LIME’s new magazine debuts…but is it worth it?

LIME has done it again!

Beats me the things that the folks at LIME come up with, but I must say that this one has pushed it further.

In a day and age of cost cutting and efficiency, LIME has published a 60 page glossy magazine, which was distributed free with the Sunday newspaper promoting their brand and products. (It would be interesting to know if this was done for both newspapers and also in other LIME countries). While it doesn’t have the iphone splashed across the front (its on the back though), that may be the biggest news in this magazine. But is it worth it?

While I understand the need for promotion and marketing, I do not readily see how this cost can be justified, for something that occupied about 5 minutes of my attention and makes no direct push at making me take the next step. It was well designed though, and it also seems to have a wealth of information.

Does it really cost that much?

A 60 page glossy magazine distributed to such a large number of persons has signigicant costs, not limited to;

  • Research and selling the idea
  • Design
  • Content generation
  • Proof reading
  • Legal cross checking and possible rights costs (eg. to get Rihanna’s picture)
  • Distribution arrangements
  • Creating a framework for future issues (since this is labeled the Summer Issue)

So, is it worth it?

The magazine, titled LIMEstyle, subtitled – ‘Your Caribbean Connection’ seems to be their foray into fashion and style (which is probably why they chose not to put the iphone on the front cover). The problem is that most people may not readily make that link. But this is a risk, as all business decisions, and LIME has lots of money so what’s the problem? Well the LIME shareholders can decide on that one. If this magazine was published elsewhere in the Caribbean it pushes the numbers even further.

From my research I’ve come to the following (these are all estimates as there are no official numbers);

  • Sunday Gleaner circulation – est 100,000*
  • Cost of a 60 page glossy magazine – US$0.15 per page * 60 pages = $US9 (per magazine). [However i would assume that it would be substantially less since they would be purchasing in bulk]
  • Total cost of magazines – 100,000 x US$9 = US$900,000
  • J$ Cost – @ J$87:US$1 = J$78.3 million

So for J$78.3 million which is only the cost of publishing the magazine, and does not include the cost of having staff to compile the information, contact any necessary persons (e.g. Rihanna’s management), design, proof read etc, is this really worth it? Even if they got the magazines for half that price, is it still worth it? Will they see more than $40 million in new business to compensate?

* [the estimates are far one site estimates 950,000 gleaner circulation]

Update: Cable & Wireless (Jamaica) Ltd Widens Fiscal First-Quarter Net Loss of JMD 1.3B from JMD 595.66mm a Year Ago as Revenue Declined and Expenses Climbed

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