Thursday, July 28, 2005

Integrated advertising -- is THAT what you call it?

Media in Canada, a website run by Strategy magazine, published the following item in recent days:

2 Magazine takes ad integration to new level

by Paula Costello

Due to popular demand, Toronto-based book 2: The Magazine for Couples is expanding its integrated advertising opportunities. The pub, which celebrates its first anniversary with its summer issue due on newsstands this week, has been running advertorial features that it calls "2 Magazine Promotions." Participants' products are used to create an attractive spread into which advertiser logos are also integrated. The feature is promoted in one issue and then executed in the next issue so advertisers get a double hit.

The vehicle, which covers topics like bedroom makeovers, has proven so successful that 2 has expanded its offering by introducing a contest for its anniversary issue. Readers can enter until July 5 at for a chance to win a "Couple Makeover," a package that includes, this time around, clothing from Point Zero and a weekend retreat at The Couples Resort, among other things.

The retreat will occur in mid-July and will provide the setting for an advertorial in the fall issue. For example, 2 is looking for a car sponsor as well as one from the d├ęcor category and personal finance, among others. The car sponsor would give the winning couple a vehicle to test drive for four days and the product would be shot at the resort and shown in the feature. In kind, there will be product integration in the retreat and therefore the fall issue for all the participating advertisers.

2 plans to run one of these advertorials each issue. There is no flat rate for participation; it varies according to what the advertiser provides and whether their participation is bundled with an ad buy.

The magazine targets couples 25-39. It has a total circulation of 100,000 across Canada but 80,000 of those go to couples who are signed with HBC's wedding registry.

Neil Morton, editor-in-chief/associate publisher, says that, as editor, he is vigilant about the separation of church and state. "We need to make sure it's not called editorial but it is a service to the reader to see how the products can blend into their lives," he says. "As editor I make it very clear to distinguish between the two," but he says the features have proven popular with readers as well as advertisers. "Readers have been very receptive and have been reading and entering the contests."

Morton says 2 is doing the integration partly in response to the fact that TV, films, etc. do it. "This is our answer to it," he says. "We wouldn't allow product placement in editorial but this is our way of somewhat appeasing advertisers in that regard."

2 is one of three magazine launches that were assisted a couple of years ago by the Ontario Media Development Corporation's short-lived Volume One program. It got $75,000 in startup money.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home