NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- The latest release of official magazine circulation figures has revealed a scene every bit as choppy and slow-growing as expected, with big gains only for younger titles still finding their limits and moderated strength for celebrity weeklies.
Can't stop Rachael Ray
Every Day with Rachael Ray from Reader's Digest Association, one of the young ones, turned in an impressive 57.6% increase in average paid and verified circulation, according to the new Fas-Fax report from the Audit Bureau of Circulations. That came with a 25.8% decline on the newsstand, but 184.7% growth in subscriptions.
Women's Health from Rodale, another recent entry, reported 51.8% growth in average paid circulation, drawing on a 52.1% spike at newsstands and a 51.6% spike in subscribers.
And OK Weekly, the celebrity import from England, turned in a 54.3% increase in paid and verified circulation for an average of 809,411, fueled by a 75.1% increase in subscriptions and a 25.3% leap in newsstand sales.
Two years ago those kinds of numbers belonged to In Touch Weekly, Bauer's then-new, budget-priced entry into the star-gazing field, but In Touch has actually maintained pretty strong growth since then too. It reported a 10.6% increase in newsstand sales, which is the source of virtually all its circulation. Its sibling, Life & Style Weekly, grew 6.8%.
'Mature' celeb titles
Other, more "mature" celebrity weeklies showed some fractures inside their growth. Time Inc.'s People, far and away the biggest and most profitable of the category, showed a 2.2% slip in paid and verified circulation as single-copy sales fell 5.6% and subscriptions edged up 0.4%.
Us Weekly, part of Wenner Media, said its average paid and verified circulation grew 4.8%, although buyers will note that its newsstand fell 3.4% and its use of verified public-place copies grew 58.5%.
And Star from American Media registered a 3.7% drop, on a single-copy decline of 3.5% and subscription fall-off of 5%. Star is intentionally lowering its circulation, however, to reduce costs and improve the quality of its reader base.
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CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said Us Weekly's newsstand fell 15.2% rather than the correct figure, a decline of 3.4%