Aug 4 2012

Track and Boost the circulation of Print media publications with the power of analytics. Know how?!

It is as vital as the circulatory system in a human body for its successful functioning, the circulation department and its functions are of paramount importance for the success of any print media publications. It holds the sole responsibility for your publications availability in the market through which loyal readership is attained. It is one of the prime factors to set the advertising rate which is the lifeline for any publication.

Our data scientists performed exhaustive research and due diligence on the various studies and related works to develop finesse in the print media industry on the challenges in newspaper circulation they might face and want to overcome in the digital age. On contrary India emerging as the leader in terms of newspaper circulation as published by World Association Newspapers by 2011 gives a fodder for thought to look into the other contributing factors of increasing literacy, urbanization and the fall of  circulation due to online media content in developed countries .

Indian newspaper industry is not too far to follow the path as their international counterparts to embrace the technological advancements to be competent enough in the macroeconomic situations across the globe. In order to standardize the transformation or to stabilize in the existing market the industry needs insights because the newspaper is considered the most perishable commodity perishable in a few hours.(thanks to information from FM/Radio, TV, Internet, Mobile phone, etc, etc.)

In order to gain a fair large share of the readership despite your appropriate content, vast coverage, detailed approach, appealing look and feel and cost there are factors like quick distribution, right time reach that are very crucial. This is attributed directly to the circulation department. Besides the key people should know the real time scenario on what happens where, when it comes to circulation. So they can make the right decision either to embrace technological advancements or to implement systems for sustained growth of the organization and to stay ahead of the competition. This equally is attributed to the circulation department’s responsibility.

There would be a well defined administrative hierarchy to do the submission of market reports or an external tool used to view information as dashboards to the management. To create or achieve this efficiency you need data; to collect, collate, analyze and develop actionable insights. The circulation department would also face bottlenecks to obtain the factual figures to adjudge the performance of the newspaper in terms of circulation by collating the data from the managers and distributors pertaining to a specific Region, Zone, City, Area to the very root of newspaper stands, roadside teashops selling newspapers or to even a 12 year old who puts newspaper on doorsteps in our daily life scenario.

Only when the data becomes available there would be a processing to make it a meaningful report. If we further analyse a step below the top line circulation managers and their directly reporting subunits it is nearly impossible to quantify the actual circulation in real time.

Although the data becomes available at every single unit the efficiency truly lies in recording it so it is retrievable at any given point of time. Organizations would spend in state-of-the art technology, systems in order to achieve this efficiency but might not be able to scale up to the peak of collecting every single important data available due to system limitations.

If made available the super sauvy system it occurs in organizations where the system is not put to use to its fullest capability. Or to do so would see organizations to additionally invest on tech-specific workforce. Data Latency is an added woe which occurs due to the physical distance between the report generators and the last point of contact for significant data so it becomes more or less unavailable. The process of analyzing the data and defining a statistical approach again demands workforce with niche capability; the capability to transform mere data into data driven insights, which of course is not the core focus of the circulation department. Here the line of Total Cost of Ownership and Return on Investments on the tech-sauvy systems becomes blurred from the management perspective.

In most of these critical situations an external agency with advanced analytical competence would come to help in handy. There are ways to streamline the internal systems by arriving at well defined KPIs, stretching the data capture through various modes ensuring no critical data is missed at any unit of circulation. The stress is so much on this data because it is the one which helps organisations to make the paradigm shift and take right business decisions.

To know about more on advanced analytics and competitive intelligence and how you can achieve performance excellence through them please write to the author


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