Lads' mags continue to shed readers

Lads' mags Nuts, Zoo, Loaded and FHM lost thousands more readers over the course of the past year, according to the latest National Readership Survey (NRS).

Nuts: among the lads' mags to have shed readers in the past year says the NRS
Nuts: among the lads' mags to have shed readers in the past year says the NRS

Figures released today (26 August) show a significant year-on-year drop in the estimated readership of many leading men’s titles in the 12 months to the end of June.

These declines broadly reflect the falling circulations of men's mags revealed earlier this month by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

Bauer Media’s Zoo was the men's title that suffered the biggest fall. It lost 210,000 readers year on year – 35% of its total – to register an estimated readership of 392,000 for each issue over the 12 months to the end of June.

Zoo's great rival in the weekly magazine market, IPC Media's Nuts, saw its estimated readership drop 24% year on year to 609,000 per issue in the year to June.

Over the same period, Bauer’s FHM lost 27% of its readers to register an estimated readership of 993,000.

Stuff, which like Media Week is owned by Haymarket, suffered one of the biggest falls in readership. It was down 24% year on year, losing approximately 74,000 readers, to register an estimated readership of 234,000 in the 12 months to the end of June.

Loaded, which was sold by IPC to Vitality Publishing last year, also suffered from a continuing fall in reader numbers. It had an estimated readership of 379,000 during the period – a year-on-year fall of 29%.

In contrast to the big falls in the lads' mags market, the Dennis Publishing-owned Men’s Fitness saw its readership increase 10% year on year – gaining 63,000 readers – to an estimated readership of 676,000 per issue over the course of the year to June.

Similarly, the Natmag Rodale title Men’s Health saw a its readership climb 16% year on year to an estimated 1,244,000 per issue over the 12 months.

Unlike figures from the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABCs), which reveal sales and distribution performance, the NRS surveys around 36,000 people to produce an estimated readership.


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