MPA president and CEO Linda Thomas-Brooks spoke out against the latest round of “magazines are dead” trope – as she referred to it – pointing out that relying on small sets of data leads to misleading conclusions.
First I would say, “How do you define magazines?” We are very thoughtful when we talk about our brands, we say “print magazines” to describe traditional printed magazine products. We say “magazine media” when we are talking about the totality of a brand and all the formats where its content lives – digital, video, social, events, licensing. Then I would say, “Why do you think that magazine brands aren’t thriving?” Because the majority are.
As audiences are thinking more critically about what voices and information they really trust, they are increasingly seeking out the professionally researched, written, edited, produced and curated content that magazine brands produce across channels. According to the MPA’s Magazine Media 360° Brand Audience Report, the total audience for all magazines rose 1.4% over last year to 1.7 billion, proving that there is enormous consumer demand for magazine media content.
I am fully aware that magazines go out of print or that magazine brands close entirely. But so do brands in every industry. We no longer have Pan Am, or Saab, or Vine. Television shows go off the air regularly and no one screams that TV is dead. For the past decade, we have consistently seen the number of magazine brands remain above 7,000. And we have seen new titles launch with terrific success.
Marketers and consumers want and need print. We are living in a very crowded media ecosystem and magazine brands provide a shortcut to quality. Magazines – in all their forms – are alive and well.
Source: Patterson, J. (2018, September 24). ‘Magazines Are Dead’, Debunked. FIPP.