Products & Services


The Need

The advent of tablet apps has given publishers a second opportunity to monetize content.  As the number of apps and their use by consumers increase at a rapid rate, publishers and advertisers need to stay on top of rapidly occurring developments in this area, but the time and effort required to track the requisite number of apps is substantial.

The Solution

iMonitor™ is an extensive database, coupled with a series of bi-monthly reports, which has been created to allow publishers and advertisers to share the cost of this effort while staying continually abreast of developments in terms of:

  • Best practices
  • Evolving business models
  • New apps
  • Best apps
  • Standout ads
  • Innovative Features

The database updates and reports are issued every couple of weeks and reside behind a password protected wall.  Subscribers receive email alerts when updates and reports are posted.

What Is Measured

iMonitor™ tracks U.S. and International publications distributed through dedicated tablet apps on more than 100 discrete variables.  We are currently tracking more than 3500 apps from over 60 countries, with more being added each week.  In addition to publications being distributed in app form, we also track “companion” apps for publications (examples would be EW’s Must List or The New York Times Crosswords), as well as other news-related apps that compete with magazines and newspapers..

Publication Data

  • Publication Title
  • Media Type
  • Print/Digital Magazine, Newspaper, Other News Source
  • Country
  • MRI Measured?
  • Publisher
  • Developer (where identified)
  • Genre
  • Auditor
  • Publication Frequency
  • Single-Issue and Annual Subscription Pricing
    • Print, iPad, iPhone, Kindle, Nook, Blackberry, Coverleaf, Kobo, Nook, Pixelmags, Zinio, Windows Phones, and others.
    • Date Added to Database

App Data

  • Name & URL
  • App Price
  • Platform (iPad Only or iPhone+iPad)
  • Comparison to iPhone App
    • Same as iPad, Companion to publication, etc.
    • App Store Category
  • Date Updated
  • # and Average of User Ratings
  • Average Daily Download Rankings
    • Overall and by Category
    • Paid, Free, Highest Grossing
    • App Description

App Ratings

  • Design Rating
    • 5-point scale based on navigation and enhancements to print experience
  • Functionality Rating
    • 5-point scale based on download speed, navigation guide, glitches, etc.
  • Media Rating
    • 5-point scale based on web links, video, interactivity, etc.
  • App Rating
    • 15-point scale, sum of Design/Functionality/Media Ratings
  • Ad Rating
    • 5-point scale, based on presence of enhanced and dynamic advertising

App Evaluation

  • Issue Purchase
    • In-App, App Store, Web-Based
    • # of Available Issues
    • Registration Required?
    • Download Speed (5-point scale)
  • Advertising
    • Print-like, Linked to web, Enhanced with multimedia or interactivity, Premium/Sponsored ad model, etc.
    • Replica of Print Version?
  • App Navigation
    • Navigation guide, Issue library, etc.
    • Issue Navigation
    • Page-by-page, Scrolling thumbnails, Linked contents, etc.
    • Section Navigation (News apps only)
    • Article Navigation
    • Zoom to read, Scroll through text, Dynamic sidebars, etc.
    • Portrait/Landscape Differences (In layout or content, if any)
  • Rich Media
    • Videos, Slideshows, Web links, Interactivity, etc.
    • Social media versatility and implementation
  • Transactional capabilities
  • Glitches
  • Unique Features
  • Other Notes


iValuate™ is a service designed to help identify quality control issues prior to launching individual tablet apps or issues. iValuate™ tests every page and every link, providing publishers with detailed listings of the things in need of fixing. With prior scheduling, 24 hour turnaround is available.

AudienceLab® Study of Magazine & Newspaper Purchase

AudienceLab® Study of Magazine & Newspaper Purchase, which will be undertaken in January 2011, will explore how publications are purchased and consumed across all platforms and will take an in-depth look at relationships between newsstand sales, traditional subscriptions, and digital purchase. In addition to providing purchase information previously unavailable, it will allow us to establish a baseline against which to measure future changes.

AdWorks™ Advertising Effectiveness Measurement

Since its inception, McPheters & Company has been heavily involved in advertising effectiveness measurement. Our founder pioneered work in this area beginning with the Family Circle Study of Print Advertising Effectiveness in the 1990s. Our unique AdWorks™ methodology provides comparable measurement of ad effectiveness across a wide and expanding range of media and is equally well-suited to establishing best practices in regard to Internet ad placement.

Audience Management & Measurement

Few variables affect the economics of a medium to the same extent as the size and quality of its measured audience. McPheters & Company has unparalleled expertise working with media companies to develop and implement strategies for improving the size and quality of the audiences they deliver to advertisers. Even in a down market, a firm handle on audience development directly translates into increased advertising revenue, as enhancements to audience improve an organization’s ability to compete more effectively for shrinking ad dollars.

We also work with media properties and industry associations to better document the quality of the audiences they deliver. This involves working on their behalf with syndicated services, as well as designing custom solutions to help demonstrate unique strengths.

Circulation: Planning & Documentation of Quality

As many publishers contemplate circulation decreases, McPheters & Company offers a variety of services to help clients improve and document their circulation quality and its resultant value to advertisers. We specialize in helping determine appropriate circulation levels and in managing ratebase reductions and circulation mix to deliver the most desirable audience possible. Additionally, in groundbreaking work across the industry, we have been at the forefront of providing rigorous documentation of individual circulation sources and subsets.

Custom Research & Research Outsourcing

McPheters & Company handles the design, implementation, and analysis of a wide range of research projects in both the consumer and business-to-business areas. We are distinguished by our ability to gain input from senior executives in a variety of industries – and by our ability to design projects which contribute to the bottom line.

For organizations that prefer to avoid the overhead and management of their own dedicated research organizations, we can function in much the same way as an in-house operation – including taking management of custom and syndicated sources, analysis, and sales support.


McPheters & Company can create prototypes, using information fielded through subscriber studies, to enhance the selling proposition of publications and other media outlets that are too small to be measured by measurement currencies. The inclusion of prototype information within industry-accepted databases helps ad buyers and media planners to include these smaller titles in their advertising schedules.

Readership and Subscriber Studies

Understanding audience attributes reflects directly on bottom-line profitability. McPheters & Company has developed proprietary techniques that combine many of the benefits of online research with the more demanding sampling requirements of high-quality market research. These techniques are designed to garner the broadest possible participation while collecting information that will provide the greatest possible value to our clients at a competitive cost.

Reality-Based Planning

McPheters & Company conducts rigorous analysis and strategic planning for media-related organizations. We work with clients to directly improve their bottom-line profitability. This includes:

  • Gaining detailed and actionable insights into the marketplace
  • Establishing realistic goals and objectives
  • Building turn-key plans for attaining these goals
  • Identifying metrics to evaluate progress towards client objectives
  • Offering intensive client support
  • Monitoring performance