Project 7: Paperight in Live Magazine: closing report

Paperight placed a full-page advert in Live magazine, including a cartoon (as advertorial) developed by the Live team. The issue included mentions of books available on Paperight, pointing readers to Paperight outlets.

The deal also included advertising/content on Live’s mobi website. This was done later as a call for entries to the Paperight Young Writers’ Anthology.

General report-back

Collaboration and execution went smoothly. The full-page ad featured a story-like cartoon, developed by the Live team, of a boy who goes out to buy paperight exam packs at the last minute to study with. Under the cartoon were small ads for two books: Let’s Talk About Varsity and Project H (a graphic novel).

However, we did not notice any discernable impact on Paperight sales as a result of the advert. We suspect this was largely because Paperight’s messaging simply wasn’t effective enough. The advert wasn’t clear enough about what was being offered and how, and we had not made it easy enough to find an outlet for those who did figure out what the ad was offering. It’s also possible the tone and approach of the advert simply wasn’t interesting enough to readers — especially being a studying-related message in the middle of a magazine consumed largely for leisure. In addition, we may simply not have advertised the right products.

We do count it at a very important learning experience. it is possible we will advertise in magazines, and potentially Live mag, again in future. But our messaging will be much clearer.

Objectives achieved/not achieved

Live Magazine wanted to:

  • generate revenue for the magazine
  • give the young production team experience of working to a commercial brief.

Objectives not achieved

Paperight aimed to drive young people to Paperight outlets to get books and documents like exam packs and increase general awareness of the Paperight model and brand. We were not able to find or show evidence that this occurred as a direct result of the advertising.

Measures of success

Measures:

Measure Report
Benchmark copy shop/outlet activity in the areas where Live is distributed before the August issue is distributed, and track the increase in traffic from August to October 2012. No discernable increase in sales from August to October. Number of completed sales over the 12-week period per week: 39, 40, 19, 20, 14, 40, 18, 13, 6, 6, 30, 29, 32.
We’ll filter by demand for the specific books advertised and reviewed in the magazine. We made consistent sales of matric exam packs over the period, but no discernable increase. We did not sell any copies of Let’s Talk About Varsity and Project H.

 

Expect:

  • Any clearly noticeable increase in the rate of outlet sign-ups in the areas where Live is actively distributed (e.g. from 1 per week to 10 per week): not achieved
  • Any clearly noticeable increase in the rate of document purchases (documents advertised in Live tracked separately to others) in the areas where Live is actively distributed: we were not able to distinguish distribution sites and nearby outlets, but did not notice any discernable increase in purchases across our outlets
  • A piece of advertorial produced that feels like a suitable and engaging piece of content for the magazine: We believe the ad fulfilled these objectives.

 

Like:

 

Paperight: A five-fold increase in the above rates: not achieved

 

Live:

 

  • reader responses and positive feedback: We are not aware of reader responses to the ad.
  • Paperight satisfied that the piece was well executed: At the time we were happy, though with hindsight having learned a lot since, we’d do it differently now, with a much clearer, starker message, and clearer, join-the-dots instructions on finding an outlet, possibly addresses of one good outlet in each urban centre.

Love:

 

Paperight: A twenty-fold increase in the above rates: Not acheived.

 

Live:

 

  • Paperight as a repeat customer: Paperight would love to work with Live again, but more likely on a content-based project (mag or video) than an advert.

 

Budget

Original budget: R37500

Actual spend: R37500

Returned to pool: R0

Item Budget Actual Return to pool Comments
Advertising and mobile pages 37500 37500 0
TOTAL 37500 37500 0

 

Outputs and deliverables

Full page advert in Live designed and published.

Learnings

As described above, we believe the content of the advert was not clear and stark enough: we’ve learned through this and other experiences that the Paperight model must be explained in starker terms, with a direct connection to a specific product and specific outlets, and preferably a clear price for the product.

Exit/Sustainability/Viability

This was a once-off project/experiment.

Conclusion

We probably rushed this project, but also were still on a steep learning curve on how to get the Paperight message across clearly. We may try magazine advertising again, but will more likely work on content/advertorial, or advertise in conjunction with a specific outlet chain (e.g. Jetline or PostNet) so that we can point customers to specific places and price points.

Next steps

At Paperight we’re constantly refining our marketing methods and plans, and this learning has contributed a lot to that. We are also talking to Live magazine about collaborating in other ways in future, e.g. in producing video.

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