November 19, 2013 Last Updated 10:06 am

Paid circulation requirement eliminated for newspaper membership in the AAM

AAM President and Managing Director Mike Lavery to retire in late 2014

Press Release:

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – November 19, 2013 — The Alliance for Audited Media board of directors agreed to eliminate the paid circulation requirement for U.S. and Canadian newspaper membership. The decision follows a newspaper member advisory vote in which a majority supported eliminating the bylaw that required 70 percent of a newspaper’s circulation to be paid.

Any newspaper—whether paid or free, print or digital—now qualifies for membership in AAM.

“This change reflects the evolving nature of the newspaper industry, where content is distributed via an array of paid and free print products, on tablet and smartphone apps, and on continuously updated websites,” explained AAM Board Chairman Sunni Boot of ZenithOptimedia Canada. “Now advertisers will have even more audited data for each distribution channel newspapers use.”

AAM President and Managing Director Mike Lavery announced plans to retire in late 2014. Lavery joined AAM in 1987 and has served as its president since 1995. The board has engaged New York-based Bert Davis Executive Search to begin the recruiting process for a new president.

All Divisions Moving to Report More Frequent Data in AAM’s Media Intelligence Center

The board outlined AAM’s larger strategic direction to build its Media Intelligence Center into a frequently updated cross-media database. All media divisions are working toward reporting data more often than the semiannual statements that have been staples of the organization for years.

As of July 2013, approximately 220 of the largest U.S. magazines are regularly filing issue-by-issue data via Rapid Report. U.S. newspapers are also moving to more frequent print, digital and ZIP code reporting with the fourth quarter of 2013 and transitioning to the Consolidated Media Report in March 2015. Mirroring these trends, business publications are planning to file digital engagement metrics monthly beginning in the first half of 2014.

AAM is exploring ways to automate the process of filing publisher data and designing how this data will be accessed in the Media Intelligence Center for all divisions.

Simplified Magazine Program Launching in January

The board approved a new audit program designed for U.S. magazines with circulations of 100,000 or less. Launching in January, the optional audit service will reduce costs, lessen audit preparation and streamline reporting that continues to meet the needs of advertisers.

New Board Directors, Officers Elected

At the divisional meetings held last week, AAM members re-elected 20 directors to serve new terms on the board. They also elected five new representatives:

  • Tom Cassidy, JCPenney, representing U.S. advertisers
  • Michael R. Gulledge, Lee Enterprises, representing U.S. newspapers
  • Pierre Marcoux, TC Media, representing Canadian magazines
  • Yasmin Namini, New York Times, representing U.S. newspapers
  • Eric Zinczenko, Bonnier Corp., representing U.S. magazines

The board also re-elected Sunni Boot of ZenithOptimedia Canada Inc. as chairman. AAM elected as vice chairmen: Kirk Davis, GateHouse Media Inc.; Rob Fisher, American City Business Journals; Scott Kruse, GroupM; David W. Leckey, American Media Inc.; Christina Meringolo, Merck Consumer Care; and Shelagh Stoneham, Rogers Communications Inc.

AAM Plans Centennial Celebration in 2014

AAM celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2014 and is planning a series of events and special programs for members throughout the year. The AAM board is also leading an initiative to reinforce the importance of AAM advertiser membership — the founders of the organization — to coincide with AAM’s centennial. The project aims to reinforce the demand for third-party audits of all media channels with relevant, timely, useful data, and educate the industry on issues of unaudited media. More information about the program will be released in 2014.

The AAM board of directors meeting was held Nov. 13-15 in Toronto. For a complete summary of board actions, visit AAM’s website.

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