Auditing is a must for consumer and business magazines that depend on advertising and newsstand sales, but if your magazine is controlled circulation or directed at a small, well-defined group, do you really need to pay for an audit?
“Yes, an audit is necessary regardless of whether or not your circulation is controlled,” says Sue Scott of James G. Elliott, Inc. “With the increased competition for audience and ROI accountability, agency media buyers are more focused on having a trusted, impartial third-party independent verify what they are paying for.”
The big two circulation audit agencies are ABC (Audit Bureau of Circulations) and BPA (Business of Performing Audits International). BPA Worldwide is similar to ABC, however it tends to focus on trade publications, rather than consumer titles. BPA Worldwide audits the circulation of primarily business-to-business publications. It also provides audit services for consumer magazines, newspapers, Web sites, events, email newsletters, digital magazines and other advertiser-supported media produced by its members.