TODAY’S TRADE PRESS: MPA is dead; Nielsen set for online monopoly; Sponsorship loses out

Australian Financial Review:

Consumer mag trade body Magazine Publishers of Australia has all but collapsed, and one of publishing’s most glamorous nights of the year has been cancelled, reports the AFR. It says that the MPA will no longer run ad campaigns to promote the medium – and it will axe its annual magazine awards. It appears that the MPA will exist in name only, with the five big publishers no longer paying fees.

However, according to Neil Shoebridge, glossy mag publishers shouldn’t be too gloomy. The quarterly circulation declines revealed in last week’s ABC figures were not as bad as some were expecting. He quotes ACP publisher Phil Scott as talking postively about men’s titles Ralph and Zoo which fell by 22% and 8%.

He also reveals that the ABC numbers show that newspapers used an increasing amount of discount copies to maintain their circulation figures.

Data firm Nielsen is set to grab a monopoly position in online measurement as the only firm likely to get accreditation from the Interactive Advertising Bureau, says the paper. Other measurement firms including Roy Morgan refused to allow the IAB’s auditor to review their methodology. The report adds that the IAB has been talking to ousted Blue Freeway founder Richard Webb who now heads his own measurement company, Effective Measure.

Meanwhile, the big online ad firms are forcing pressure to slash their rates, says the AFR.

Sports sponsorship is  an early loser from downturn, says a new report from Sweeney Research. According to the AFR, a third of those companies surveyed had already dropped sponsorships.

The Australian:

The Australian’s Media & Marketing section keeps its focus on how the press covered the bushfires. Simon Canning tells how The Mountain Views Mail is now a paper without a town to write for.

And Amanda Meade tells of the mollycoddling received by most of the big TV anchors at the event. Praising the work of the Sky News  presenters, she adds:

“Others, such as Nine’s glamorous Today co-host Lisa Wilkinson were choppered in from Melbourne each day and then chauffeur-driven from the landing pad to the live spot.”

Meanwhile Mark Day flags up poor news judgement on the part of the Sunday Mail in Adelaide. Their front page: “40 dead – see page 12-13”.

There is a piece of good news for ACP staff currently simmering at being told they have to take a week off at Easter, whether they like it or not. The paper reports that their bosses at PBL media have been given a new set of financial incentives after the company’s financial problems wiped out the last lot.

And smaller ad agencies are going to go under or be forced to merge, says The Oz. Among those its says back that view are Clemenger BBDO’s Robert Morgan, STW’s Mike Connaghan and Y&R Brands’ Nigel Marsh.

The Oz, also covers the Sweeney Sports report, although the number of sponsors who have pulled out of deals seems closer to a quarter, than the third mentioned in the AFR report.

And the paper’s diary credits Sydney’s Inner West Weekly with a genius headline after a Mary Poppins statue was attacked: “Super brolly a statistic, vandals are atrocious.” Not quite as good as the much-recycled British soccer headline on a soccer game won by Inverness Caledonian Thistle: “Super Cally go ballistic; Celtic are atrocious“. But nearly.

The Sydney Morning Herald:

The SMH carries the same line as the Fin from undaunted ACP publisher Phil Scott, who denies having any plans to merge Ralph and FHM. It quotes him as saying: “If they’re both making money why would you do that?”

And the paper’s letters page continues the debate about ads on Underbelly. One reader complains how they recorded the show on Foxtel IQ and fast forwarded through the ads. “Unfortunately, as the program commenced 15 minutes after the scheduled time, the recording finished before the end of the program.” The reader has a solution though: “I will seek out and find the same DVD hawker who regularly visits the bars of Lombok, who last year offered me all the episodes of the first series of Underbelly for $5.”

Daily Telegraph:

The Tele reports that listeners to the cricket on 702 ABC last night were treated to crossed lines and the airing of a prviate conversation between staff which included swearing.


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