Ad Revenue Up, Pages Down in September
Showing signs of recovery, the magazine business was still hurt by an economic recovery crawling at a snail's pace and an uncertain job market.
On the positive side, magazine revenue was up 6.3% in September when compared to last September. Total revenue reached $1.94 billion for the month, according to the latest statistics from the Publishers Information Bureau. On the negative side, advertising pages struggled to reach the level of last September, the PIB reports. Advertising pages for September totaled 23,952, down 4.5% from last September. Year to date, advertising revenue jumped 9% totaling $12.87 billion, while advertising pages were up 0.3% over last year totaling 162,155.
"We are heartened to see continued strength in major ad categories, most notably drugs and remedies, with both pages and revenue up for 21 straight months, followed by automotive and toiletries and cosmetics, up for 16 straight months," says Ellen Oppenheim, executive vice president of the Magazine Publishers of America, an industry trade group that oversees PIB.
"However, several categories, particularly financial, insurance and real estate and public transportation, hotels and resorts, were affected by continued economic turmoil, slow employment recovery and weakened consumer confidence, resulting in an overall decrease in ad pages."
The PIB reports eight of the 12 major advertising categories experienced growth in ad revenue over September 2002, while four major categories recorded ad page increases. Apparel and accessories, automotive, drugs and remedies, and toiletries and cosmetics posted both revenue and page gains in September. The direct response, financial, insurance and real estate, and public transportation, hotels and resorts all posted decreases in revenue and advertising pages, when compared to last September.
Nine of the 12 advertising categories made strides in revenue for the year, while five categories registered gains in advertising pages. Apparel and accessories, automotive, drugs and remedies, home furnishings and supplies and toiletries and cosmetics all posted advertising page and revenue gains year to date. Direct response, financial, insurance and real estate, and public transportation, hotels and resorts dropped in revenue and advertising pages.