The latest ABC figures confirm that the established rock music
titles have again failed to strike a chord with readers.
It was the weekly titles such as Melody Maker and the NME that suffered
the most in the latest results. Despite being relaunched as an A4 colour
magazine backed by a pounds 500,000 marketing spend last year, Melody
Maker registered a 5.7 per cent decline period on period. NME declined
by 20 per cent in the same period.
The Ministry of Sound’s magazine, Ministry, rose by 36 per cent and
IPC’s Uncut saw a 25 per cent increase year on year. Uncut, which is
only 34 issues old, is still discovering readers and further increases
Its success in covering film, books and music aimed at the Mojo and Q
reader shows that there continues to be mileage in targeting an older
There was also evidence of this in Mojo’s figures, which saw a
respectable 6.8 per cent rise year on year.
Niche titles such as Mixmag, which is published in partnership with Kiss
100, saw a 9.9 per cent rise year on year.
Publishers have admitted that there is room for improvement. Andy
McDuff, the managing director of IPC music and sport, said that ’the
music weeklies have yet again faced turbulent times’. He added that the
situation at NME, which is about to undergo a review, is ’far from
satisfactory’. Select, which had a disappointing set of figures - down
by more than 20 per cent year on year - is set to be relaunched in
Verdict The outlook is positive for the younger weekly market, with the
impending launch of NME Radio and the ’nu-metal’ boom, which is helping
buoy up Kerrang!’s sales. The weightier titles are also taking action to
boost sales: Mojo is planning to launch in the US and Q is set to
exploit its brand with an extension into TV and radio.
Title Publisher Total ABC Period on Year on
period % year
Q Emap 211,229 3.3 0.2
Ministry MoS 83,486 3.7 35.9
Mojo Emap 80,040 6.5 6.8
NME IPC 76,079 -16.2 -16.1
Mixmag Emap 72,115 7.2 9.9
Select Emap 56,049 -3.8 -21.4
Uncut IPC 50,220 12.8 25.0
Muzic IPC 43,606 0.2 1.2
Kerrang! Emap 42,116 2.5 1.5
Melody Maker IPC 32,115 -5.7 -20.4
Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations (July-December 1999)