Pamco: Monthly mags fare better than weeklies under lockdown with some big audience gains

New audience figures show a few magazine brands grew their reach substantially during the Covid-19 pandemic, while many saw decline.

Most weekly titles struggled with the change in the market brought about by the UK lockdown, the figures from Pamco show, but celebrity magazines Hello! and OK! both bucked this trend and grew their audiences.

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Hello! grew its total brand reach by 28% to 12.2m, the largest reach among the weekly magazine brands. But Woman’s reach fell by 30%, the Radio Times by 19%, The Week by 12% and Country Life by 10%.

Monthly magazine titles were less affected by the lockdown, with roughly half recording growth in their total brand reach.

Vogue and Tatler were up by more than a third (35% and 36% respectively), but Elle fell by a quarter (26%) and Harper’s Bazaar by 22%, while top-selling women’s monthly Cosmopolitan was down by 11%.

By far the biggest overall gain was made by Esquire, which more than tripled its total brand reach (up by 259%).

BBC Good Food, a paid-for monthly, grew its total brand reach by 23% to 15.8m, the largest reach of any title.

Pamco figures combine a print readership survey with Comscore digital audience estimates for a given month to come to a total de-duplicated brand reach figure. The figures in this report are monthly.

Comscore figures for March together with readership survey figures for the year to the end of March have been compared with those for November 2019 and the year to the end of December.

Weekly magazine brands (inc. Comscore for March 2020)
TBR = Total Brand Reach

Magazine brand TBR (000) Phone (000) Tablet (000) Desktop (000) Print (000) TBR % change
Hello! 12,181 9,523 1,336 577 1,633 28%
Radio Times 8,133 5,534 651 1,221 1,432 -19%
OK! 6,448 4,577 318 220 1,797 7%
Time Out FREE 3,884 2,678 175 566 895 -5%
Closer 2,513 1,732 174 47 787 -9%
Heat 2,134 1,432 128 55 607 -7%
Take a Break 1,756 42 20 1,715 -1%
Grazia 1,343 871 87 91 419 -8%
Private Eye (fortnightly) 1,105 1,105 -2%
The Big Issue 1,066 11 8 1,047 -6%
The Week 858 201 29 213 507 -12%
Chat 798 26 2 10 764 -1%
Woman’s Own 735 41 702
Country Life 709 234 37 72 389 -10%
Woman’s Weekly 655 22 8 1 628 -4%
Woman 556 52 3 5 500 -30%
Pick Me Up! 463 26 2 10 430 -3%
My Weekly 334 30 7 299 8%

Monthly magazine brands (inc. Comscore March 2020):

Magazine brand TBR (000) Phone (000) Tablet (000) Desktop (000) Print (000) TBR % change
BBC Good Food 15,857 12,290 1,406 3,045 628 23%
Cosmopolitan 3,764 2,965 140 295 580 -11%
Good Housekeeping 2,950 1,542 246 358 1,036 -7%
Vogue 2,294 1,304 214 172 796 35%
Esquire (bi-monthly) 2,048 1,701 220 124 55 259%
Vanity Fair 1,590 1,149 217 105 172 18%
Woman & Home 1,371 798 132 74 427 7%
Elle 1,184 719 58 107 346 -26%
GQ 1,109 701 100 163 212 -6%
Men’s Health 965 467 16 85 458 8%
Women’s Health 855 533 18 13 334 22%
Empire 717 372 30 70 282 -13%
Red 628 314 39 56 248 -3%
Tatler 555 389 83 4 102 36%
Harper’s Bazaar 483 249 17 80 157 -22%

Digital only (Comscore March 2020):

Magazine brand Total digital (000) Phone (000) Tablet (000) Desktop (000) Total digital % change
Digital Spy 7,559 6,500 632 603 79%
Wired 4,460 3,531 419 682 437%

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