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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Top 100 B2B Magazines 

BtoB has published its list of the Top 100 Trade Magazines for 2005, ranked by revenues (even though the chart indicates it's ranked by ad pages).

I worry a bit about this list, which seems to take total ad pages and multiplies them by something like the 6x rate.

I know several of the magazines on the list fairly well, and their revenues are highly overstated--in one case, by about 150%; in another, by about 50%.

Using a rate card rate doesn't account for the effect of publications like weeklies, which tend to have far higher average frequencies among advertisers, and it also doesn't account for the impact of off-rate card activity, special projects, and so on. But it does make certain magazines look far more prosperous than they really are, even though in reality, they're doing pretty darn well.

I'm not sure this sends the right message to our advertisers. If you were a successful ad salesperson, would you drive up to a client appointment in a Ferrari (even if you borrowed it)? You might not want to be seen in an old clunker, either, but you'd want to take care to show that your clients aren't investing more in you than you are in them.

I feel bad for some of the magazines on this list. Will their advertisers think that they're too prosperous, and not re-investing enough of their mythical wealth in the product?

Don't get me wrong. I love lists. They're fun to read and it's great to be ranked among other top players. And I think BtoB's Special Report on the Power of Print is nicely done.

See Matthew Schwartz's lead article.

And his list of Five Notable Launches.


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