Home' The Channel Magazine : National Newsagent June 2015 Contents 7
National Newsagent - June 2015
Following the Industry Summit in March projects to
enhance and lift the productivity and profits of the
newsagency channel are underway.
1. Data integration + sharing
ANF recently met with Chris Leach from XchangeIT who
explained the complexity and exciting potential of an
industry-wide data project. The data has the potential to
measure the newsagency channel as a single entity with
data that can be used to benefit the industry nationally.
Chris said it would be a two year job to bring to maximum
fruition. XchangeIT continues to work on this.
2. Training and professional development
The ANF Learning Management System (LMS) is close to
National training manager Rosemary Hume is putting
together content and a modern, accessible design and
online platform will soon be launched. We will be making
time to show the platform with newsagents and partners in
the coming months
3. Co-operative promotions
The ANF has endorsed Rewardle, a Digital Customer
Engagement platform for local SME merchants. It utilises
mobile computing, cloud based software and Big Data
analysis that can enhance customer loyalty and provide
newsagents with business intelligence similar to those
that are used by large retail brands. ANF members will
be able to sign on for free for the first year. The concept
here is to allow partners to work with Rewardle to help
drive customers to the newsagency channel and also
understand who they are.
4. Newsagent ‘portal’
This is still in its embryonic stage and it will need more
discussions between the ANF and VANA to develop this
A meeting was held with the newspaper and magazine
distributors to discuss the issues facing distribution agents.
The overall outcome was that all agreed that we need to
work towards putting more work through this distribution
system to ensure its sustainability. VANA will be taking the
lead on this project working closely with the ANF.
Product (Industry) Life Cycle Stages
Newsagents gear up for change
National Newsagent spoke with Alan Macdonald from Griffith
Newsagency (ACT) about his participation in the MPA trial.
Are magazine sales important to your newsagency?
Extremely important. They are still our second highest form
of income behind newspapers and ahead of cigarettes. We
have a very wide range for the size of our agency and have
a reputation for this in the local area. This attracts customers
What are the issues you currently have with
I spend an enormous amount of time in managing my
supply. Early returning excess stock, adjusting supply
online, processing normal returns, managing stock levels
and interacting with suppliers/distributors emails.
I have a policy that everything makes it to the shelf. As
a result a lot of titles are removed to make way for new
well before the return date. I don’t think the publishers
realise that oversupply is reducing the time their
products are spending ‘on sale’.
The cost of returning magazines, in particular unsold part
works significantly reduces profit from the category.
Why did you agree to be part of the trial?
I have a genuine belief that this 100+ year old issue has
a chance of reform. By collecting data from proactive
agents that have agreed to be part of a trial we will have
real information about what part of the proposed Code of
Conduct works and what parts don’t. I know that there will be
some significant improvements in the current process as all
parties in the process have a commitment to it. I also know
that I won’t get everything I want as there will be a need for
compromise. Some things I find good, other agents won’t or
are unworkable for a variety of reasons. Compromise is the
key. I am looking for an outcome that delivers a better system
than we currently have. It won’t meet every need but I hope it
will meet more needs than I currently have met.
What are you expecting to occur?
I am expecting that what is proposed at the beginning will
change and modify during the trial for a variety of practical
and economic reasons. We need to try to see what theory
will look like in practice. At the end, we will have quality data
and very real experiences to use to formulate a draft Code
of Conduct that can be discussed and modified based on the
experiences of the trial agents. In the long term I am looking
forward to a BETTER system.
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