Magazine Scan Response Rates Exceed that for Direct Mail, Study Finds

ARLINGTON, MA—Oct. 5, 2012—New evidence shows that action codes (such as QR codes, Microsoft Tags and digital watermarks) in magazines deliver better response rates than traditional forms of direct marketing, according to a report by Nellymoser Inc., a mobile marketing and technology services company. Based on Companion App campaigns delivered by Nellymoser over the past 12 months, the median response rate using mobile action codes ranged from 4.5 to 5.9 percent. The average, weighted by circulation, was 6.4 percent.

Companion App scan rates are greater than the response rates for other types of printed marketing, as reported by the Direct Marketing Association in the “2012 Response Rate Report.” Direct mail had a 4.4 percent response rate overall and catalogs had a 4.3 percent rate. Email and paid search had response rates of less than 1 percent.

Until now, the major barrier in obtaining hard numbers for the response rates of mobile action codes in magazines was that the applications used to scan codes and the codes themselves were produced by different entities.

The clients in this study used Nellymoser to produce both the Companion App with its universal scanner and the mobile experience that is delivered to the reader. Because Nellymoser manages the app and the scanned experience, it has a unique opportunity to measure campaigns from scan through execution. These two sets of data can now be correlated, providing new insight into the audience’s behavior and the success of campaigns.

The response rates measured across all magazines and adds ranged from 0.7 percent to 26.8 percent. The average, weighted by circulation and removing the high and lowest scores, was 6.4 percent. The app remained open about 10 minutes for each visit. During those 10 minutes, the user viewed nearly 19 mobile pages—an average of about 30 seconds per page. This suggests that users were actively interacting with the magazine while using the app. Visitors on average made return visits 1.4 additional times for additional engagement (an average of 2.4 visits).

  • Candy Smith

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