.

The report also recommends that publishers should make video available outside paywalls to deliver the larger audiences sought by advertisers, even at the risk of losing subscription revenue which should be offset by the higher CPMs.

Another area the report highlighted publishers should focus on is social media which has seen massive growth of referrals pushing search engine referral traffic down almost 30 per cent to 29 per cent.

Enewsletters, events and data are other areas that are talked about as opportunities for publishers to exploit with print even getting six pages to talk about it’s strength in the publishing mix.

The full report is available from www.fipp.com

For more magazine business transformation ideas check out The Drum's Media Slap event www.thedrum.com/mediaslap

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