by Kenneth Richard | The Impressionist

Fashion magazines have had a tough go of it over the course of the last several years. Pundits have taken a swing, forecasters have predicted their demise, and bloggers have championed their death. The advent of the device you are reading this on has had something to do with that. The Impressionist has heard this before. “Video Killed the Radio Star” anyone? Talk to someone who attended this years Cannes Lions, the award show for communications creatives, and you’ll quickly glean that old school is new school. Creatives and advertisers both excited about such archaic medium as direct mail, e-mail, billboards, and print? In the age of digital?  Well . . . yes. Because it works.

Attention is important and one needs to simply compare the average time spent with a fashion publication versus the time spent on a fashion website (ours included) to know magazines aren’t going anywhere.  And recently released circulation numbers by the Alliance for Audited Media speak to just that.

The Impression took a dive into the report which covers the magazine industry as a whole and extrapolated the US women’s fashion publications circulation numbers for the first half of 2014. Turns out that the women’s fashion magazines are up .1%. Nothing to write home about, but any CEO worth their mustard would be bragging about this sign of stability on a quarterly earnings call. You could hear them explain that yes, the newsstand sales have declined as that market truncates, but those losses are being offset by digital issues, plus newsstand isn’t that big a part of their business anyway. Plus if Lucky’s new move is any indication, magazines have more up their sleeves.

As far as newsstands waning influence, The Impression is actually in love with the idea of less of it when it comes to cover layouts. Subscription covers are more emotionally emoting, less type, less cluttered, and less sex quizzes.

So here’s to the new underdogs, whose reports of their death were greatly exaggerated, the print publishers. With their staffs (envious), budgets (envious), and distribution (envious). And as envious as I am, I wish them much continued success and looking forward to flipping through their September issues.


As reported by: Alliance for Audited Media 
Allure Beckham March 2014ALLURE2%
Glamour CoverGLAMOUR1%
Harpers Bazaar coverHARPER’S BAZAAR5%
InStyle CoverINSTYLE1%
Nylon CoverNYLON2%
Seventeen coverSEVENTEEN.5%
Teen Vogue CoverTEEN VOGUE1%
Town & Country CoverTOWN & COUNTRY5%
Vanity-Fair-usa-may-2014-cover-the-impressionVANITY FAIR0%
W magazine CoverW0%



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