Thinking of Starting a Lifestyle Magazine

The UK market for men’s and women’s lifestyle magazines is going through a highly dynamic period; there have been many major launches and much corporate activity in recent years, which has had an impact on the overall market.

The improved performance has best women’s lifestyle blogs been due in large part to a dramatic resurgence of the men’s lifestyle market, prompted by the launch in early 2004 of the two weekly magazines Zoo and Nuts. However, the women’s sector has also shown a robust improvement, with a 10% increase in consumer expenditure during 2004.

Original consumer research into magazine readership and attitudes which was commissioned by Key Note, available through and undertaken in August 2005 revealed that a third of all adults are loyal magazine readers, buying the same magazine every week or month.

17% prefer to browse the retail shelves, choosing a title according to what interests them in a particular issue. Nearly one in five (17%) are regular readers of specialist magazines and one in ten say that they find the advertisements in such magazines of particular interest.
Slightly fewer than one in five (18%) say that, although they do not buy magazines, they enjoy looking at them. Around one in five (19%) claim to have no interest at all in magazines, and one in ten say that they are too busy to read them.

Despite the recent growth in the magazine market, respondents are rather more likely to say that they now read magazines less than they did 5 years ago (at 19%) than they are to say that they read them more (at 13%).

Overall, the consumer research suggests that it is consumers in the 45 to 54 age group who are the most resistant to magazines; since they are a growing population segment, this is something that could be profitably addressed by the industry.

The pattern of dynamic launch activity that has characterised the market over the past 2 years is likely to continue at least in 2006, but this does bring the possibility of overcrowding in the market the effects of which have been seen during 2005, with several new launches in both the men’s and the women’s market either struggling or having closed altogether.

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