Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

When was the last time a supplier said they would report you?

Mark Fletcher
February 8th, 2014 · 24 Comments

A successful newsagent with a growing business told me yesterday that a magazine publisher representative visiting their business was unhappy with the shop and said they would have to report them. The representative said the newsagency looked too much like a gift shop.

This is in a business achieving double-digit year on year growth, a business worth more today than a year ago as a result of lifting gross profit. A business worth more to this publisher than it was worth a year ago. Yet the publisher representative treats the good retailer like a naughty school kid.

No magazine publisher or distributor has the right to complain about how a successful newsagency looks, they gave up thst right when they supported deregulation fifteen years ago.

Have you been told you will reported? If so, please share your story here and out overbearing behaviour.

20 likes

Category: Ethics · Newsagency challenges · Newsagency management

24 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Angelo // Feb 8, 2014 at 7:28 AM

    Going to be reported? For what? Not conforming to their view on where and how they wish their titles to be displayed? For wanting to put their product according to how they believe will achieve better sales for them?
    Unless there is some overwhelming financial reason to conform to the request then I would tell the rep to change hands!

    1 likes

  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Feb 8, 2014 at 8:39 AM

    Angelo it happens too often from what I hear.

    0 likes

  • 3 Jim // Feb 8, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    If this is true, then that publisher rep deserves a size 11 in the clacker. This is more than overbearing – it is sheer arrogance and I am glad it has not happened to me. If ever there was a case for justifiable homicide, this is it.

    Unbelievable!

    0 likes

  • 4 Jarryd Moore // Feb 8, 2014 at 10:03 AM

    Seriously – this happens!?!? If a supplier ever said anything like that I’d ban them from the store and send them a video of their publications being incinerated.

    0 likes

  • 5 shauns // Feb 8, 2014 at 10:24 AM

    lets get straight to the point who is the publisher . Name and Shame better still name the rep .

    4 likes

  • 6 Jack // Feb 8, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    I agree with shauns. And you don’t even have to worry about upsetting the supplier Mark as you know well few suppliers have enough respect for the channel to read the blog.

    0 likes

  • 7 Mark Fletcher // Feb 8, 2014 at 1:10 PM

    The person was a merchandiser representing Bauer. I have no idea what the direction from Bauer is on rules and reporting newsagents.

    1 likes

  • 8 Steve // Feb 8, 2014 at 2:05 PM

    One advantage of being in the bush,I’ve never seen a magazine rep. This post is making me think that may be a good thing.

    3 likes

  • 9 Jenny // Feb 8, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    A merchandiser? That’s funny! Hardly a power position.

    1 likes

  • 10 Allan wickham // Feb 8, 2014 at 8:23 PM

    Jack that’s where you are so very wrong. Suppliers and many key industry people do read Marks blog it’s just that they won’t be seen doing it……very sad on their behalf really.

    1 likes

  • 11 Allan wickham // Feb 8, 2014 at 8:45 PM

    Jim & Jarryd, I can assure you it’s true, it was MY store. I approached Mark about it because I was so very pissed off about the whole situation. I have since sent the relevant person at Bauer an email requesting I don’t receive a visit from their merchandisers in the future. This particular merchandiser not only expressed concern about my store they expressed it to my staff and not to my wife who was in the office at the time. This same merchandiser and I have had a very good working relationship, on numerous occasions she has commented how proactive we are. We are one of many stores in her area where she has not had to do much merchandising at all as we have always used the Bauer point of sale and actively promoted their titles ourselves. I have been a very active participant in the Bauer Connections program and see magazines as having a very very important role in our news agency. Mags have had a tough couple of years and may well continue to do so but to have this type of behaviour from a merchandiser in a store that genuinely cares about mags is gut wrenching. I have taken a while to respond on this because I am deeply hurt about her actions. I was so pissed off this morning that I went to work with the intention of pulling down the “yours” magazine display and every other ACP promotion I have but I stopped short of that, grabbed a nice deep breath and decided that would be unfair to the publisher. I pushed “yours” in every possible way I could today for the benefit of MY customers, nobody else. Anyway I’m going to sign off now in case I start ranting, if I haven’t already.

    Cheers
    Al

    P.S. Starting to work out why people don’t use their full names here…..!

    13 likes

  • 12 Allan wickham // Feb 8, 2014 at 9:33 PM

    I should clarify that I approached Mark about raising the issue, he has in no way told me how to handle this. I just re read how I wrote the post. I asked Mark if this was normal practice from distributors, as he replied, he has in idea about the practices from Bauer on this.

    1 likes

  • 13 Allan wickham // Feb 8, 2014 at 9:34 PM

    “No idea”…. My typing is very bad tonight

    4 likes

  • 14 Mark Fletcher // Feb 9, 2014 at 7:53 AM

    Bauer merchandisers have a track record of over-stepping. I have been reported previously, back in ACP days.

    In one situation, I started using the back of a display unit they provided to promote a non-ACP title. They had no use for the back and had never promoted the use of the back. Either I stopped using the back to promote other titles or they would remove the unit.

    I don’t have any floor units from Bauer now.

    1 likes

  • 15 June // Feb 9, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    My Bauer merchandiser (on being told that I had already merchandised the mags I wanted to push for the week ) said “well I will report that you wouldn’t LET me put my merchandising up”
    She was told in no uncertain terms that it was my shop and that I would put up what I considered to be the best mags for me to promote for the week because I knew my demographic and she didn’t.
    She then spoke in Greek to one of my shop assistants (who is Greek) and she told me after the rep left that she was sick to death of me saying “no” to her and that she wished she didn’t have to come here.
    I haven’t seen her since then so maybe she got the message.
    By the way – the mag she was so eager to display (I won’t name it because that would be unfair to the publisher) I only got 5 copies so go figure.

    1 likes

  • 16 David @ Angle Vale Newsagency // Feb 9, 2014 at 5:31 PM

    Re the fixtures – I own all mine except the small display stand for The Advertiser / Australian.

    Ask Mark keeps reminding us, we need to be retailers, we need to be in control and that is one less tool that can be used to control my business.

    0 likes

  • 17 Wally // Feb 10, 2014 at 9:07 AM

    Slightly off subject but do others carry all the government forms for car rego and working with children, tax tables etc. Why would newsagents be expected to carry these? We dont get paid for them or do we?
    Just a customer service??? Or is this another one of those leftovers from the good old days when newsagents were the only ones to sell papers and mags.

    1 likes

  • 18 June // Feb 10, 2014 at 4:53 PM

    I have requested TFN declaration forms 3 times now and still haven’t arrived so I just tell customers that they can download their requisites from ato.gov.au
    and that satisfies most of them (and leaves me with another drawer to use for my business instead of the ATO’s business.

    1 likes

  • 19 David @ Angle Vale Newsagency // Feb 10, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    In NZ the employer provides the form to the employee. That’s the way it should be here, too.

    I have removed from my display area, keep under counter until I run out, and then will do as June does.

    Although, been tempted to charge as most people looking for them expect there to be a fee. :-)

    1 likes

  • 20 Jarryd Moore // Feb 10, 2014 at 8:35 PM

    Strange that it isn’t the case here Shaun. Far more centralised. We’ve always provided employees with the form.

    1 likes

  • 21 Bruce // Feb 10, 2014 at 10:11 PM

    Don’t we get a minute fee from Gotch for having them .?

    1 likes

  • 22 Mark Fletcher // Feb 11, 2014 at 6:49 AM

    We were paid a tiny amount. Not worth it. The traffic generated rarely converted.

    3 likes

  • 23 Ben // Feb 13, 2014 at 10:52 AM

    Today I wish to report a supplier/suppliers. The guys at G&G and NDC must be behind on their monthly budget because they were kind enough to increase supply (just by 2 or 3) on about 10 titles and supply me with new
    10 BZ’s or Oneshots. I guess they just made budget….

    4 likes

  • 24 shauns // Feb 13, 2014 at 2:30 PM

    yeah noticed that as well today

    1 likes

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