Giving You What You Want

Roaming the floors of the recent ASIS expo in San Diego and ISC East in New York allowed me to do two of my favorite things: check out the latest technology firsthand and interact face-to-face with other security professionals. For me, nothing beats receiving direct feedback and insight from subscribers. From what I am hearing, and according to a recent study, Security Sales & Integration appears to be hitting home with most of you.

As an industry magazine, we are accustomed to conducting all types of original research – such as the Installation Business Report, Corporate End-User Study, Police Alarm Industry Study, Sales & Marketing Study, Industry Census, Systems Integration Study, etc. – to help assist you, our valued readers, in their electronic security businesses. To make certain we are serving in your best interests, we thought why not commission an extensive independent study that measures how well SSI is meeting your needs and desires? I thought you might be interested in knowing how we fared.

With that in mind, SSI commissioned Stillwater, Minn.-based Readex Research to conduct a readership study. Participants were asked their opinions of the magazine, as well as general information about themselves and their businesses. The survey sample consisted of readers with valid E-mail addresses on file. More than 800 usable responses were received. For you statisticians out there, the study’s margin of error was +/- 3.4 percent at the 95-percent confidence level.

For starters, when asked how many years they have subscribed to the magazine, nearly a third (31 percent) of readers indicated they had been receiving it for 10 years or more. New entrants find the publication just as relevant, as exactly a third (33 percent) have been subscribers for four years or less. The average subscriber tenure is 8.3 years, which is why we try to spice things up with as much variety as possible to keep things fresh.

When asked how many of the past four issues of SSI they had read or looked through, a whopping 64 percent of readers said all four, with another 19 percent saying they had checked out three of the past four. Add that up and it means that more than four of five readers rarely miss an issue.

I had always been aware that SSI issues were kept for future reference and shared with co-workers and associates, as many of you have often told me as much. However, I did not realize that more than two-thirds pass along issues to at least one other person, with the average, including the subscriber, being nearly three readers (2.8) per copy.

What is especially gratifying is not only are so many sets of eyes soaking up our content, but during the past 12 months an amazing 95 percent of readers have taken at least one action as a result of editorial in the magazine. Among that group, three of every 10 purchased a product covered in the magazine. We are honored to be considered such a trusted resource. Meanwhile, 89 percent have taken at least one action after reading an ad in SSI.

Those figures really have impact when you consider that 79 percent of SSI subscribers only occasionally, rarely or never have their “commercial customers” demand a specific manufacturer’s product be installed in a given project. That flies in the face of the recent marketing trend to target end users. As installing security contractors, YOU continue to make those critical buying decisions.

In fact, the study also found readers represent installing companies that spend an average of $67,600 monthly on electronic security equipment. Further, the average annual sales revenue – from commercial (52 percent), residential (32.2 percent) and large industrial (15.8 percent) business – for these companies is $8.02 million.

Frankly, I was blown away to discover the magnitude of SSI’s devoted following. This study acts as an internal report card that indicates we are pointing in the right direction, but we continue to look to you, the reader, for affirmation and guidance.

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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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