July 25, 2012
/ by Rebecca Bredholt
One year ago we calculated the nation’s most widely read monthly and bimonthly magazine titles based on rate-base circulation. The numbers are based on averages that are examined over a six to 12 month time frame, since the exact numbers of subscribers can vary greatly month-to-month. What we found this year is that the companies who update the audited circulations, such as Audit Bureau of Circulations, still have not updated many of their client’s six month averages since December 2011. The magazines that have updated figures have all seen drops since last year. There’s also a new title entering our top slots: a magazine about social media. inVocus reviewed the top magazines and compared them to last year’s list:
Parade – Still holding the top slot with 33 million readers is Parade magazine, probably because this title is inserted into major newspapers across the country. The target audience for this publication is split pretty evenly down the middle for both men and woman, while the median age of readers is roughly 50.7.
USA Weekend – Its rate base weekly circulation from last year is virtually unchanged at 22,600,000. In a fairly even split, 44 percent of this publication’s readers are men and 56 percent are women. The median reader’s age falls at 51.
AARP Magazine – Falling slightly from last year’s rate base bimonthly circulation of 23,748,475 down to 22,407,000 is one magazine everyone over 55 will receive one day. Readers for all editions are about equally split among male at 41.6 percent and female at 58.4 percent.
Spry: Targeting health conscious baby boomers, this magazine has an audience that is predominantly women at 80 percent with a median age of 51. The rate base monthly circulation of 9,231,280 is the same as last year.
Dash Magazine – Aimed at readers who are 25 to 54, the majority of this magazine’s readers are women with a median age of 45.7. The rate base monthly circulation of 8 million is the same as last year.
Better Homes and Gardens – Roughly 78.1 percent of the readership is women, while 57.6 percent falls between the ages of 18 to 49 with a median age of 47. The rate base monthly circulation of 7,644,011 dropped only a little this year to 7,617,884.
Athlon Sports – This publication targets sports enthusiasts and is distributed with the Chicago Sun-Times and other Sun-Times Media newspapers across the U.S. The rate base monthly circulation still shows the same number at 7,048,506.
Reader’s Digest – The rate base monthly circulation is now down to 5,560,046 from 6,112,811. This publication targets Americans of all genders and age groups. The median age of readers is 52.7.
Game Informer Magazine – The biggest gain of our top circulating magazines added more than 2 million new readers. Targeting video game enthusiasts, this magazine has a readership that is predominantly male at 84 percent and has a median age of 27. Rate base monthly circulation went from 5,073,003 to 7,514,460.
National Geographic Magazine – The readership is almost evenly distributed between males at 56 percent and females at 44 percent. The median age of readers is 45.6. The rate base monthly circulation dropped from 4,493,024 to 4,480,788.
Good Housekeeping – This magazine has a predominantly female readership of 88.7 percent with a median age of 48.4 years. The rate base monthly circulation dropped from 4,427,964 to 4,341,426.
Ladies’ Home Journal – This magazine has a median age of 55.8 with the majority of women readers being 30 or over at 95.4 percent. The rate base monthly circulation dropped from 3,837,286 to 3,232,354.
People Magazine – The median age of readers is 41.1. Approximately 71.6 percent of readers fall between the ages of 18 and 49, while 64.9 percent are between the ages of 25 and 54. The rate base weekly circulation is up (barely) from 3,553,420 to 3,569,811.
Time – The median age of its readers is 45.9 and readership is almost evenly distributed between males at 53 percent and females at 47 percent. The rate base weekly circulation dropped from 3,312,484 to 3,298,390.
ESPN The Magazine – One of the few titles increasing this year to 2,109,547, up from a bimonthly rate base circulation of 2,073,812. The median age of readers is 33. Seventy-nine percent of readers are male and 45 percent are between the ages of 18 and 34.
Sports Illustrated – This magazine made the news recently for a round of layoffs, but managed to only lose about 34,000 readers, dropping to 3,178,760 from 3,212,278. The median age of readers is 38, with 43 percent falling between the ages of 18 and 34. Its audience is mainly male, with 77 percent men and 23 percent women. The median household income is $63,595 with 40.6 percent bringing in at least $75,000.
Cosmopolitan – This title slides out of our top slots to be replaced by Twitter & Business. See below.
Tweeting & Business –This is one of three titles serving social media as it applies to businesses. GSG WorldMedia also publishes LI & Business (for LinkedIn), the Big G & Business (Google) and FB & Business (Facebook). Each of the four titles has a 5 million rate base readership. No demographic breakdown was available.
If you have opted to read a magazine online rather than in print lately, let us know about it: invocus(at)vocus.com
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