Glossy Talk: Teen mag editors speak

Glossy Talk: Teen mag editors speak

Following the release of recent circulation and readership results, GWAS put the following question to Australia's (two!) teen mag editors: What does the disparity between circulation and readership mean for teen magazines?

DOLLY editor Tiffany Dunk
Editor: Tiffany Dunk
Circulation: 103,131 (down 26.5%); Readership: 390,000 (up 7.4%)
"The recent decline in DOLLY’s circulation coincided with a publishing decision to reduce the value of tip-ons we put out, instead choosing to focus on reconnecting the readers with the editorial content of the magazine. But while we may have lost the people who were buying the magazine solely for the gift, we have strengthened our relationship with those buying DOLLY for the magazine itself – this is reflected in our readership uplift.

I’ve spent the last year trying to up our game each and every issue and to make sure that we’re in touch with what our readers are most passionate about. As a teen mag editor, my primary focus has always been making sure that our core audience feel we’re delivering the best content on the issues that matter most to them so to see this reflected in an increase in readership has been incredibly gratifying for the DOLLY team.

I’m so proud of the product that we’re putting out and the feedback we’re getting from teens is encouraging, too – they’re really engaged by the brand and very vocal about what they love about what we do. They’re also pretty vocal about what they don’t like, too! At the end of the day, the reader is king (or queen as the case may be) and if we’re keeping them happy, engaged and coming back for more the next month then we can congratulate ourselves on a job well done."

Girlfriend editor Sarah Cornish
Editor: Sarah Cornish
Circulation: 90,054 (down 10%); Readership: 359,000 (up 9.1%)
"I think that readership growth is a great indicator of the health of a brand, and in the past 18 months the teen market circulation figures have been shaped by cover-mount activity and cover price changes, so the fact that readership is healthy is probably a better indicator of what the readers are truly feeling about magazines.

We know that teens are passionate about Girlfriend magazine and Girlfriend's point of view because they tell us via our Facebook page and website and the readership figures reflect this. Whereas teens used to be able to buy a magazine each month, now they buy it sometimes, but still try to get their hands on a copy to read.

Our research also tells us that they still place a high value on the intimate relationship they have with magazines and the specific information they can get from Girlfriend. They can also identify the clear differences between the two teen magazines and our market share growth in readership is based on the fact that Girlfriend identifies the key issues in a teen girl's life and addresses them in a positive and proactive way in every issue. We make it's our number one priority to always stay in touch with what our readers want, say and think and we are always on their side."

See also: Georgie Carroll's "Talking teen magazines" report

Girl With a Satchel


frangipani princess said...

I find it interesting that Sarah says her readers can identify a clear difference between the two teen magazines, when to me they're practically identical. Maybe I just read too many and they get all muddled in my head?

I also love how positive Tiff is despite the rather depressing circulation figures. You go, Tiff :)

Unknown said...

Hi, it's interesting to see the editors of these magazines deluding themselves about why their circulation has fallen. I'll just point to one fact - Frankie magazine has the fastest-growing circulation of any magazine in Australia. Why? Parents who were looking to buy a magazine for pre-teen and younger teenage girls that didn't focus solely on how girls look and 'relationships' were delighted to discover Frankie, where girls can read intelligent writing about teen culture, the arts, craft etc.

Really, in 2011, what parent would buy their daughter a magazine called 'Dolly'?