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It’s a question we field regularly at the MPA, which is hardly surprising given the growing importance of sponsored content (or native advertising, as it is often called) to our members’ revenue stream– and the gnarly issues of reader trust that it raises.

Research results out today show Kiwis think local magazines are particularly important in the post-Covid era – and they are spending more time reading their favourite titles.

Yes, the long, investigative stories will stay. Konstantin Richter and Verena Friederike Hasel say they will make some changes to North & South – but they are committed to good , honest, well-written journalism. They are also committed to finding an office for their new editorial team “because the best conversations don’t happen on Zoom”. The MPA talked to them about their plans.

Compostable magazine wrap got a tentative thumb from readers in the MPA’s recent nationwide survey – but readers are not convinced it’s the perfect answer. Over 1800 readers, recruited through the subscriber base of MPA member magazines, answered the survey, which explored attitudes and habits around recycling and composting.

It had to happen. With all those Bauer creatives suddenly let loose on the market, it’s not surprising we’re seeing a sudden uptick in smart mag-related start ups. The MPA’s Jessica Malcolm talked to three former staffers about their post-Bauer projects: Metro editor Henry Oliver (Essential Services zine); AWW deputy editor Kelly Bertrand (online mag Capsule) and North & South editor Virginia Larson (creative collective Design and Type)

We’ve had no joy from the Govt so far on MPA lobbying for a magazine postal subsidy - and the latest NZ Post price hikes take effect from next month, with most publishers looking at increases of 3 to 6 per cent. The one small piece of good news is that as an MPA member you qualify for free SOA certification and data cleansing, so you can make sure you get the cheapest possible rate. Details on how to access this are below.

The results are in – and the MPA’s test case ad campaign for streaming service NEON proves the exceptional cut-through and engagement magazines can offer advertisers.

Ovato NZ are launching a new division aimed at giving small publishers wrap-around support – and have recruited two high-profile local ad sales personalities to help with the first stage. The new division - Ovato Publishing Solutions - is aimed at small independent publishers that the company is predicting will emerge post-Bauer. On top of print and retail distribution services – which Ovato NZ already delivers - it will offer subs management, marketing, research insights and ad sales representation.

It’s hard to find bright spots to the Covid-19 media story, but global media network FIPP manage to find one or two in a report released last week. It says kids’ magazines and educational material – particularly that targeted at stuck-at-home parents – have hit the spot with readers; and newsy titles have had an uptick as readers seek the latest pandemic information Subscriptions – both print and digital – are up worldwide, they report. Web traffic is also up, although publishers are still struggling with how to monetise online traffic. And – this one won’t surprise you – online events are having a moment, as real-time get togethers are cancelled worldwide.

Some good news at last. At Level 3, all aspects of magazine production are good to go. “Production, contactless delivery and retail distribution of magazines can take place,” the Government says in its guidelines for business under Level 3.