MARKETING EXCELLENCE AWARDS: The essential medium - decision-makers' usage of B2B magazines

Magazines are an essential tool for advertisers to communicate with their business customers. Research shows that business publications are regularly read by 87% of decision-makers. Used on their own or as part of a wider campaign, they are able to offer advertisers a unique relationship with their readers. In leaner times, they are the medium that can deliver an advertiser's message to a highly targeted audience.

PPA has published a research report, The Vital Investment, which gathers data from various studies to demonstrate how advertising in business magazines works, supporting the findings with research evidence. The report provides vital information to show advertisers how business-to-business (B2B) advertising works across the whole medium.

The report highlights the extent to which advertisers value the medium, not only in their role as marketers, but also as readers. One survey showed that 99% of advertisers use professional trade titles to keep up to date with their industry. On average, they read 4.3 magazines regularly.

From a marketing perspective, evidence shows that 96% of sales and marketing directors consider B2B magazines best for providing effective advertising for their marketing campaigns. Furthermore, 77% of advertisers see B2B magazines as their first port of call when it comes to choosing where to advertise.

One study included in the report shows that 71% of decision-makers believe B2B magazines are essential reading. They commented: "If you miss a month of publications, you have lost track of the industry" and "Sometimes it's the only way you get to know things, as opposed to using web sites or speaking to people."

The Vital Investment highlights the high degree of trust between B2B magazines and their readers. It shows that 81% of UK board directors believe business publications provide the best editorial coverage of their industry, and that 80% of decision-makers think business publications are the most authoritative source of information. It is therefore not surprising to learn that B2B magazines are trusted most when it comes to selecting new suppliers. Fifty-six percent of decision-makers rate business magazines the most useful source "containing advertising that is useful to you".

This is more than six times the score for the next best medium, general business magazines (9%). Additionally, 58% chose B2B magazines as the most useful source for keeping up to date with news of product launches. Web sites, general business magazines and direct mail were ranked in second place, with scores of just 8% each.

- All information supplied here comes from the PPA report The Vital Investment: why it pays to advertise in B2B magazines.

Copies of the report and further details can be obtained from Lucy Fairclough on 020 7400 7544 or or visit


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