For the publishing industry, acquisitions are the name of the direct mail game. While an established publication always is going after new subscribers, it obviously has renewals and lapsed members to put dollars into the coffers. For a new publication, the ability to sign up new subscribers, especially in the first year, determines whether or not it will survive.
With that in mind, the Who’s Mailing What! Archive considers three mailings from magazines—two of which are relatively new—that came into our hands the past couple of months. The mailer from Condé Nast Portfolio arrives in a large #14 envelope that announces, “It’s a business magazine you’ll want to read,” with the word “want” italicized in standout white type. Inside, there’s an insert labeled “receipt,” with the recommendation that prospects save the slip for their expense records, an unusual step for a magazine. The splashy brochure plays up the cool angle for the business periodical, with previews of upcoming covers and issues to be covered. It goes with a golf umbrella premium. The four-page letter, printed on expensive white stock, establishes the Condé Nast cred right off the bat, by asking the question, “What does the publisher of THE NEW YORKER, VANITY FAIR and WIRED have to bring to the world of business magazine?” Later, it claims to read like The New Yorker and look like Vanity Fair, but “it’s all business” (Archive code #205-707471-0701B).
Philadelphia STYLE goes the personalization route, sending a 7-3/4˝ envelope with a neighborhood-specific “preferred resident voucher” inside. An abbreviated letter is perfed to the voucher, and it again mentions the neighborhood in which the receipient lives and that he/she will receive a low subscription price. It makes an offer of a one-year subscription for $12 plus the “Best of Style” guide premium (Archive code #206-709698-0701A). Meanwhile, Men’s Vogue doesn’t divert from a control that debuted in December 2005, except that its most recent mailing now offers a tote bag instead of a shaving kit as its premium (Archive code #204-704997-0612).