NatMags set to centralise media

The National Magazine Company - which until now has been reluctant to spend heavily on advertising its brands - is to appoint a single agency to plan and buy media for all its titles.

The National Magazine Company - which until now has been reluctant

to spend heavily on advertising its brands - is to appoint a single

agency to plan and buy media for all its titles.



The publisher is expected to spend pounds 4 million next year on

above-the-line advertising for its brands.



Until now it has used agencies on a project-by-project basis but over

the past few weeks it has held talks with a handful of media shops about

the benefits of centralising its entire portfolio into a single

supplier.



Most of NatMags’ advertising activity has been to push Zest, the health

and beauty spin-off from Cosmopolitan. This was handled by Manning

Gottlieb Media. There was also a regional campaign for Company, planned

and bought by New PHD.



The rest of its marketing activities have centred on covermounts,

advertising in same-stable titles, and brand extensions such exhibitions

linked to magazines.



The switch in strategy is being steered by Sue Coffin, NatMags’

marketing strategy director. She would not comment on the plans beyond

confirming centralisation was planned and saying a decision would be

taken before the end of the year.



The centralisation will embrace all NatMag magazines as well as its

events and brand extensions.



The selection process will almost certainly result in one agency being

chosen before the year is out.



The decision to centralise the planning and buying has been driven by

fierce competition in the magazine market and the dramatic increase in

online activity, which provides a new challenge to traditional

media.



Although media planning and buying in recent years have been conducted

on a magazine and project basis, it will not be the first time that

NatMags has pooled the resource. CIA Medianetwork used to hold a

centralised NatMags account.



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