Sunny Days: Sesame Workshop Bullish on Kids Magazine Market

sesame-streetWhen Sesame Street magazine returned to print last January, the event was viewed as a positive sign in the children’s magazine category, a niche that shared the recent challenges of the industry as a whole. Fast forward almost one year, and the publisher, Sesame Workshop, is “making the case the demand for magazines for young readers is still strong,” writes Christine Haughney in the New York Times.

“At a press event held highlighting its digital products Tuesday morning, Sesame Workshop executives noted the expansion it had undertaken in the magazine world,” Haughney writes.

In addition to the print launch in January, the company has also unveiled a bi-monthly companion digital piece called Sesame Street S’More.

“It seems to be a viable business model,” said Jennifer A. Perry, vice president of worldwide publishing for Sesame Workshop, referring to its expansion into these titles.

“It’s been a rough path for children’s magazines in recent years, which have largely followed the same trajectory of the magazine industry as a whole,” says Haughney. “Sesame Street magazine, which began in 1970 with the creation of Sesame Workshop, was turned into a supplement to Parenting magazine in 2002. In 2008, at the start of the recession, the magazine became a free all-digital title. By 2011, Sesame Workshop stopped publishing the magazine entirely.”

And now, it’s back in print, like many other titles that shuttered or went digital-only during the recent recession. And like many other digital titles, their Sesame Street S’More is largely culled from original print content.

“Betsy Loredo, executive editor of book publishing for Sesame Workshop, said that three-quarters of the content for the magazine came from old issues of Sesame Street magazine,” continues Haughney. “But the content has also been inspired by input from the three sons of Paul Roberts, the manager of digital publishing assets for Sesame Workshop. Mr. Roberts said they had been offering him feedback on stories.”

It’s great to see Sesame Workshop seeing success with their titles and we hope their print magazine will be around for many more generations to enjoy.