Covers Sell

Covers Sell

Retailer of the Year

Posted by Scott On May - 19 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

news_green-125x125Magazines Canada announced that Munro’s Books has been named the 2016 Retailer of the Year.

In a Press Release Magazines Canada said:

The Magazines Canada Retailer of the Year Award recognizes the vital role retailers play in the Canadian magazine landscape, and is awarded annually to an outstanding client of Magazines Canada’s distribution service who cultivates this connection between consumers and their Canadian magazines.

The Retailer of the Year Award will be presented at the Magazines Canada reception on Thursday, June 9, 2016 at MagNet: Canada’s Magazine Conference at the Courtyard Toronto Downtown at 475 Yonge St. in Toronto.

Co-owner Ian Cochran, along with Sarah Frye, Carol Mentha and principal owner Jessica Walker, was pleased to add the Retailer of the Year award to another recent accolade from none other than National Geographic: in their 2015 book Destinations of a Lifetime, Munro’s was #3 on a list of their top 10 bookstores in the world.



Boldest Type Treatment Ever

Posted by Scott On May - 17 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

The May/Jun 2016 issue of Canadian Antiques & Vintage is on sale now.

This cover features the boldest type treatment the magazine has ever tried.

Bolder type treatments can help signal that the issue is important.  If you don’t think it is important enough to play up, why would a newsstand browser?

Give it a try.


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Modern Dog Roars

Posted by Scott On May - 11 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

check_mark_125x125The Winter 2015 issue of Modern Dog was a huge success in both Canada and the United States..  In Canada, sales are up 51.4% from the same issue last year!   That’s very impressive. In the USA, sales are up 66%.  At Barnes & Noble, sales were up 80%!

I like the solid colour background (if it works for Cosmo…) and that the focus is on the dog, rather than the owner.

Congratulations to Modern Dog for a great issue!


Winter 2015                                                                                  Winter 2014

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check_mark_125x125The Dec/Jan 2016 issue of Canada’s History has set a new all-time sales record for a regular issue.  This cover sold 7,437 copies, up 16% compared to last year’s issue in this time slot. Plus, we raised the cover price from $6.95 to $7.99, an increase of $1.04 or 15%.

Last year’s Last Spike cover was also an all-time Record Breaker.  It’s pretty tough to do that two years in a row.

That makes 4 of 6 issues in the 2015 year which broke records for their respective time slots.


For the year, Canada’s History posted an increase of 20% more copies sold, with revenues up 24%. Amazing results for a “mature title.”

  • Dec/Jan 2015 (Last Spike) up 35% (Won Gold at 2016 Canadian Cover Awards)
  • Feb/Mar 2015 (Cook) up 69%
  • Jun/Jul 2015 (Northwest) up 41%
  • Aug/Sep (Squid) up 66%  (Won Bronze at 2016 Canadian Cover Awards)
  • Dec/Jan (Battle) up 16% (New All Time Best Seller!)




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Canadian Running On the Move

Posted by Scott On May - 9 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

The May/Jun 2016 issue of Canadian Running is on sale now.  This “cool coloured” issue offers a benefit oriented main sell, that is presented with a bold type treatment, and using the best real estate to deliver it.

The overall feel is clean and uncluttered while still having a total of 8 hooks worked in.

Look for this one to sell.


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Atomic Ranch has New Look

Posted by Scott On May - 6 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

thenandnow_125x125One of my favorite magazines in the Homes category is a magazine called Atomic Ranch.  Their tag line:  Mid Century Marvels, gets to the nub of what the magazine’s editorial focus has been.  The magazine was recently sold by the original founders to Engaged Media, Inc.

The new management has come out with their first “Special Issue”, which is called “The Renovation Guide”, and is it ever impressive.  The magazine is 134 pages thick, and is packed with before and after shots of six recently renovated homes.

The magazine’s cover, and interior layouts have been redesigned to be much less quirky, and more akin to what you’d find in Dwell.  It appears that they want to broaden the appeal of this niche magazine so that it not only appeals to the purists, but to anyone with an eye to modern design.

The magazine retails for $14.99 in Canada.  I urge you to pick up a copy.

2106 Spring



2016 Spring2015 Winter (Small)2015 Summer (Small)2015 Spring (Small)

Horse Canada May/Jun 2016

Posted by Scott On May - 5 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

The May Jun 2016 issue of Horse Canada will hit newsstands on May 9th 2016.

We managed to work in a total of 10 hooks overall, yet still end up with a cover that has a poster-like quality to it.

Benefits, Benefits, Benefits, is the what this magazine offers their  loyal readership.

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Modern Cat on the Prowl

Posted by Scott On May - 4 - 2016ADD COMMENTS


check_mark_125x125I’ll bet you didn’t know that Modern Cat  magazines is Canadian.  This title is perfect bound, has glossy covers, and it is nice and thick. Canadians should take pride that this home-grown title is also posting some eye-popping sales in the USA too.

Modern Cat is published twice a year, and retails for $5.95.

Here in Canada, the Fall/Winter 2015 issue sold thru at an impressive 42%, and sales were up by 26.7% from prior year! Their Spring/Summer 2015 issue sold thru at a solid 36%, and sales were up 50%!

In the USA, the Fall/Winter issue sold-thru at  33%, and sales were up 45%.  While the Spring/Summer 2015 issue sold-thru at an impressive 38%, and sales were up by 125%! Extremely impressive!

The covers are fun, and well made, with good use of the important selling space, nice starbursts, with benefit-oriented sell lines.


FallWinter 2015SpringSummer 2015


Vancouver Magazine on a Roll

Posted by Scott On April - 29 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

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


Beaver with Attitude

Posted by Scott On April - 21 - 2016ADD COMMENTS

The Jun/Jul 2016 issue of Canada’s History is going to feature two covers…one for Quebec to Newfoundland, and another for the rest of Canada.

The original plan was to go with a classic military history cover, which almost always works well for Canada’s History.  But after reading the draft copy of Roy MacGregor’s article (on the essence of being Canadian), the team decided it too would have great appeal as a cover feature. Plus, we could have fun doing an unconventional cover, featuring an illustration.

A tip of the cap to the team:  Melony Ward, Publisher, Mark Reid, Editor, James Gillespie, Art Director, Karen Simpson, Design Consultant, and Danielle Chartier, Circulation Manager.

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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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