The Magazinist
Critical Thinking for Publishers
Research Collections

Libraries, Collections, and Compilations

esearch is an invaluable aid to magazine management, content development... and especially to advertising sales.  Armed with knowledge of markets, spending patterns, and social trends, sales teams become more effective… and more likely to be welcomed back by their customers and prospects.

Collectively, the links below offer an enormous body of information, available free to the public, and well worth the effort to investigate. 

For some reason as yet unknown to the staff here at The Magazinist, a wide gulf separates the massive body of academic research conducted on media, and research conducted by and within the media industry itself.  Never the twain shall meet, apparently, but not because we didn’t try.  Both camps are represented below. 

Please note:  this page lists resource centers and other locations where multiple studies are available.  Individual studies are indexed here.

ABC (Audit Bureau of Circulations).  The Audit Bureau has several resource centers with a wide variety of material useful to circulators and advertising salespeople.


-Media Buyer Support Center

-Rules and resources for publishers

-Prototype reports.
-White papers and primers on circulation measurement in print and online

ABM Research Library.  A collection of studies promoting the value of advertising in B-to-B media. 


ATA (American Teleservices Association)  Compliance and Regulation Resources.  Telemarketers' trade association offers a variety of documents related to law and best practices.


Advertising Educational Foundation.  Nonprofit organization acts “to enrich the understanding of advertising and its role in culture, society and the economy.” Case studies of successful advertising campaigns very interesting, potentially useful as sales tools.  Streaming video (RM) of recent symposia are available here.  Topics include:


-Multiculturalism in the Marketplace

-The Advertising Industry's Commitment to Social Responsibility

-The New Femininity

-How is Advertising Shaping the Image of Women?


Advertising Media Internet Center (AMIC).  Web site for media and marketing professionals. Home of the Ad Guru.   


American Marketing Association.   Portal to massive collection of research and other information on marketing.  The online guide to research best practices is both interesting and helpful. 


ARF.  Advertising Research Foundation.  Foundation for creating and sharing information about the advertising industry.  Outstanding source of  information on advertising. 


The Annenberg Public Policy Center.  (U of Pennsylvania)  A premier communication policy center that addresses the social role of mass communications.  A rich source of information. 


Arbitron Inc.  Quite a bit of useful information on radio audiences is available on Web site.  Large consumer magazines and city magazines may be able to use this data effectively in sales.


BIN  B-to-B ad page and revenue reports from ABM.


Center for Communication.  The Center exposes young people to media issues, ethics, people, and and other aspects of the media business.  Material is mostly introductory. 


Center for Media Research  A project of MediaPost Communications.  Site provides access to media research from a variety of sources.  Heavy emphasis on the Internet. 


Claritas.  Large research company known for demographic data, including PRIZM consumer segmentation program.  Some information available free on Web site via press section.  Enhanced data from latest Census available at no cost here 


Communication Institute for Online Scholarship.  Enormous set of useful links to academic research on broad range of subjects.  Bad news: available to members only.  Good news: membership is only $50.00.  


Direct Magazine.  Resource Center offers a wide range of material of potential value to direct marketers. 


E-Marketer.  Company reviews and sorts publicly available information, then analyzes and compiles.  Web site is easily searched, and many reports, articles, and newsletters are available at no cost.   


Gale.  Research and educational publishing for libraries, schools and businesses. Multiple electronic databases including InfoTrac (research published in academic journals).  Access is available through many libraries.


Gallup Inc.  These folks do research at a galluping pace.  Up-to-the-minute polls on current issues are easily accessed via this comprehensive home page


General Social Survey.  A survey used to collect data on demographic characteristics and attitudes of residents of the United States. Conducted semi-annually since 1972 by the National Opinion Research Center (U of Chicago).  A unique and valuable resource.  


GFK Custom Research North America.  The U.S. parent of Mediamark Research Inc., Starch, and Roper.  Some top-line information is available via the company’s searchable news releases


Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Resource Library   Incredibly deep collection of practical material on everything from lead generation to billing. 


IBM Media and Entertainment Resource Center.   A remarkable amount of useful, free research.  Not surprisingly, most reports involve technology. 


IDC.  Company specializes in technology-related research.  Some information is available on Web site.


Ipsos ASI.  This large media research company acquired Monroe Mendelsohn in 2008.  The Mendelsohn Affluent Study has been a guidebook to the habits of wealthy Americans for years.  Ipsos makes the Affluent Survey and a lot more information available on their Web site. 


JSTOR.  A not-for-profit archive of scholarly journals maintained in an electronic database.  Access is available through many libraries. 


Kent Library (SE Missouri State U.) Research Guide.  Excellent, compact bibliography of information sources on mass communications. 

Magazine Publishers of America. (MPA).
    The whole site offers information that helps make the advertising case for magazines.  This page is an especially helpful place to look for detailed research.


Marketer’s Portal.  A great set of links on a range of marketing-related topics from Zenith Optimedia

The Media Audit.  
The company's primary product is a syndicated audience survey currently conducted in over local 80 markets, and sold in annual subscriptions.  Local market summary data is available in the News Releases section. 


Media Management Inc.  Firm assists advertisers in evaluating media performance.   Media Watchdog reports provide analysis on a handful of media-related topics at no cost.  


Mediamark Research and Intelligence (MRI).  Well-known research firm makes quite of bit of useful material available on Web site. 


Microsoft Research.  Enormous body of information on emerging media and the human-computer interface.   


Millward Brown.  In its Knowledge Center section, this international research company provides several studies that make excellent sales tools.  Start with Knowledge Points

Monroe Mendelsohn Research.   See Ipsos ASI above. 


Newspaper Association of America (NAA) Library of Resources  A treasure trove of information on a wide range of subjects, from advertising to workplace management—much applicable to magazines. 


New Strategist Publications.  If you ever need to know who buys what, this is the place to turn.  And the Demo Memo is not only sui generis--it's one of a kind.


Newsweek Media Research Index.  A bibliography of important nonacademic media research spanning 50 years.  Unfortunately, the site lists studies but does not provide online access.  


Nielsen Media Research  Some general information, including current TV rating data, is available on the Web site.  Large consumer magazines and city magazines may be able to use this data effectively in sales.   

Pew Research Center.
 The Center provides information on the issues, attitudes and trends through public opinion polls, social research; analysis of news coverage; and by holding forums and briefings. The Center's eight projects offer a staggering body of nonpartisan, independent research… 


-Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. 
-Project for Excellence in Journalism .
-Pew Internet & American Life Project. 
-Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. 
-Pew Hispanic Center. 
-Pew Global Attitudes Project. 
-Social & Demographic Trends.   

PIB  Consumer magazine ad pages and revenue from MPA.   See also…

-Magazine Monitor.  Tracks consumer magazine ad performance by subject category.  From MediaWeek magazine. 

Poynter Online Resource Center.  Enormous database of useful information for and about journalists. 

PQ Media.  A leading commercial researcher.  The company produces syndicated research in interesting areas, including word-of-mouth and alternative out-of-home media.  Some summary data is available at no charge. 

Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).  Some of useful information including PR best practices are on the organization’s Web site.

Public Service Advertising Research Center
.   Source of research and other information library about public service advertising. 

.  Large and rich database of books and journal articles on mass communications and other subjects.  Some available at no cost, but full access to the whole shooting match requires subscription.  Free trials are offered.  Wonderfully entertaining to browse. 

Redbooks Online.  Provides competitive intelligence and prospecting data to media companies, advertisers, and ad agencies.   Some useful and interesting information is available on Web site at no cost.

  An interesting take on the art of marketing, with an aren't-we-hip spin.  No surveys, but an occasional nugget.
 An awe-inspiring collection of information sources for jounalists built by Robert Niles, editor of the USC Annenberg Online Journalism Review.  An excellent starting point for any search. 

Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.
 (U of Connecticut).  Vast repository of public opinion research, including information on use and perception of the media.  Member institutions (mostly academic) have access to the whole trove.  Some material is freely available to the public.  Well worth browsing. 

Scarborough Research.   Scarborough produces a variety of research services that measure consumer shopping patterns, lifestyles and media habits.  Products include VALS consumer purchasing profiler.  Some reports available at no cost here.  

Simmons Market Research Bureau
  Well known for consumer research and analysis.  Web site is a good source of material on consumer purchasing habits. 

Social Science Research Council Media Research Hub
.  The project’s goal is “building a stronger culture of collaboration between scholars, advocates, practitioners, and policymakers.”  Site contains rich set of links to some interesting studies, many related to emerging media. 

Statistical Resources on the Web
.  (U of Michigan)  Lists more than 100 categories and provides links to relevant statistical sites for each.  An unbelieveable compilation of excellent sources.  

SWOP Resources.  Includes SWOP standards, materials, resources, products, and tools.

TNS Media Intelligence.
  Huge provider of syndicated and custom research in numerous markets.  Products include Mag Advisor, which tracks advertising in consumer magazines.  TNS makes semiannual advertising spending forecasts, available in press section of Web site.  Otherwise, very little free data on site.
   Site provides links to thousands of news sources covering every country and many subjects.  Fascinating set of links in Media Criticism section.