Monday, September 05, 2005

The First Interactive Magazine?

After reading numerous magazines on my trip, I thought “what a waste”.

The waste wasn’t in what was being printed, but the opportunities that are being lost. Each full-page ad has so much creativity, color, style and great intention, but its 15 seconds of fame are lost quickly. Some of these publications are 95% ads which makes it even more wasteful.

Google venturing into print advertising got me pondering.

Here’s what I see as the first effective mobile marketing idea that uses print.

The first form of physical world connecting with the digital world advertising was the “go to our website for more info”. When people turn the page, those eyeballs are gone and your brand is forgotten. How many magazine pages have you ripped out so would remember the name of the site, only to lose interest later.

That connection and interest is gone, but what if you could hold on to it a little longer?

What if there was an immediate way to connect using a print ad? Some creative brands are already starting to interact by using SMS. Send a text to BRAND with subject INFO for more info. This is good, but it will be so much better.

Right now I’m thinking how every page in every printed publication could be a direct connection to the specific site of choice. Would that be better than bidding on specific keywords? Could a magazine increase their ad rates if they offered this?

Here's my idea.

How about the first interactive magazine?

Every ad (and story) could be interactive with a simple physical world identifier.

Let’s call the publication Interactive Monthly.

The front cover states that every story and ad offers a direct link for more info on either the story or the ad.

Take a pic or send a text to get more info on ANY PAGE in the magazine.

Could interactive advertisements in magazines revitalize this industry? Will print be the first media to successfully adopt and adapt to Internet advertising?

What better way than a creative interactive magazine for unheard-of products to get exposure.It's obviously not intended for the Nike's and other easy names to remember, but for products that want combine print w/ Internet advertising. I see Google sticking their toes in print advertising, could Google offer interactive print advertising?

There will be other methods, but I see print as being the easiest to offer a way to combine the two mediums.

Thoughts, comments? Am I way off base?

Would you buy a copy just to see the ads? Imagine buying a magazine FOR the ads?


Anonymous said...

Nothing like getting hit with 'spam' (above) in your blog, PP.

Larry said...

Do you think Neomedia recent LOI to purchase Mobot will make them more attractive to Google to do what your talking about or will they try to pull it off in house?

Scott Shaffer said...

I think Google could dominate the physical world advertising space with an idea like this.

I think Google should buy Yellow pages and then this happens:

Google offers webhosting to EVERY small biz that's in every Yellow Pages. In return Google gets every small biz advertising dollar.

Google then makes Local Search "good". I want to get the same results of a local search as I do when I open my yellow pages.

So many times I get the business listing with a map and phone number. I want to see their site too, but small businesses dont have the time or money to design their own site...

They do now if Google does this.

Mobot has some neat technology and they are making inroads with the right brands. Their management is very "ahead of the curve" and sees where physical world search is going.

I do think someday you will click on ANY image and be connected to a specific site or a community message board for more info.

Monica Nilsson said...

I'm definately on your side! What a dream for an old journalist like me, beeing able to share more info about the subjects you're writing an article on. If the editor cuts in your story, just add a link and no more "killing your darlings".
Since I'm in the mBranding business I have to say: Why not use ShotCodes to make media interactive?
Monica Nilsson

James said...

Some of the most succesful magazines, such as Vogue, are already bought for little else but their ads. Ironically for your post, these advertisers (fashion) tend to lag pretty seriously in their online activity.

Scott Shaffer said...

What if Vogue offered each advertiser the ability to make each ad interactive..would it fly?

Would it keep people on that page a little longer?

Could it replace the "for more info visit our website"?

The advertiser could direct the consumer to the specific site based on their location

Anonymous said...

I think you’re right on PP.

Here’s another twist:

Scott Shaffer said...

Magwerk is nice..but it looks like it's only digital. Take that same Probe magazine on the newstand and give it an Internet presence.

My idea is to take a physical magazine and make it digital.
Every ad and story on every page will have a hyperlink of sort.

The options I see are to text a code, take a pic and send or click on a 2d code for more info, and eventually say a word that will link you to the targeted site.

Merge the physical world with the electronic one.

I do like your concept though. It makes reading those magazines easy on line and offers the advertiser another chance to get his brand exposure.

Anonymous said...

The possibilities are endless PP. I sure enjoy reading your blog.

I also ran into your test mobile blog… looks like you take some very close up cell phone pics of the physical world okay…. Hehe… Bravo!!! Someone you know? ;) All for testing purposes I’m sure… haha

Scott Shaffer said...

As mobile marketing campaigns are introduced I will try to show them thru the lens of a camera phone on

Mobile Moblog

Anonymous said...

It appears that for Google to do this effectively, they will need NEOM technology. Taking pictures of words, barcodes, and now actual images as noted above with the MOBOT aquisition. How can they hope to utilize the paper print for connection without controlling or licensing NEOM intellectual property. I would love to hear your angle on this. Because if there is another answer, that stock would be a great one to own.

James said...

In another post you mention, they use mobiles to do image recognition, so you could point your mobile at a magazine and it would recognize the advert and perhaps SMS you some information?

Scott Shaffer said...

I don't know if ANYONE has the IP that provides a direct connect to the Internet on any image.

I do know who has the IP that provides the basis for wireless users to interact with websites thru SMS though..and no it's not the company you mentioned.

There are OTHER ways to connect to website using a physical world identifier besides a barcode.

Scott Shaffer said...


I know Mobot very well. Their service allows you to take a picture in a magazine or any publication (provided the image is in their database) and when the image is sent to Mobot, they can offer an a website, a coupon, etc via SMS.

Every ad COULD BE interactive if the image is in their database..

They have some other neat technology they are working on that will cut down the steps for this.

I have some of the pics on Mobile Moblog

Larry said...

Do I detect you dont believe Neomedia IP is as strong as was first thought a few months ago?