Consumer ABCs July - December 2016: Round-up
As the latest ABC circulation figures are released for the consumer magazine market, Newsline presents its round-up of the results. Click on the links to view the full analysis for each market, which also includes league tables and charts for Mediatel subscribers.
There were some mixed results coming from the Women's Lifestyle category in the latest consumer ABC magazine findings.
Although a fair number of titles recorded moderate levels of growth, or showed they were on an even keel, a large proportion also witnessed some disappointing declines in circulation between July and December 2016.
Following a relaunch last year, Cosmopolitan managed to buck the trend in the first half of 2016, reporting a stand-out yearly increase to its print and digital circulation. Although it could not maintain that upward trajectory in the second half of the year, the title was only down by -1.34% while remaining steady year-on-year.
The Hearst-owned title, which now operates a "pop-up and pick-up" distribution scheme, has a circulation of 408,000, suggesting there's plenty of life in a magazine that is willing to experiment.
Compared with other parts of the magazine market, men's lifestyle is showing some buoyancy, with the majority of titles remaining fairly stable between July and December.
Esquire had a good half-year and was the only title that managed to increase its circulation both over the period (+0.6%) and the year (+11%). It now has a combined print and digital presence of more than 65,000.
Men's Health was also in fairly good shape, with a 1.1% period-on-period increase securing its position as the second-most popular title with a circulation of 182,000. However, in line with most of the magazine market, the title was down -6.5% year-on-year.
The same can't be said for other fitness mags, however, with Healthy for Men (-27.4% YoY) and Men's Fitness (-16.8% YoY) looking a little body conscious at bottom of the market with much smaller - and dwindling - circulations.
The latest Consumer ABC results for the July - December period show that women's weekly magazines are continuing to feel the strain, with all print and digital circulations down year-on-year and just four up compared with the first half of the year.
After a poor start to the year, with circulation down by more than a third, OK Magazine posted the best results for the period, up 7.3%.
However, the Northern & Shell-owned title also managed to record the biggest yearly decline at -31.4%.
News & Current Affairs
No doubt helped by fodder from Brexit and the US Election, Private Eye reported record sales during the July to December period, with its circulation up 8.74% period-on-period and 8.9% year-on-year.
The Ian Hislop-edited title now has circulation of more than 250,200 - the highest in its 55-year history.
The Spectator Group also performed particularly well, with circulation up 7.3% PoP and 13.8% over the year - the biggest yearly increase in the market.
Publisher Hearst was a shining star in an otherwise poorly performing market, with three of its titles managing to record both period-on-period and year-on-year increases in circulation between July and December 2016.
Up 6.1% PoP, Elle Decoration boosted its circulation more than any other title in the second half of the year. It was also up 10.1% YoY to finish 2016 with a print and digital circulation of almost 73,800.
Country Living, the second most popular magazine in the market, was also up 4.5% PoP and 12.5% YoY to reach 188,900, while House Beautiful was up 2.3% PoP and 8.6% YoY.
Not such good news for Time Inc's portfolio, however, with a number of its titles posting significant circulation losses.
Although there were a host of declines in the TV Listings magazine market, none were severe and the picture looks reasonably steady overall.
Bauer's TV Choice remains the king of the couch potatoes' bible with a circulation of more than 1.2 million. The title was down just -1% period-on-period and -3.9% year-on-year.
In second place is Time Inc.'s What's on TV, holding steady with a circulation just shy of 945,000, while Immediate's Radio Times - up 2.5% - sells 685,000.