Battle of the Media: Rounds 3 & 4 Newspapers and Magazines win

The supposedly dying mediums of newspapers and magazines won out against TV and radio in the third and fourth rounds of the Battle of the Media at Mumbrella360.

Mark Hollands, CEO of the Newspaper Works delivered the line of the battle telling an audience of more than 600 marketing professionals: “My wife has been having sex while reading the newspaper for years.”

The comment was made in response to a comment from rival Brendan “Jonesy” Jones of the WSFM breakfast show who said you can’t have sex while reading a newspaper.

Jonesy demonstrated the usefulness of newspapers in an audio presentation showing how people trying to read a newspaper while using power tools at work get injured.  He also extolled the virtues of newspapers by wearing one as a hat.

But Hollands was a clear winner of the debate as the audience and judges were won over by his arguments demonstrating the depth and breadth of newspaper journalism, its ability to set the agenda later discussed by radio announcers, and its engagement with a large readership.

However, the battle between TV and magazines was a closer call.

Judges Simon Rush principal at Razor, Mark Pejic CEO of MediaCom, and Matt Bruhn marketing and innovation director at Diageo Australia, accused Network Ten general manager Russel Howcroft of “missing the point” in his debate.

After Bauer Media Group’s director of sales Tony Kendall showed a slide of a woman reading a magazine while fast-forwarding through a multi-million dollar TV commercial, Howcroft said: “I love magazines, the relationship that you have with them, there’s great engagement. You might even rip the ad out, so it’s no question that magazines are a terrific medium and have been for a number of years. But last year circulation dropped by 13 per cent.”

In contrast, 99.7 per cent of homes have at least one TV set, and 60 per cent have more than two, Howcroft said. And as Australians watch an average of 20.8 hours a week, the sales effect of TV is 2.5 times greater than any other media, he argued.

Howcroft gave an example of an RSPCA TV commercial played at 3am which he said was directly responsible for a rise in donations to the charity.

“Humans are first and foremost emotional,” he said. “And 90 per cent of our buying decisions are based on emotions, and no medium does emotion like TV.”

Megan Reynolds 


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