The Audit Bureau of Circulations for the six month period to December 2014 for monthly magazines and weeklies have been released this morning and they’re certain to add a few more grey hairs to already worried print publishing CEOs.
When it comes to weekly magazines, all 11 glossy weeklies suffered a hit. Worst performer was the men’s title Zoo Weekly. It continued its rapid decline falling 36.3 per cent year on year to an audit of just 24,122 and its future with those sorts of numbers appears a grim one.
NW was the worst performer of the women’s weekly glossies, dropping 15 per cent YOY to 73,143. Famous fell 14.5 per cent to 60,122 and Who took a 12 per cent hit to 101,405. However, on a somewhat positive sign, TV Week, OK!, New Idea and Take 5 all took hits of four per cent or less.
When it came to monthlies, Bauer Media’s Dolly took a 40 per cent hammering falling 42.2 per cent to just 40,499 monthly sales. While in more bad news for teen girl mags, Pacific’s Total Girl fell almost 30 per cent to 34,721.
Fairfax’s AFR Smart Investor was down 34 per cent to 23,130. Health titles also took a battering. Despite a recent change in editor, Men’s Health fell 19.3 per cent to 52,714. Weight Watchers was down almost 20 per cent and Good Health fell 14.2 per cent.
However, the news wasn’t all grim for monthly magazines with 10 titles actually increasing circulations. The standout was The AFL Record published by AFL Media which increased its number of readers by 34.3 per cent to 28.196. Other monthly improvers included Vogue Australia, Vogue Living, Australian Home Beautiful and the independent Australian Traveller which was up 15.1 per cent.
Predictably, magazine publishers put a positive spin on the audit figures.
“Our consumer-led publishing strategy continues to deliver compelling results for both our readers and our advertisers,” said Pacific Magazines Chief Executive, Peter Zavecz.
NewsLifeMedia’s CEO Nicole Sheffield said: “NewsLifeMedia is focused on being consumer led. Our brands offer compelling content, deep engagement and trust and they can be consumed on any platform or device or in print. We have some of the most powerful and trusted brands in this country and through continuous evolution we are delivering market leading products and platforms. As reflected in the results delivered by both Vogue Australia and Vogue Living in this audit.”
While Bauer Media’s director of sales, Tony Kendell, said: “Magazines continue to be the medium most loved by Australian women. When you combine the monthly reach of Woman’s Day – 2.92 million women – with its print and digital audience, and more than 500,000 Facebook likes, there is no better medium for advertisers. Our powerhouse title, The Australian Women’s Weekly, reaches 2.1million people, more than the 1.6 million or so watching MKR, or the 1.66 million who watched The Voice 2014 finale. As TV audiences crumble, our magazines and their online extensions provide advertisers with the best alternative.”