Sunday, March 4, 2012

Can the Magazine Industry Make the Change?

The print magazine industry has had a very grim last couple of years with a serious decrease in revenue.  The industries main source of revenue comes from advertising and distribution sales.  eMarketer stated that, “Overall ad spending on magazines declined 7.1% to $13 billion last year and will shed another 16.2% this year, bringing the market down to $10.9 billion. We will not see an incremental increase in the market until 2012, when eMarketer expects a meager 4% rebound” (  The print magazine industry had to make a serious change in order to survive the growing age of technology. 

The industry is being threatened by the 180 degree turn towards the digitalization of media.  The majority of media content can now be easily accessed online and has made it much more convenient for consumers to access content whenever they desire.  Print is not nearly as accessible and easy for consumers to obtain now that they have internet access at their finger-tips, be it a laptop, smartphone, iPad, or e-reader.  Another issue the industry is facing is that although online magazine versions do not accrue the cost of paper, ink and distribution, they now have new costs to deal with.  Havens and Lotz(2012) explain how many print media sources struggle to develop a profitable internet strategy.  However, at the same, advertisers have not moved into the online space with fees adequate to support these new costs or fully compensate for the decrease in readership of the physical print forms.

Although the transformation from print to digital has been a struggle for many print magazines, many are continuing to try and break into the digital world.  One method of success is through the use of ‘Single-Story Sales’ (  With the growth of e-reading on tablets, smart phones, etc. the emergence of Single-Story sales has been enormously popular.  In addition to this many magazines now have an app that consumers can download and access available content whenever they so please.  If I was an executive within this industry I would continue to move full speed ahead with the digitalization of content.  Personally, I still love having a hard copy of a magazine, but with the rapid increase in technology and the movements towards sustainability and being Green, I truly believe the print industry will eventually cease to exist.  

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