Covers Sell

Covers Sell

Archive for August, 2011

Lil Wayne in Triplicate

Posted by Scott On August - 31 - 2011

One rule of newsstand success is:  If it works, keep doing it.  If it stops working, tweek it again to make it work.

RollingStone gets it.

The April 16th, 2009 issue, Lil Wayne Goes Rock, sold 119,827 copies, according to ABC statistics.  Only four other covers, of the twenty-four published that year sold better.

So, on February 18th, 2010, RollingStone came out with, Lil Wayne Goes to Jail.  It sold 115,191 copies.  It was the best selling issue in the June 2010 ABC statement, and 12% better than the overall average for 2010.

So, on February 3rd, 2011, RollingStone published, wait for it,  Lil Wayne Gets Out of jail.  It sold 94,078 copies.  Of the twelve issues in the first half ABC statement, it was the 4th best.  It beat the overall average by 5%.

I blogged about this cover as the Cover of the Week:

Click on images to enlarge them.

15 Smart Ways

Posted by Scott On August - 15 - 2011

The Fall 2012 issue of GardenMaking magazine will hit newsstands August 27th.  This cover is packed with benefit-oriented sell lines, nine in total, while still retaining a noncluttered, even elegant feel.  The main sell line uses the upper left quadrant to punch home the core value proposition “15  Smart Ways to Renew Your Garden.”

Angelina is the Goddess of Vogue

Posted by Scott On August - 14 - 2011

The December 2010 issue of Vogue featured Angelina Joile as the cover model.

I blogged about it on December 2nd, 2010, and predicted great results.

According to ABC statistics, this issue is the best selling issue of Vogue in the past ten years (possibly the best in the magazines’ history).  It sold an astounding 945,186 copies.  Let’s put this in some perspective.  The next closest best-seller sold 735,671 copies, way back in August of 2002.  Angelina sold 209,515 or 28% more copies than the previous best-seller.

Typically, the big September issues sell the best for Vogue in the June-December rate base sweepstakes.  The 10-year average sale for September issues of Vogue is 554,965.  Thus, Angelina outsold the September average by 390,221 copies or 70% better than the best month typically performs.

The December 2009 issue the year before sold 245,000 copies.  So Angelina boosted sales from the prior year December time slot by 700,186 copies or 286%.

The November 2010 issue, the issue just prior to Angelina, sold 260,237.

WW1 SIP Victorious

Posted by Scott On August - 12 - 2011

Legion Magazine, Canada’s third oldest continuously published magazine (May 1926), published their first ever Special Interest Publication, a bookazine on WW1 last Fall.

It was aggressively priced at $14.95, compared to the normal rate of $5.95.  The issue was perfect bound, oversized trim, UV coated, on 100lb cover stock.  The magazine carried no advertising. The issue sold 5,659 copies on a draw of 12,650 copies, for a 45% sell-through efficiency.  This was 741% better than a normal issue.

Shoppers Drug Mart achieved a 67% sell-through efficiency, Wal Mart achieved a 54% efficiency, Loblaws achieved a 67% efficiency, International News achieved a 59% efficiency.

The new WW2 SIP is scheduled to come out this Fall. Here’s a sneak peak.

New Data

Posted by Scott On August - 11 - 2011

According to a recent bulletin from MagNet (the U.S.-based data provider), newsstand sales in terms of copies sold in the U.S. were down 11.5% in the second quarter of 2011 compared to 2010.  Newsstand revenues in the U.S. are down 9.4%.  Cumulatively, year to date, units are down 10.9% and revenues are off 8.7%.

In Canada, units are down 7.6% for the second quarter, while revenues are down 7%.  Cumulatively, year to date, units are off 6.7% and revenues are down 5.5%.

Here’s hoping the second half brings better news.

New SIP from Flare

Posted by Scott On August - 10 - 2011

FLARE magazine has just created their first ever Special Interest Publication…a Special Runway issue.  The issue will retail for $6.95, compared to the normal $3.99 cover price.

Lisa Tant, Editor-in-Chief/Associate Publisher, FLARE, had this to say:

“This is the first time that Flare has produced a special trend issue. Flare editors started research for this project in February at the start of the international fashion week circuit in New York, and then moved to London, Milan and Paris, before wrapping it up two months later in Toronto. We also chose key players – both Canadian and international trendsetters – to provide a behind-the-scenes look at the fall fashion season. Topics include beauty backstage, the season’s best accessories and European street-style. This exciting package truly is a reader’s ultimate shopping guide for fall.”

Find Family

Posted by Scott On August - 8 - 2011

The Sep/Oct issue of Legion is scheduled to hit newsstands on September 3rd.  This cover feature appeals to the “family tree” geneologists amongst us.  The drop down box device on the royals adds some spice.  And the other circ-boosting devies such as the button, the arrow and the + symbol all help direct the eye to key selling propositions.

Photo Life 35th Anniversary

Posted by Scott On August - 5 - 2011

Photo Life magazine, published out of Quebec City, celebrates their 35th Anniversary this month.  This cover uses a bold type treatment to drive home the message.  Additional sell lines take advantage of the lower left and upper right “real estate”.  Simple and strong.  Look for sales to pop.


About Me

Scott Bullock is a veteran circulation expert with over 38 years experience in both Canada and the United States. He has worked on trade titles such as Publisher’s Weekly, Library Journal, School Library Journal and Small Press in the USA. In consumer magazines, Scott was the Circulation Director for D Magazine (the city magazine of Dallas, Texas), and in Canada he was the Circulation Director for Toronto Life, Fashion, and Canadian Art. From 2000 to 2004, Scott was a partner at Coast to Coast Newsstand Services. Scott has also held the post of VP Sales & Marketing, for CDS Global, Canada. Currently, CoversSell.Com is Scott’s circulation consultancy. Active clients include: Fly Fusion, Canadian Geographic, Canadian House & Home, Canada’s History, Canadian Real Estate Wealth, Canadian Woodworking, Canadian Cycling, Canadian Running, Canadian Scrapbooker, Legion, Harrowsmith, SkyNews, and SuperTrax.



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