Our Blog

ABC Print Brands Update (Jan – July)

 It will come as no surprise to anyone that the latest set of ABC results shows print circulation decreases for the majority of titles.

We’re all fully versed in the way in which media continues to evolve, platforms develop and more and more audiences migrate to other touchpoints. But without using the broken record analogy, print means a whole lot more than the paper it’s printed on. Newsbrands and magazine brands are in strong health as evident by audience growth on other platforms and the new and exciting technology developments being employed by publishers.

In our analysis we have combined both print and digital editions (those that are a 95% replica of the print counterpart and read exactly like a magazine on a digital platform, such as a desktop or tablet device). Therefore, these figures exclude any fully interactive editions, which generally don’t have tablet edition ABC figures.

Looking at the latest print ABCs, all sectors have suffered decreases, with the exception of the youth market. The last six months for the press market has meant even more mobile and tablet developments, which are now readily used in print, offering even more sophisticated advertising opportunities. ‘Click-to-buy’ apps have really come to the fore across the market, especially within the fashion sector and Immediate Media have stated that they are now in transition from a magazine business to a content platform and service business. Radio Times have built an online hub for readers with offers from key retail partners and this model is set to be rolled out across other Immediate titles. The use of Blippar and Aurasma continues to make significant strides and they been wholeheartedly pushed by publishers and media agencies alike.

The ABC results show us that there is still a huge appetite for print brands. Whether specialist, for kids, business or lifestyle, the bottom line is that consumers want to be more in control of how they consume content, therefore there needs to be continued investment in digital platforms. Over the next year we will see more closures in the print market and a trend of magazines becoming available only in the digital format; this is inevitable with rising print costs. Continued investment in different platforms and brand extensions that promote loyalty amongst existing readers, whilst inspiring new audiences, will ensure the sustained success of print brands. Even as ABC circulations decline, their usage as a barometer of the strength of print brands also wanes. Only by looking holistically at reach across all touchpoints can we accurately assess their performance.

Please download the full report hereVizeum ABC Print Brands Update

Sam Hughes

Head of Press