Magazine Advertising

Magazine Advertising

What is Magazine Advertising?

When it comes to magazine advertising, most people think of the large, glossy, national publications full of big brand advertisers. And it may seem like your own business doesn't belong alongside the "big guys," especially if you don't sell your product outside a one-hundred-mile radius--or even outside of your own state. But that's just not the case.

In fact, it's quite possible the next time you open one of those national magazines to see an ad for a business that's right in your own town that just has that one location. That's because, like a lot of other forms of advertising, many national magazines have local sections aimed at smaller businesses. Of course, these local sections are a bit larger than what you may be used to, covering such areas as the "Northeast" or the "Southwest" parts of the United States. So while you'll be reaching people way outside your neighborhood, you'll also attract local business (and may just wow the locals who see your ad on those pages).

Who should advertise in the local sections of the national magazines? Although it doesn't seem so at first blush, these ads are really good for small, "niche-y" stores that carry very specialized products, like hobby items. People will travel great distances to find a new supplier or expert or specialist for their hobby, and they'll spread the word of your existence to others with similar interests. These ads are also wonderful if you have locations in more than one area of any state or in more than one state. You can probably cover most or even all of them with just one ad if they all fall into one of those wide geographical areas that are sold as "local." Check the first few pages of any magazine to find contact information for the advertising department, where you can ask for a media kit and get information on rates and deadlines. And be sure to ask for a map that shows you what each local territory includes.

Types of Magazine Advertising

Magazine advertising differs in many ways. Aside from the ad size, there are different types, which include display ads, advertorials, classifieds, and special promotions. Special promotions may include products to be featured in an article or a series of articles on a particular subject.

Special Ad Promotions

Special ad promotions is essentially a category with its own subcategories. For example, a special ad containing different online courses may be published alongside an article about learning options abroad. These online educational institutions would be told about the segment from an advertising sales rep and offered ad space in that issue. A multitude of schools with the same target audience could all be showcased, making the rates affordable and allowing each institution the chance to reach a huge consumer audience. Additionally, the author of an article can endorse specific products and the companies would not have to pay for the mention of their products.


Often found at the back of magazines, classified ad space typically involves a few lines of text with contact information and a call to action. A logo or small photograph is included. Classifieds are much less expensive than full or partial page ads; however, readers may not turn to the classified ad section and the business opportunity may be risked.


This type of ad usually requires an entire page in the main part of a magazine. Most advertorials are written in the form of a story with an eye-catching headline. Magazine readers tend to gravitate towards these ads as they can be confused with part of the content. Due to laws in many areas about this confusion, words like “advertisement” should be placed at the top of the ad.

Display Ads

Display ads are the most easily recognizable of all magazine ads. They display products in a clear way along with some text. This type of ad is more expensive than the others, and mainly national brands are found on the pages of the most popular publications.

Advantages of Ads in Magazines

Posting ads in magazines is a major benefit to businesses—the higher quality images can have a bigger impact on potential customers than direct mail or newspaper ads. These full color images provide a clearer picture of the product, giving the public a better idea of your brand. Additionally, since magazines cater to a specific demographic, such as people who belong to a certain age group or industry, businesses and brands are almost guaranteed to reach their target audience. Advertising agencies for magazine ads can help businesses make ongoing communication with their target audiences, allowing you to engage with them early in the buying cycle. Ads in magazines stimulate reader interest, prompting them to take further action such as visiting the company’s web site or calling in for more information.

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