Loaded's 90p price cut could herald men's mags price war

By Alyson Fixter

Relaunched lads’ mag Loaded has revealed the next move in its
campaign to bring readers back to the fold by permanently slashing the
price by a quarter.

From this month, the original men’s monthly will be on the newsstand for £2.50, down from its old price of £3.40.

Publisher IPC claims it will rejuvenate the entire monthly market, which has seen an overall sales drop.

Speculation
that the move could initiate a price war has been fuelled by the fact
that all of Loaded’s most obvious rivals – FHM, Maxim, Bizarre and
Front – saw circulation drops in the past year, although Maxim overtook
Loaded in sales for the first time.

Loaded publishing director
Niall McKinney said: “Following the wholehearted approval young men
have given to our relaunch, now is the time to bring new readers to
Loaded with a new price.

“The sales decline of the monthly men’s
market in the last five years has shown us that all the magazines in
the sector need to deliver better value to consumers.

“The men’s
weeklies, led by Loaded’s stablemate Nuts, have offered a completely
new price point – with success that has been well chronicled.

“Loaded
now creates an alternative price point for this young male audience
which our exhaustive research shows they will warmly welcome.” Greg
Gutfeld, editor of Maxim, said there would be no price cutting from his
title in response to the IPC move.

“The price cut has made Loaded kind of a cross between a monthly and a weekly,” he said. “I call it a meekly.

“I
think there probably will be some uplift in sales, but I suspect it
will be a short-term thing. Once they realise nothing’s changed, men
are not going to carry on buying it because it’s cheaper.

“That’s not someone who likes a magazine, that’s someone who’s broke.”

He
added: “Maybe they should start selling five for the price of one and
you could use it to stack under table legs or mop up cat sick.”

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