By Paul Pannone
It’s taken longer than usual for wedding industry sources familiar with the decline of print publications to weigh in on the latest ABC numbers. But as certain as the sun rises in the morning they were there today to question the reported numbers, as they relate to bridal publications.
Newsstand sales continue to plummet, while subscription price online nears a buck.
When asked how a publication can sell a magazine for $1.16 a copy and stay in business one source revealed;
“Consumer subscriptions aren’t intended to generate publishing revenue. They’re intended to substantially increase circulation. It’s much more financially efficient to sell consumer subscriptions at virtually no profit or even at a minor loss than to increase circulation with sponsored subscriptions or verified subs. Both sponsored and verified subs cost more money to fulfill.
The flaw in the subscription model is that consumers generally don’t receive their first subscription copy for 30 to 60 days after mailing the subscription form. While Conde Nast would dispute this timing, subscribe to the magazine personally and you’ll see the time delay first hand.
The vast majority of bridal apparel buying decisions are made within the first 60 days after the engagement. Therefore, consumers probably won’t receive their subscription copy in time for it to have an impact on their bridal apparel buying decisions. Subscriptions copies can be important for travel marketeers. However, based upon the dramatic decline of Brides travel advertising, I suspect that the impact on travel bookings isn’t as great as it may have been in the past. Travel advertisers are much like mail order advertisers. They will place ads anywhere that produces results. The last issue of Brides had five travel ads,” according to one source we asked.
In early August eWedNewz broke the newZ that BRIDES Magazine would return to a bi-monthly format in an ongoing effort to stem the declining newsstand sales. Experts taking a closer look at the ABC circulation numbers wondered how Bride’s circulation dropped 26% for the first half and still remain at 64,143 for newsstand – which is the barometer of editorial vitality. Sources keeping close watch on the story claim to be keeping score and something looks shady to them.
Nearly half of respondents to current poll says Brides magazine has fallen too far to survive; only 19% say they’re adjusting to market conditions but will manage to survive.
What do you say?
eWedNewz continues to investigate this story and will report the findings, as they’re uncovered.
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