Covers Sell

Covers Sell

Ferocious Results

Posted by Scott On April - 6 - 2011

Back in July it was brought to our attention that two competing Outdoor Lifestyle publications, Outdoor Canada and Ontario Out of Doors, were both featuring covers with Bears.  We invited our readers to vote on the covers.

See original post here:

Of the 465 votes cast, 291 or 63%  opted for the Ontario Out of Doors black bear cover, while Outdoor Canada’s grizzly bear received 174 votes or 37%.

So, how did consumers vote with their wallets?

A few important facts:

  • Outdoor Canada is a national title, while Ontario Out of Doors is regional
  • Outdoor Canada has a frequency of 4  per year, plus 2 SIPs, for a total of 6, while Ontario Out of Doors has a frequency of 8, plus 2 SIPs for a total of 10
  • Outdoor Canada puts more copies on stands, and each individual issue has more time on racks to sell
  • Outdoor Canada went on sale June 21, and came off sale November 8th, a total of 141 days, while Ontario Out of Door went on sale July 12th and came off sale Augutst 9th, a total of 29 days on racks

Therefore, we will need to look at each magazine’s results relative to its own past performance, to measure lift.

Outdoor Canada sold 7,411 copies at a 39.4% sell-through efficiency on their Summer 2010 cover.  In 2009, their Summer issue sold 6,400 copies at a 30.8% efficiency.  Therefors, sales improved by 1,011 copies, or a 15.8% improvement from prior year, with efficiency increasing by 8.6 pts.  That’s impressive.

Patrick Walsh, editor of Outdoor Canada had this to say:  “It’s always rewarding when the choices you make, in terms of cover image, cover lines, subject matter and distribution channels, pay off at the newsstand.  Clearly we hit all the right buttons with this cover.  Our readers loved it.”

Ontario Out of Doors sold 3,068 copies at a 32.3% sell-through efficiency on their July 2010 cover.  In 2009, their July issue sold 3,056 copies at a 39.4% efficiency.  Therefors, sales were down by 12  copies, or essentially unchanged, with efficiency dropping by 7.1pts, due to an increased allotment.

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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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