Tele-Direct launches magazine

A publishing company best known for the ubiquity of its most popular product shifts gears next month with a highly targetted seasonal magazine for better off Torontonians.Tele-Direct (Publications), publisher of the Yellow Pages and other directories, plans to distribute 150,000 copies...

A publishing company best known for the ubiquity of its most popular product shifts gears next month with a highly targetted seasonal magazine for better off Torontonians.

Tele-Direct (Publications), publisher of the Yellow Pages and other directories, plans to distribute 150,000 copies of Toronto This Summer to selected households with annual incomes above $50,000.

Fred Hagerman, manager of direct marketing at Tele-Direct, worked on the production of Toronto This Summer, overseeing much of its development from idea to almost-complete product.

Hagerman says the glossy, full-color magazine is a ‘call-to-action’ product aimed at people already involved in seasonal activities of one sort or another, or those who would like to take up others.

The magazine comes out in May and is good until September.

Hagerman says Toronto This Summer is divided in seven sections.

He says the sections are sports and recreation, entertainment, Toronto attractions, lawn and garden, just for kids, around the home and getaways, adding strong, independent editorial was a key consideration for Tele-Direct.

He says among the items in the new book are articles on boating, rock-climbing, noisy barbecues, and much more.

Hagerman estimates the new book will have 120 to 144 pages, with about a 55% to 45% editorial-to-advertising split.

He says Tele-Direct staff and freelancers worked together to produce Toronto This Summer, starting at the end of January when they got the go-ahead for the magazine.

He says Canada Post will deliver the initial 150,000 copies of Toronto This Summer as unaddressed mail, adding the first copies of the magazine will go to single family dwellings only, although, in future, some condominium and apartment developments may be targetted.

So far, Hagerman says advertisers are enthusiastic about the magazine, which has attracted a cross-section of local, regional and national advertising.

He says the new book has been helped by Tele-Direct’s good relations with advertisers, but points out it is not the publisher’s intention to cannibalize the Yellow Pages to attract advertising to Toronto This Summer.

Instead, he says the new magazine will increase Tele-Direct’s percentage of non-traditional advertising.

A full-color, full-page ad in Toronto This Summer is $5,300.

Hagerman agrees Toronto This Summer is something of a departure for a publisher best known for the Yellow Pages and other directories, but says Tele-Direct is following a couple of trends: advertisers’ enthusiasm for more specifically targetted publications and the growth of direct mail.

He says there are also seasonal advertisers with products to sell, but which do not see the necessity of buying space year ’round.

He says one way to gauge the success of Toronto This Summer is through the coupons it will carry at the back of each section.

For example, Hagerman says an in-line skate advertiser could put in a coupon for a free skating lesson, or a free skate rental, then measure the response.

Cynthia Evans, director of communications at Toronto Life magazine, expressed surprise Tele-Direct is publishing Toronto This Summer but, nevertheless, welcomed the new book to the fold.

Toronto Life publishes a summer pullout on the entertainment scene in Toronto.

Evans says Toronto This Summer does cover off some of the topics Toronto Life’s pullout writes about, but suggests the new book sounds a bit like a Where magazine.

Toronto-based Key Publishers produces numerous glossy Where city magazines/guides in Paris, London, New York and elsewhere, as well as publishing the upmarket Toronto Life.

Hagerman says Tele-Direct is already committed to publishing a Toronto This Summer next year.

He says the results of this year’s book will allow the company to fine-tune 1995′s magazine, adding, one of the things under consideration for next year is getting Toronto This Summer out in time for the Toronto Home Show.

The 1994 book will miss this year’s Home Show by a few weeks.

Cathryn Oliver, director of sales for City Parent, formerly Kids Toronto, had not heard of Toronto This Summer.

Oliver says before she could comment in any depth she would have to find out more about the new magazine.

Metroland Publishing, owners of City Parent, also publishes the annual Toronto Family Guide and its suburban editions.

Oliver says the Family Guide targets pretty much the same demographic as Toronto This Summer.

City Parent has a free circulation of 150,000 strong, independent editorial was a key consideration for Tele-Direct.

He says among the items in the new book are articles on boating, rock-climbing, noisy barbecues, and much more.

Hagerman estimates the new book will have 120 to 144 pages, with about a 55% to 45% editorial-to-advertising split.

He says Tele-Direct staff and freelancers worked together to produce Toronto This Summer, starting at the end of January when they got the go-ahead for the magazine.

He says Canada Post will deliver the initial 150,000 copies of Toronto This Summer as unaddressed mail, adding the first copies of the magazine will go to single family dwellings only, although, in future, some condominium and apartment developments may be targetted.

So far, Hagerman says advertisers are enthusiastic about the magazine, which has attracted a cross-section of local, regional and national advertising.

He says the new book has been helped by Tele-Direct’s good relations with advertisers, but points out it is not the publisher’s intention to cannibalize the Yellow Pages to attract advertising to Toronto This Summer.

Instead, he says the new magazine will increase Tele-Direct’s percentage of non-traditional advertising.

A full-color, full-page ad in Toronto This Summer is $5,300.

Hagerman agrees Toronto This Summer is something of a departure for a publisher best known for the Yellow Pages and other directories, but says Tele-Direct is following a couple of trends: advertisers’ enthusiasm for more specifically targetted publications and the growth of direct mail.

He says there are also seasonal advertisers with products to sell, but which do not see the necessity of buying space year ’round.

He says one way to gauge the success of Toronto This Summer is through the coupons it will carry at the back of each section.

For example, Hagerman says an in-line skate advertiser could put in a coupon for a free skating lesson, or a free skate rental, then measure the response.

Cynthia Evans, director of communications at Toronto Life magazine, expressed surprise Tele-Direct is publishing Toronto This Summer but, nevertheless, welcomed the new book to the fold.

Toronto Life publishes a summer pullout on the entertainment scene in Toronto.

Evans says Toronto This Summer does cover off some of the topics Toronto Life’s pullout writes about, but suggests the new book sounds a bit like a Where magazine.

Toronto-based Key Publishers produces numerous glossy Where city magazines/guides in Paris, London, New York and elsewhere, as well as publishing the upmarket Toronto Life.

Hagerman says Tele-Direct is already committed to publishing a Toronto This Summer next year.

He says the results of this year’s book will allow the company to fine-tune 1995′s magazine, adding, one of the things under consideration for next year is getting Toronto This Summer out in time for the Toronto Home Show.

The 1994 book will miss this year’s Home Show by a few weeks.

Cathryn Oliver, director of sales for City Parent, formerly Kids Toronto, had not heard of Toronto This Summer.

Oliver says before she could comment in any depth she would have to find out more about the new magazine.

Metroland Publishing, owners of City Parent, also publishes the annual Toronto Family Guide and its suburban editions.

Oliver says the Family Guide targets pretty much the same demographic as Toronto This Summer.

City Parent has a free circulation of 150,000.