Advertising in the US Electronic Security Industry
There are a lot of magazines aimed at the security industry for its size. Advertising costs are typically in the range of $3500 - $5000 for a full page color add, down to $1000 - $1500 for a 1/4 page black and white. Most of the magazines range fairly widely in scope, covering intrusion, fire, access control, CCTV and home automation. Some focus more tightly on one of these areas, and I have listed these separately. The magazines can also be classified by their target market - dealers or end users. This classification is very rough and ready, Many end users and consultants read dealer magazines, and dealers who are interested in the specified market will generally also read some of the end user magazines. A media plan for the security industry requires careful analysis of the target market in relationship to the readers of the magazine.
The list below is hyper-linked where I am aware of a web site. Some of the sites include a media kit, though not all with pricing.
If you are looking for a magazine to read for industry news and background, Security System News is the one that is most like a journal of the industry. If you are an end user, you should read Security and if you are a home-owner looking for information on what to put into your home, you should read Electronic House.
Trade magazines aimed at dealers
Trade Magazines aimed at end users and consultants
Other security related magazines
Home Automation Magazines
Trade Association magazines
What we think
The advertising and magazine industry like to have everyone think that magazine advertising is the only way to develop brand awareness. Everyone knows that Awareness => Interest => Purchase, and that salesmen can turn Interest to Purchase only if Awareness was created ahead of the call.
I am not so sure. Many large companies in the industry run full page advertisements in virtually all the magazines every month. A smaller player cannot hope to develop brand awareness by doing this, since it is hopelessly outgunned.
I like to analyze the key players in the purchase decision, and examine what factors will awaken their interest. Then try to achieve this cost effectively. Advertising may well play a part, but like Avis in the sixties, if you are going to compete with companies that can outspend you on advertising by a factor of ten or more, then you have to try harder.