The Oft-Ignored Story of Magazine Media Growth

magazine-growthDespite challenges in measurement and reporting, the evidence of magazine media’s growth is becoming increasingly difficult to ignore.

Something fascinating is happening in the magazine media industry, and it’s an often ignored story according to research consultant Marius Cloete, writing in Magnetic Media.

“The continued efforts of magazine media publishers to place the consumer at the heart of their content strategies is evident in the number of platforms and experiences the industry now offers. Not only have we transformed our businesses to the modern media age, we have done so without sacrificing the levels of quality and originality that our content is known for,” Cloete writes.

And, he continues, growing magazine media brands pursue their move toward an audience-first, platform agnostic approach that focuses on the reader and how they want to engage.

The approach seems to be working, even as the industry struggles to redefine audience measurement in more meaningful ways.

“From events to apps, desktop, mobile, video channels and social media it is becoming increasingly clear that in order to truly assess the vitality of the industry, one needs to take a 360 degree view of its performance.

“Despite [the lack of this fresh approach to audience measurement], the evidence of magazine media’s growth is becoming increasingly difficult to ignore,” he continues. “The latest comScore data suggests that in a world where digital content is increasingly in oversupply, magazine media seem to be on an unassailable march to win the hearts, minds and attention of consumers.”

The comScore research clearly shows a growing demand for magazine content across digital platforms, with an 11.4% rise this year over last.

“This comes against a backdrop where digital behemoths like Twitter are reportedly struggling to grow their user base at the moment,” Cloete notes.

This content is not only engaging Millennials but is capturing their attention in longer form. And time spent per view is rising, in particular among 18-34 year-olds.

The key for publishers is to deftly leverage this digital content engagement into solid brand relationships, via their entire suite of channels including print, often called the “new” new media. The interest in magazine media content is clearly on the rise, and there’s no reason why every channel won’t benefit from this interest.