Buyers claim ABCs fail to justify ratecard increases

Agency press buyers are planning to get tough with magazine publishers, following the release of the January-June ABCs.

Agencies are concerned that titles such as Vogue, which plans to increase its ratecard by ten per cent next year, have not raised their circulations enough to justify the increases.

Vogue’s January-June ABCs were almost static year-on-year at 183,630, an increase of 0.1 per cent.

“The advertiser isn’t getting anything extra for his money,” says CIA Medianetwork director of magazines Richard Britton. “The ratecard increases will be because of paper price increases, without magazines giving any more value.”

Condé Nast’s fastest growing title is GQ. The men’s magazine raised its circulation by 16.5 per cent year-on-year to 127,276. Tatler increased its sales by 7.3 per cent over the same period to 86,248.

BBC Magazine’s Top Gear overtook GQ in the men’s magazine sector. It posted a 14 per cent increase year-on-year to take it to 156,385.

Top Gear is now the UK’s second-best selling men’s magazine after Emap’s rock title Q.

BBC Magazines’ best selling publication, the Radio Times, remained fairly static with a circulation of 1,433,223 – a fall of 0.5 per cent year-on-year. The magazine has effectively halted its long-term circulation decline since deregulation of the TV listings market in 1991.

BBC Magazines credits a 1.5m investment in the Radio Times’ editorial last autumn and a 2m ad campaign for the turnaround. However, the title has yet to post a year-on-year rise in circulation.

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