IPC says Mizz can bounce back after more teenage depression

Mizz can return to growth despite suffering the biggest fall overall in the teen sector, publisher IPC insisted this week.

Sales of Mizz fell 22.6 per cent to 100,298 year-on-year, and the title recorded its sixth consecutive periodonperiod fall in sales.

Sarah Fisher, publishing director at IPC Connect, said: “With launches coming directly at you, with a high level of marketing activity and a number of people choosing to have a yo-yo pricing strategy, Mizz has been impacted. We’re going to be looking at how we can turn that around.

“Mizz can return to growth and the reason I know is I’ve worked on this title for a good period of time and I’ve done it before.”

The younger girls’ teen market posted a set of disappointing results overall, with Shout declining 16.2 per cent to 84,600.

However, Cosmo Girl! bucked the trend and rocketed up the sales chart after an aggressive marketing and pricing campaign.

The National Magazine Company title, which relaunched in a smaller format last year, put on 39.6 per cent sales year-on-year to 198,324.

Publisher Judith Secombe said: “Our ambitions for the title are still quite aggressive. We would like to be number two or number one in this market.

The gap between us and Bliss is smaller than it has ever been.”

Alfie Lewis, publisher of It’s Hot and Top of the Pops magazine, said Cosmo Girl! had achieved impressive results in a difficult market but warned the price increase could have an affect on future sales. “It got them where they wanted to be, but now it’s just gone back up to £2, it remains to be seen whether they can sustain that kind of growth,” he said.

Lewis: believes price increase could affect sales of CosmoGIRL!

Sugar, which sold 291,794, fell 9.2 per cent, despite holding on to the number one spot for the 10th year running. A5-sized Bliss fell 7.1 per cent.

Teenage weekly Sneak and the monthly It’s Hot, which launched last year, were the only other titles to show an increase, up 20.4 per cent and 12 per cent respectively.

While Top of the Pops magazine dropped marginally, Smash Hits! slipped 21.2 per cent, falling behind TV Hits, It’s Hot and J-17.

Stephen Palmer, Emap managing director of pop, said the decision to discontinue cover-mounts “and the nose dive of the pop market which took place over the autumn has given us a bit of a double whammy. We are thinking about how we’re positioning the magazine, what the package should be and how often we should gift.”

By Sarah Boden

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