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Posted by Sonne Taylor on

One Trick For Evaluating Readership Numbers

When I first realized that advertising would become a focus of my career, I was in part drawn in by the relatively numeric world of digital advertising. I liked that it was easy to base all of your work on an actual number of users, and it seemed reassuring to be able to know what was happening with the content that you produced.

Over the years as my scope of practice has grown, I’ve had to learn the nuances of the way this same information is communicated differently in different mediums.

A few years ago, I was learning how to buy print. It was then that I first encountered the idea of a readership number. It was explained to me that a magazine publisher knew (roughly) how many issues it produced and how many were distributed. With a bit of work the team publishing a magazine could also know what percentage of run went to homes and what percentage went to places like waiting rooms where it was likely to be seen by multiple people.

A readership number then, was an estimate of how many people actually read the content in any given issue.

While this definition might encourage the comfort of feeling as though there were some sort of consistency into the assumed number of readers per issue, I’ve yet to get the same multiple from any one publisher. Some hold to the average of 4, others report the subscriber number and others come up with justifications I’ve heard for as high as 12x.

Trouble is there are just some situations where you don’t have a choice.
If a strategy demands a certain publication, you need it — no two ways about it.

One trick I’ve found incredibly helpful in these situations is to compare the readership and subscribership numbers. Once you’ve figured out how much the figure is inflated, you can check another source to reference the audience size.

While you can’t always find an exact match, I’ve found that comparing the number of people interested in “bicycles” on Facebook to the number of people a magazine claims as readers (and then both numbers to the total (avg cost/total sales size) number of bicycle sales) can often prove a beneficial exercise.

While it won’t tell you exactly how many people you’re about to reach it should get you a little bit closer to reality than the more optimistic sales figure often is.

One Trick For Evaluating Readership Numbers was originally published in Fits About Prints.

Posted by Sonne Taylor on

Why You Should Pay Attention To Disney’s Take On This Generation’s iMessage Sticker

Early reactions to iMessage stickers weren’t great, but folks like Yono were quick to check it out. I’ll admit I’ve found myself unable to resist the temptation, and have also rolled my sleeves up to get into the fray.

It’s one of those things you get or you don’t — but when it comes to actually assembling the assets for an iMessage sticker pack? You could have gotten incredibly simply.

There’s a fairly well defined style guide, and the truth is most teams will have many of the necessary assets hanging out in a folder on the shared drive. It’s quite possible you could be looking at as little as an afternoon of work to launch your first sticker pack.

…or would have been.

In recent months a proliferation of image-only stickers has meant that the market has matured a little. If you’re paying attention to the top sticker packs you’ll notice that many include some degree of animation. Others rely on familiar characters.

But familiar characters aren’t enough. One of the earliest players to the space was the Disney company. Disney has a rich library of assets to work with and one has to look no farther than LINE to be given a rich opportunity to study best practices and learn lessons from earlier attempts with stickers.

Disney’s first collections of apps were simple. They included favorite characters with blurbs and static poses. They were generally priced at 1.99 (as are the majority of the apps on the platform.)

Reviews suffered.

Now this isn’t generally true, but I noticed this a few months ago with some curiosity and didn’t give it much thought.

That is until I took the opportunity to pick up one of the recently updated sticker packs I had had on my App Store wishlist.

That’s right: I bought Lion King stickers.

And while you can’t quite tell here, each one has its own animation.

It really is a great set.

So great, I turned around and grabbed one more.

Same thing.

Great pictures, great animations.

As I scrolled, I contemplated looking for a third pack, and wondered what other assets the team had converted into iMessage sticker form.

And then I saw that like all great Disney products, this one ended with a trip to the gift shop.

I can’t tell you from a distance if stickers are the right fit for your project. They might make sense if you have a particularly rich visual library or if you have something to say that can best be expressed with small shareable graphics.

It might sound as though they might not do much of anything for your business, and the truth is it will be a challenge to measure the impact they have. That being said, directed nostalgia like that can be a powerful thing to share with your customers.

While you can’t always influence the way your customers engage with your message emerging communications technologies like iMessage stickers can help to close the gap.

I can tell you anecdotally that I’ve spent more time with these stickers than I have with any of these underlying assets in years.

While that may not always translate directly into added sales, it has a real and perceptible value. Learning to measure and optimize for it is the trick to finding the best way to exploit a new opportunity like Disney has with these stickers.

Why You Should Pay Attention To Disney’s Take On This Generation’s iMessage Sticker was originally published in Marketing Experimentation.