Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Those A-List magazine titles are soaring

Number 1
Simon Dumenco, the media columnist for Advertising Age introduces the publication's annual A-List* with an interesting look back 10 years ago  in magazines (albeit with its focus firmly on the American market.) The A-List features the Top 10 glossy magazines that are considered to be excelling, or are "hot", based on Ad Age's research.

His retrospective notes that the hot cellphone in 2002 was a Nokia 6100. The hot launch was Budget Living, which ceased publication four years later. MySpace and Facebook didn't exist and Friendster had just launched.

As he points out, 10 years ago the industry was in a post-9/11 recessionary gloom and hadn't yet suffered the slump of 2006 and the financial meltdown of 2009-9. Publishers and commentators have tended to fixate on titles that closed, contributing to the conventional "print is dead" orthodoxy, he says. But the 2013 A-List is full of success stories and "best-ever" examples. The most successful have transformed themselves into gowth companies, "multimedia megabrands".
"What's perhaps most remarkable is not so much the phoenix-from-the-ashes-of-2008/2009 narrative -- because lots of business sectors have also bounced back from those dark days -- but how enduring many of our A-List magazines are. We tend to forget how ephemeral a lot of pure-play digital brands end up being, while overlooking the dynastic strength of iconic glossy brands. 
"Elle, for instance, is 28 years old (the U.S. edition, that is; the original French edition is 68). Fellow A-Lister New York magazine is 45. Esquire, also on the list, turns 80 this month. 
"What do you make of that, Friendster, MySpace, et al?"
*The A-List titles are:
10. Men's Fitness
9. W
8. Eating Well
7. New York
6. Women's Health
5. Elle
4. InStyle
3. VICE
2. Esquire
1. Bon Appetit

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