Women’s titles suffer in ABCs

Titles about computing, cinema and health and beauty are booming but, according to the latest ABCs, magazine sales in the high-volume women’s weeklies and TV listings markets have slipped.

Titles about computing, cinema and health and beauty are booming

but, according to the latest ABCs, magazine sales in the high-volume

women’s weeklies and TV listings markets have slipped.



Last Friday’s ABC results showed a growing market for computer, internet

and gaming titles, with VNU’s Computer Active the star of the show,

climbing 45.7 per cent to record a bi-weekly circulation of 325,836. The

market for internet titles grew 122.5 per cent.



Film and video review titles also fared well, with total sales in this

market climbing 207.2 per cent. Growth was largely fuelled by the

success of ABC debutante Inside Film, which recorded sales of 525,000.

Uncut also rose 25 per cent year on year.



The women’s health and beauty magazines market grew 64 per cent year on

year. It was buoyed by four market entrants: Shine, Healthy, Real Health

& Beauty and Shape. The market leaders Top Sante and Zest also enjoyed

period-on-period growth.



But the success of these sectors could not disguise the disappointment

of another poor period for the bigger-volume women’s weeklies market,

where only OK! shone. Market leader Take A Break slipped 3.4 per cent

year on year, while Woman (-5.8 per cent), Bella (-6.3 per cent) and

Woman’s Own (-13.1 per cent) also struggled. The TV listing titles also

slipped, with the market falling 1.9 per cent year on year.



Andy Martin, press director at CIA, said : ’It looks as if the women’s

weeklies are drifting away.’ Marc Bedwell, press director at MediaVest,

agreed. ’They need a revamp, it’s only gossip titles that are up,’ he

said.



Danny Donovan, head of press at Western International Media, commented:

’The really focused markets like computing and health and beauty look

good, but it was only the specialists and the new entrants that kept the

men’s and women’s lifestyle markets looking healthy.’



The ABC figures were particularly bad for Melody Maker, which slipped to

32,115 copies. Publishing director Robert Tame admitted the title might

not be viable below 30,000 copies.



Top performers

Title             Publisher      Change

                                % y-o-y

Computer Active   VNU             +45.7

Ministry          Ministry        +35.9

OK!               N&S             +37.7

Ideal Home        IPC             +27.7

Bizarre           John Brown      +26.7


Disappointing performers

Title             Publisher      Change

                                % y-o-y

19                IPC             -26.9

Melody Maker      IPC             -20.4

Arena             Emap            -22.7

Company           NatMags         -16.6

Woman’s Own       IPC             -13.1

Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations



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