Leveraging New Opportunities for Partnering with Retailers
Changing retail and consumer dynamics pose challenges, but also offer opportunities for the magazine category to employ its unique strengths to partner in new ways with retailers to help them enhance customer loyalty, traffic, cross-category sales and basket sizes. IPDA’s Jerry Lynch and Jay Annis of Taunton Press and PBAA highlighted some of those opportunities during the recent Publishing Business Conference & Expo, summarized in this Publishing Executive article. (Look for more original content on magazine retail initiatives in coming issues of IPDA Daily.) Publishing Executive
AMI Folds Soap Opera Weekly
With only four daytime soap operas still on the air (down from 19 in the 70′s), SOW’s circ had declined by 50% in past four years (to 108K). American Media Inc. continuing to publish Soap Opera Digest (2H 2011 circ 292K, -40% vs. 2H 2010). AMI also folding newsstand teen title Pixie. AMI took over operations of all three titles from Source Interlink Media a year ago, through a licensing deal. Soap opera titles published by other companies have also been impacted, but Bauer reports ABC Soaps in Depth and CBS Soaps in Depth (combined circ of 200K) continue to be profitable due to their high cover prices ($3.99).
Report projects tablet sales to end users to reach 118.9M units in 2012, up 98% vs. 2011. Despite growing competition, expects Apple’s share to decline only slightly, to 61.4% in 2012 vs. 66.6% in 2011. More data highlights included in piece.
New iPad Not Yet Driving Traffic
Early days, but as of day six, new iPad accounted for under 2% of total iPad network traffic, reports Jumptap.
Penguin Names New EIC, AP
Patrick Nolan has been promoted from director of trade paperback sales to editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Penguin Books, responsible for overseeing the editorial direction of the publisher’s list and working closely with marketing. Nolan replaces Stephen Morrison, who recently moved to Picador as its publisher.
More on Supervalu’s Results, Guidance
As part of reporting on Q4/full-year FY 2012 results, Supervalu said that it expects negative same-store sales to continue through the end of its current/2013 fiscal next February. Comps projected to decline 1%-2%. Total sales also projected to decline by about 1%, to between $35B-$35.5B (sell-off of most fuel centers cited). But $1.27-$1.42 per-share guidance exceeded analysts’ expectations ($1.19), sending Supervalu’s stock up despite a Q4 loss of $424M ($2 per share). President/CEO Craig Heckert said guidance is based on the retailer entering FY 2013 as a leaner company with a “hyperlocal” and pricing strategy that will differentiate it and drive traffic, volume. Concept empowers store directors to help define assortments, pricing, promotions, services for their stores. Supervalu’s simultaneous emphasis on lowering prices is exemplified by its new “Fresh Produce, Fresh Prices” initiative (low everyday prices on 200 key items).
“Farm to Club” local produce program to be expanded to all of its 195 stores in the 15 states in which it operates.
Albertsons Cuts Store Waste by 90%
Supervalu-owned banner reports that 30 stores located in the greater Las Vegas area, Henderson, Nev., and Boulder City, Nev., have diverted more than 90% of all store waste from local landfills. Through recycling, organic composting and food donations, the stores combined to keep more than 21 million pounds of waste out of local landfills and donate 3.5 million meals to local food bank and hunger relief efforts in the past year.
Can Retailers Halt ‘Showrooming’?
To address sales being lost to Amazon, other online retailers, Target is pushing suppliers to provide more exclusive products, has quadrupled # of items offered on its own site. Wal-Mart is pushing in-store pickups for online orders to let shoppers avoid shipping costs. Pricing is the key issue: Amazon’s are 9% lower than Walmart.com’s and 14% lower than Target.com’s, when sales taxes for Amazon are excluded, but also 11% lower than W-M.com’s even in states where Amazon collects taxes. W-M and Target product prices 1-2% lower on their sites than in-store, and growing competition from online retailers may cause the retailers to promote, rather than downplay, their online pricing deals. Sending targeted coupons tied to loyalty programs and daily-deal alerts to shoppers’ mobile phones may be most effective strategy; both retailers are employing apps for these purposes.
Retailers Attempting to Stem Higher Theft at Self-Checkouts
Higher theft rates (as well as customer service concerns) was one reason Big Y removed self-checkouts at end of 2011. NRF asset protection advisor Joe LaRocca says tunnel scanners and new, more sensitive self-checkout systems–plus watching for tell-tale behaviors–should help deter theft. But Big Y says it’s seen no change in shoplifting behaviors since removing self-checkouts; consumers intent on theft find other means.
Best Buy CEO Resigns Amid Probe
Brian Dunn resigned amid what Best Buy described as a probe into his “personal conduct,” exacerbating the troubles of the slumping consumer electronics chain. No specifics on the nature of the probe yet available.
Detroit’s Last Black-Owned Grocery Store Worried About Meijer Plan
Owner of Metro Foodland in northwest Detroit says a new Meijer store reportedly to occupy a site nearby could be biggest threat in Metro’s 27-year history. Meijer confirmed “definite” interest in the site, but asked about a timeline, said the project is at this point developer-driven.
Amazon Launches In-App Purchasing for Kindle Fire Apps
Launched yesterday; designed to make it easier for developers to offer digital content and subscriptions inside apps and games offered on the Amazon Appstore for the Fire and other Android devices.