Covers Sell

Covers Sell

Archive for the ‘Cover of the Week’ Category

House & Home Celebrates 30 Years

Posted by Scott On October - 14 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The November 2016 issue of Canadian House & Home is a milestone issue, marking 30 years of producing the best home & style magazine in the category.

Editor Beth Hitchcock had this to say about the issue:

“For House & Home‘s 30th Anniversary issue, we searched for a cover star whose personality and home epitomized easygoing Canadian style. Kim Cattrall’s retreat on Vancouver Island — about 40 minutes from where she grew up — was the perfect fit. Though we all associate her with the wonderfully audacious Samantha Jones from Sex and the City, the real Kim is happiest in this understated, natural setting, and that’s the story we wanted to share with readers. We kept the sell lines simple and matched the banner to the rich red colour of Kim’s door for a mood that’s celebratory, Canadian and just festive enough to suit pre-holiday newsstands.”

The issue is 172 pages thick, and packed with great advice.  Look for this one to sell!


The Atlantic Gives a Preview

Posted by Scott On September - 14 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The October 2016 of The Atlantic is a cover that will sell.

This cover is a great example of executing on Rule #32:  Timing Matters

With the first of 3 debates scheduled for the USA Presidential election, just weeks away, this first tilt between Trump & Clinton is sure to be a ratings bonanza.

It’s like a heavyweight boxing extravaganza. And the cover might as well be a poster for Ali vs. Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle.

Smart of The Atlantic to get out in front on this opportunity.


The Rumble in the Jungle poster.jpg


For Your Listening Pleasure:


Adbusters Cool Fascismo

Posted by Scott On August - 31 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The August 2016 issue of Adbusters is one to watch.  While the traditional newsweeklies have been selling more copies than usual featuring Donald Trump as their cover boy, Adbusters is having some fun with a Trump cover of their own.

Adbusters can always be counted on for some very interesting, entertaining, and creative covers.

This one uses a classic black & white image of Trump, frowning, and let’s the UPC code make the point/joke.  Clever.  It’s a powerful cover.  And fun.

I expect that this one will resonate quite strongly with their readers and should sell well.  Great job!

2016 Aug



Fashion’s 8 Page Gatefold Cover

Posted by Scott On August - 8 - 2016


cover_of_the_week-125x125This just in from Fashion Magazine:

 Magazine has partnered with Canadian retailer Joe Fresh on the September 2016 cover featuring supermodel Karlie Kloss. Via an editorial-driven eight-page cover gatefold and second cover, FASHION has executed a first of its kind branded integration spanning both print and digital platforms.

“We are excited to bring this unique content collaboration to life in the September issue of FASHION via print, digital, social media and in-store,” said Jacqueline Loch, VP & Group Publisher St. Joseph Media, Women’s Brands. “This is partnership at its best and it really raises the bar for collaborations in the future. Joe Fresh challenged us to do something bold, first to market and groundbreaking — and we responded with a beautiful multi-platform editorial integration that is on-brand for FASHION, and designed to engage consumers.”

The extended cover gatefold – which includes FASHION directed original photography of five Joe Fresh looks and subtle Joe Fresh branding – opens up to a second cover featuring Karlie Kloss. The issue also contains a five-page feature article, also showcasing the model wearing items from the Joe Fresh fall collection. A special 5,000 copy print run of the cover gatefold will be available at Joe Fresh’s flagship store on Queen Street West beginning today.

The September issue also marks the first time FASHION has unveiled a cover via Snapchat (@FashionCan) with the brand curating the day’s story solely to the September cover reveal. Newsstand drop date (August 15th) will be supported by a special 45-second video featuring behind-the-scene moments from the cover shoot that will live online at and on Instagram (@FashionCanada). Further momentum will come from a contesting component whereby followers of FASHION’s Instagram have the chance to win a fall wardrobe from Joe Fresh valued at $500 using the FASHIONxJoeFresh hashtag. FASHION will host two shopping events this September in Toronto and Vancouver Joe Fresh stores, as well as provide editorial support for each.


Caitlyn (Bruce) is Back

Posted by Scott On June - 29 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125Caitlyn Jenner (formally Bruce Jenner) poses for Sports Illustrated, with her gold medal, to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Olympic win in the decathalon at the Montreal Games in 1976.

Apparently, the medal typically resides in her “nail drawer” now.   Jenner is 66 years old.

The cover features a strong sky bar sell for the main feature, a cut out of an old SI cover, and a gold Double Issue stamp in the upper right area, plus good use  of the “real estate” on the left hand side.

Look for sales to spike.




Posted by Scott On June - 15 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125People magazine’s June 27th, 2016 cover is a welcome approach to covering the appalling hate crime/mass murder in Orlando this week.

Rather then focusing on the terrorist or his despicable deed and the horrific carnage, People gives us something positive to focus on:  the human beings whose lives were stolen.  Better to glorify the victims, not the hater.

Too often, in the aftermath of these outrageous mass murders, all we get is an overdose of details about the terrorist’s life, and what might have caused him to act out.  Then we get the political spin from the pro & con gun control professionals. And inevitably arguments about immigration.  So tiresome, so boring, and so missing the mark.

Anderson Cooper of CNN did a moving tribute to the victims too.  He read out their names, one by one, with little details about their lives…incredibly powerful.






The Greatest

Posted by Scott On June - 10 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The June 13th, 2016 issue of Sports Illustrated is a beautiful tribute cover to Muhammad Ali.

This legendary boxing icon transcended sports and became a cultural force with respect to civil rights and opposition to the Vietnam War.

Many covers have been done of him over the years, but this one certainly is a classic.




ali 1ali 2

ali 4ali 6

ali 7ali 3


RollingStone or GraveStone?

Posted by Scott On May - 20 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125It seems that 2016 is turning out to be a bad year for a lot of music celebrity icons.

But my guess is that this is going to help increase the sales for RollingStone magazine.

The February 11th, 2016 issue is a tribute cover to David Bowie.  The May 5th, 2016 issue is a tribute to Merle Haggard. And the May 16th 2016 issue is for Prince.

Beautiful covers.



Feb 11th 2016May 5th 2016


May 16th 2016

Vancouver Magazine on a Roll

Posted by Scott On April - 29 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The May 2016 issue of Vancouver magazine is certain to be a winner.

The food theme is a subject matter that almost always works for city and regional magazines.  And this cover is exceptionally well done.

Check out two other recent covers.

The Jan/Feb 2016 issue (Wine) and the Nov 2015 issue (Buble) are also very hot.  Love the white background and clean and uncluttered look which really let’s the wine do the talking.  The black & white celebrity cover is elegant, and warmed up by the nice spots of hot yellow.

2016 Restaurant

2016 Wine2015 Buble


Meryl Streep

Posted by Scott On April - 18 - 2016

cover_of_the_week-125x125The May 2016 issue of Vanity Fair looks like a winner.

This classic profile shot of the actress, proves that a black & white cover can indeed be extremely powerful.

The 172 page thick magazine is a great value at just $5.99.



2016 May (Small)

Guess which of these 4 covers from 2015 sold the best to worst here in Canada?


Jan 2015                                                   Jun 2015

2016 Jan2016 Jun



Sep 2015                                                     Dec 2015

2016 Sep2016 Dec


Answers Here:

  1. Jun 2015 (Caitlyn) sold 45,705 copies at a 55% sell-thru
  2. Jan 2015 (Cooper) sold 30,768 copies at a 38% sell-thru
  3. Sep 2015 (Swift) sold 30,414 copies at a 40% sell-thru
  4. Dec 2015 (Murray) sold 17,170 at a 23% sell-thru

About Me

Scott Bullock’s Newsstand Cover Quiz Show is legendary in the industry. Using covers as the catalyst, this interactive and entertaining format is a light-hearted but hard-hitting spin on Packaging 101. Testing the cover savvy of magazine professionals across disciplines, the Quiz Show pits publishers against editors, circulators against art directors, retailers against wholesalers -- ultimately leading to new common ground in the quest for better covers. Scott is the Owner of Circ3, Smart Circulation Solutions, a circulation consultancy.



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