Tan­gi­ble Looks to Com­mer­cialise En­gaged Com­mu­ni­ties of Su­per Con­sumers World­wide

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BACK­GROUND

If one were to list the great­est chal­lenges fac­ing the pub­lish­ing in­dus­try to­day, re­main­ing rel­e­vant in a world where tech­nol­ogy ad­vance­ments are rapidly re­shap­ing so­ci­eties and economies, would have to be close to the top of that list. Driven mostly by mil­len­ni­als who are ex­pected to con­trol US $2.45 tril­lion of pur­chas­ing power glob­ally this year, the world is mov­ing from a knowl­edge-based econ­omy to a pas­sion-based one. En­gag­ing with these dig­i­tal na­tives has been a chal­lenge for many pub­lish­ers who don’t un­der­stand that qual­ity con­tent is not enough; they need to in­vest in com­mu­ni­ties and com­merce to cap­ti­vate them. New Zealand is a unique coun­try known for in­no­va­tive think­ing and Tan­gi­ble Me­dia rep­re­sents its home­land well. Part of the coun­try’s largest in­de­pen­dent mar­ket­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pany, ICG, Tan­gi­ble “gets” the im­por­tance of en­gag­ing with “peo­ple”, as op­posed with “a peo­ple”. They recog­nise that de­mo­graph­ics don’t de­liver dol­lars; pas­sions are what pro­pel peo­ple to pay for unique con­tent ex­pe­ri­ences. Ver­ti­cally in­te­grated and multi-chan­nel, Tan­gi­ble Me­dia’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties run the gamut of con­tent creation and pub­lish­ing to dig­i­tal me­dia, video pro­duc­tion and ex­pe­ri­en­tial. Their brands in­clude: Dish, Good, Habi­tat, Lit­tle Trea­sures, Liv­ing Well, Toast, NZ Fish­ing World, Idea­log, New Zealand Wed­dings, NZ Mar­ket­ing and NZ Re­tail; re­spec­tive print and dig­i­tal prop­er­ties and nu­mer­ous events. “Com­mer­cial­is­ing en­gaged com­mu­ni­ties” is Tan­gi­ble’s pas­sion, which it ex­em­pli­fies through its re­lent­less com­mit­ment to en­gage­ment, orig­i­nal­ity and rel­e­vance across all the dis­ci­plines re­quired for jour­nal­is­ti­cally-lead con­tent creation.

THE OP­POR­TU­NITY

Ac­cord­ing to con­sumer me­dia pub­lisher and di­rec­tor of con­tent mar­ket­ing, John Baker, Tan­gi­ble hasn’t seen it­self as a mag­a­zine com­pany for quite some time; the com­pany sees it­self as a di­ver­si­fied me­dia busi­ness.

“Pro­duc­ing mag­a­zines is just one of the prod­ucts that we de­liver to cus­tomers,” said Baker. “As a spe­cial­ist me­dia com­pany we need to lever­age the deep re­la­tion­ships we have with our au­di­ences in dif­fer­ent ways and mon­e­tise those re­la­tion­ships. Imag­in­ing and cre­at­ing new ways of do­ing that is our big­gest chal­lenge. Hav­ing said that, I think we’ve been quite suc­cess­ful at it.”

While most me­dia com­pa­nies look to ag­gre­gate au­di­ences based on scale, Tan­gi­ble takes more of a ver­ti­cal view of the mar­ket, fo­cus­ing on build­ing com­mu­ni­ties of in­ter­est based on peo­ple’s pas­sions, not on age, gen­der, oc­cu­pa­tion, ge­og­ra­phy, etc.

This not only dif­fer­en­ti­ates Tan­gi­ble in the mar­ket­place, it gives them more op­por­tu­ni­ties to ex­ploit the value of what The Cam­bridge Group calls the Su­per Con­sumer – pas­sion­ate peo­ple that drive 60% of a brand’s prof­its. Su­per Con­sumers are:

Emo­tion­ally-en­gaged with spe­cific prod­uct cat­e­gories

Open to ex­per­i­men­ta­tion and in­no­va­tion (i.e. early adopters)

Well-in­formed and in­volved Ac­tive on so­cial me­dia In­flu­en­tial trend­set­ters De­vel­op­ing mul­ti­ple touch points with these pow­er­houses through dig­i­tal, so­cial, print and ex­pe­ri­en­tial is where Tan­gi­ble sees the big­gest bang for its buck. And it’s what driv­ing them to look for more ways to max­imise en­gage­ment and prof­its with Su­per Con­sumers wher­ever they are, on what­ever plat­form they choose.

THE PLAN

The first step in con­nect­ing with more Su­per Con­sumers is to achieve global reach with Tan­gi­ble’s dig­i­tal brands. Tan­gi­ble did that by dis­tribut­ing its con­tent on Zinio and part­ner­ing with PressReader to ex­tend its brand reach to 250+ mil­lion peo­ple who en­joy spon­sored ac­cess to all-you-can-read PressReader ti­tles in a grow­ing list of over 6,000 hotels, 16,000 li­braries and with air­lines, air­ports, cruise ships and cafés around the world.

When Tan­gi­ble added its ti­tles to PressReader, the pub­lish­ers’ con­tent reach went from 4.5 mil­lion New Zealan­ders to the four cor­ners of the globe, mak­ing it bor­der­less, search­able, sharable and mon­eti­s­able.

“Although no one has yet been able to fully repli­cate the re­tail foot­print on­line, dig­i­tal mag­a­zine chan­nels do at­tract con­sumers, so we need to be there,” shared Baker. “PressReader is driven and smart about con­nect­ing with con­sumers wher­ever they are, through thou­sands of global busi­nesses and across all plat­forms. In our opin­ion that is a key dif­fer­en­tia­tor to other providers.”

Ac­cord­ing to PressReader’s chief con­tent of­fi­cer, Niko­lay Malyarov, Tan­gi­ble’s fo­cus on read­ers’ pas­sions fits per­fectly with PressReader’s crowd-cu­rated ap­proach to con­tent dis­cov­ery. “To max­imise dis­cov­er­abil­ity and rev­enue po­ten­tial, a pub­lisher’s con­tent must be fric­tion­less; it must also be ev­ery­where its read­ers are, in what­ever for­mat they

choose. At PressReader we fa­cil­i­tate fric­tion­less dis­cov­ery of Tan­gi­ble’s con­tent through an ag­gre­gated dis­tri­bu­tion model with mul­ti­ple pre­sen­ta­tion for­mats or­gan­ised by read­ers’ in­ter­ests and the in­ter­ests of like­minded peo­ple.”

A cou­ple of years ago, Tan­gi­ble part­nered with Oomph when it recog­nised op­por­tu­ni­ties to cap­i­talise on the rise of tablet adop­tion. Ac­cord­ing to Baker, “When we went with Oomph it was based on the be­lief that in­ter­ac­tiv­ity, en­hanced con­tent and cre­at­ing a more web-like ex­pe­ri­ence was go­ing to be some­thing that con­sumers would value. Dish al­ready had an in­ter­na­tional au­di­ence for the phys­i­cal and dig­i­tal con­tent and many read­ers from the US and Aus­tralia were on iOS de­vices. So we were com­fort­able with an iOS-only so­lu­tion from Oomph. Their iPad plat­form was very good, and they gave us the tools to cre­ate in­ter­ac­tive ver­sions of our ti­tles with some spe­cific func­tion­al­ity for Dish fans. We cre­ated what I think was a great prod­uct and had rea­son­able up­take in terms of sales.”

How­ever, the amount of time and in­vest­ment it took Tan­gi­ble to cre­ate each is­sue of the mag­a­zine was much greater than the re­turns they were get­ting from an au­di­ence point of view. The vol­ume they de­liv­ered was good but it wasn’t enough to prop­erly com­mer­cialise it.

In ad­di­tion, the ex­plo­sive growth of tablet adop­tion be­yond Ap­ple in New Zealand had Tan­gi­ble man­age­ment re-eval­u­at­ing its de­ci­sion to go iOS-only; it de­cided to start look­ing for a fully cross-plat­form tech­nol­ogy that:

Was more cost-ef­fec­tive than the iOS-only Oomph so­lu­tion

Cre­ated in­no­va­tive branded apps for all app stores (Ap­ple, Google Play, etc.)

Of­fered com­plete porta­bil­ity and a faster time to mar­ket So, af­ter eval­u­at­ing all the op­tions, Tan­gi­ble Me­dia chose PressReader for its new branded apps, in ad­di­tion to be­ing part of PressReader’s all-ac­cess pub­li­ca­tion plat­form.

“Along with meet­ing the tech­nol­ogy re­quire­ments, a key in­flu­ence in our de­ci­sion to run with the PressReader plat­form was that PressReader man­age­ment came and met with us per­son­ally,” said Baker. “They were in­ter­ested in our busi­ness and came up with so­lu­tions that re­flected what we were look­ing for. We felt like we were deal­ing with the peo­ple who were ac­tu­ally pro­vid­ing the so­lu­tion rather

than third par­ties or in­ter­me­di­aries who re­ally didn’t rep­re­sent the busi­ness di­rectly. PressReader’s per­sonal touch re­ally dif­fer­en­ti­ated it from ev­ery­one else.”

THE RE­SULTS

Look­ing glob­ally at the power of con­tent mar­ket­ing for brands, Tan­gi­ble is ahead of the curve in terms of recog­nis­ing an op­por­tu­nity to po­si­tion it­self strate­gi­cally in a grow­ing mar­ket out­side of tra­di­tional mag­a­zine pub­lish­ing.

And while the rest of the mag­a­zine world chases dig­i­tal ad­ver­tis­ing dimes, Tan­gi­ble con­tin­ues to look for new ways to com­mer­cialise en­gaged com­mu­ni­ties. Five years ago tra­di­tional ad­ver­tis­ing rev­enue would have rep­re­sented 60 to 70 per­cent of Tan­gi­ble’s rev­enue; it now ac­counts for only 30 or 35 per­cent.

“Tan­gi­ble is fo­cused on build­ing and mon­etis­ing one-to-one re­la­tion­ships with con­sumers based around some­thing that they are re­ally pas­sion­ate about,” said Baker. “So we tend to put a large amount of em­pha­sis on our sub­scriber re­la­tion­ships and the data that sur­rounds them. If you can link an ed­i­to­rial propo­si­tion within a prod­uct or mar­ket cat­e­gory where there is com­merce tak­ing place, where there is a def­i­nite re­la­tion­ship be­tween some­thing that peo­ple are pas­sion­ate about and how they spend their money, you’ve got your­self a suc­cess­ful di­ver­si­fied me­dia busi­ness.”

In Septem­ber 2015, Tan­gi­ble Me­dia’s cross­plat­form branded apps built with PressReader Tech­nol­ogy started rolling out with plans al­ready in place to aug­ment them with com­mer­cialise-able re­lated dig­i­tal brand prop­er­ties.

Tan­gi­ble re­tains very strong en­gage­ment with con­sumers through so­cial, dig­i­tal and phys­i­cal prod­ucts, but the com­pany is not stop­ping there. Ex­pect to see more in­no­va­tive prod­ucts in­tro­duced in the near fu­ture.

ALTHOUGH NO ONE HAS YET BEEN ABLE TO FULLY REPLI­CATE THE RE­TAIL FOOT­PRINT ON­LINE, DIG­I­TAL MAG­A­ZINE CHAN­NELS DO AT­TRACT CON­SUMERS, SO WE NEED TO BE THERE.

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