Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bloomberg Business Week plunges ahead with alternative delivery

In the wake of our recent post about the need for Canadian magazines to get cracking on alternative delivery comes word that Bloomberg Business Week magazine since December has been working on a strategy to get its magazine delivered by daily newspaper contractors in metropolitan markets. 
Right now, 9% (about 75,000) of the magazine's 860,000 circ is delivered this way, according to a story in Folio: and the company has plans to see 1 out of 3 issues (250,000) delivered this way by year's end. It's not just because of the cost of mailing, apparently, but because of the delivery problems with the USPS.
Right now, the weekly magazine achieves about a 60 percent cumulative delivery rate between Friday and Saturday with the Postal Service. The remainder of subscriber copies arrive sometime between Monday and Wednesday-the latest arriving almost a week after the issue ships.
By partnering with a major newspaper and/or a private carrier, the magazine has a guaranteed Friday delivery by 6 am.
Bloomberg Business Week's director of manufacturing and distribution identified regions where there was a combination of problems with delivery, sufficient entry points and congenial delivery partners. Though he declined to specify costs, he said that overall they were comparable with traditional delivery.
"I don't have a budget to increase my costs, I can tell you that." 
Customers are given the option to stay with postal delivery or take alternative Friday morning delivery and so far only .01% have asked to go back to mail delivery. The magazine is delivered in its own polybag, soft folded and handled separately from the newspaper. 
In Canada, smaller-scale example is set by the Guardian Weekly, which delivers some copies on Thursday mornings, bundled in a plastic bag with the Globe and Mail. (Previous to this , the mailed copy could sometimes arrive as much as five days late (it wasn't unheard of to receive two copies at once).

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