Useful, accessible information on circulation and audience development for magazine publishing professionals.

Dec 18th 2014
is the 352nd day of the year and there are 13 days remaining until the end of the year.

Hollywood stars say Sony's cancellation of The Interview, is a "victory" for hackers...

Militants storm a remote village in north-eastern Nigeria, killing at least 33 people and kidnapping at least 100...

World leaders welcome an agreement between the US and Cuba to end more than 50 years of hostility... Marco Rubio says it is a terrible idea...

Australian police say Sydney cafe attacker Man Haron Monis did not have a gun licence, though they initially told PM Tony Abbott he did...

Obesity 'could be a disability' - EU.
1886 – Ty Cobb, baseball player (d. 1961);
1888 – Gladys Cooper, actress (d. 1971);
1935 – Jacques Pépin, cook;
1968 – Casper Van Dien, actor;
1978 – Katie Holmes, actress.

2013 – Ronnie Biggs, criminal (b. 1929);
2008 – Mark Felt, Deep Throat (b. 1913);
1968 – Joan Tabor, actress (b. 1932).

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It is awards season, so let's hand out the year-end Rumination Awards! Click here to read or click here for audio feed.


To Share, Or Not to Share; It's Always A Question... Click here to read.

'For whatever reason, Harrods Magazine showed up in my iTunes app folder today' says D.B. Hebbard at, the man that knows all media that is digital! He says 'the digital magazine app for the iconic London department store goes all the way back to 2012' but 'the update was issued a month ago, so I’m still scratching my head' and the reason for the head scratching is it took a month to show up.

Anyway, does he like the update, click here to learn more.

'The Daily Mail’s advertising branch will be restructured to better serve brands and advertisers with the sales teams merging under group advertising director, Rosemary Gorman’s command' reports John McCarthy at

It will all happen next year, not surprising since there are only 13 days left in 2014, but reports Mr. McCarthy the merger 'will be supplemented by the establishment of a new travel category vertical team which will bring together all aspects of the Mail’s extensive travel offering for advertisers.'

Rosemary Gorman started her advertising career in the hedonistic 1980s as a graduate trainee in media, subsequently making the move into full-service agencies Geers Gross and Mc Cann-Erickson, where she rose to hold board level positions. For more, click here.

'Richard C. Hottelet, the last living member of Edward R. Murrow‘s team known as “Murrow’s Boys,” has died' reports Chris Ariens at

Mr. Hottelet died yesterday aged 97 at his home in Wilton, Connecticut. “Richard C. Hottelet was the ultimate CBS News reporter,” said Jeff Fager, CBS News chairman and executive producer of “60 Minutes.”

The Murrow’s Boys were the CBS broadcast journalists most closely associated with Edward R. Murrow during his years at the network, most notably the

years before and during World War II.

Of the original Boys, Hottelet would end up having the longest career at CBS, joining the network in 1944 and continuing to work at the network until 1985. He was the last surviving member of the original group.

Mr. Hottelet was born in 'Brooklyn on September 22, 1917. He attended Berlin University in 1938, where he began his journalism career with United Press.' For more of Mr. Ariens's report, click here.

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Dec 17th 2014
is the 351st day of the year and there are 14 days remaining until the end of the year.

Technology giant Apple says it cannot currently sell products online in Russia because the rouble's value is too volatile for it to set prices...

The New York premiere of The Interview is cancelled...

John Ellis Bush to explore White House bid.
1928 – Marilyn Beck, journalist (d. 2014);
1930 – Armin Mueller-Stahl, actor;
1936 – Pope Francis;
1947 – Wes Studi, actor;
1973 – Paula Radcliffe, runner.

1187 – Pope Gregory VIII (b. 1100);
1909 – Leopold II of Belgium (b. 1835);
2011 – Kim Jong-il, politician (b. 1941).

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I love Gayle King; Gayle King must dye! And Another Thing! Click here to read or click here for audio feed.


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First it was a daily, then it went weekly, and now, sadly, 'tis no more. 'Staff past and present have lamented the loss of a daily-turned-weekly after its last print issue was published' says David Sharman at

The Evening Post as it was then called started back in 1965 as a daily and switched to weekly in 2009 'at which point it also dropped the ‘Evening’ from its name' says Mr. Sharman. For more, click here.

Time Inc. has partnered with Coinbase, the most popular bitcoin wallet, to become the first major magazine publisher to accept bitcoin payments. Fortune, Health, This Old House and Travel + Leisure, now accepting payments by bitcoin as Time Inc. joins a growing list of businesses, such as, Google and Expedia, partnering with Coinbase to integrate bitcoin into their customer payment options.

Coinbase, founded in June of 2012 is based in San Francisco, Calif., and is a bitcoin wallet and platform where merchants and consumers can transact with the digital currency bitcoin. “For a major publisher like Time Inc. to embrace bitcoin sends an important message to both its readers and to the broader media community,” said Brian Armstrong, CEO & co-founder of Coinbase. It will be very interesting to see how many people choose this payment method. Currently 1BTC is the equivalent of US$321.00 - and a one year subscription to Fortune can be had for US$19.99 or BTC 0.062274143.


Michael Sebastian at reports 'Time and People... are reducing their print circulation guarantees to advertisers.' Time is removing 250,000 copies but People just 50,000 per issue. Notes Michael 'Time will promise advertisers a rate base of 3 million copies per issue, meaning it will deliver an average of 3 million copies for each issue over a six-month period. People's rate base will decline to 3,425,000 copies per issue.' For more, click here. Meanwhile Hearst is increasing the frequency of TrendingNY - for that, click here.

'The other shoe is dropping at The New York Times' says Alexandra Steigrad at The publication wants to reduce the newsroom staff by 100 and offered generous packages for people to leave.. or else risk being pushed. Christine Haughney who reports on media is one of those leaving, but now it seems the cull is about to continue. 'Staffers at the Times were sent an e-mail on Tuesday from the Newspaper Guild of New York indicating that layoffs would take place Tuesday and Wednesday' says Alexandra. For more, click here.

Haymarket Business
Media Managing Director Macken to step down.

Southern Living
Makes Two
Editorial Changes.


It will be no surprise that 'New York Magazine has issued an apology' after it published a story that proved to be completely false. It is true notes Jason Abbruzzese at that 'Jessica Pressler, who penned the article, labeled the reports of Islam's wealth and stock-picking acumen as rumor' but then failed to see if any part of the rumor was actually fact. It all fell apart when ' the New York Observer interviewed Islam, who admitted that he had fabricated the story. The Washington Post also debunked it' says Mr. Abbruzzese.

This story follows on from another story of late that appeared in Rolling Stone magazine where again, fact checking was an issue. For more on Jason's story click here.

This story was written by Roy Beagley (on right, and the picture has not been photoshopped in any way, shape, size or form - honest honors m'lud!)

Good News - 'the number of magazines launched over the last two years increased from 185 new titles in 2013 to 190 new titles in 2014' says Erik Sass at

Bad News - 'over the same period the number of magazines that ceased publication also increased, from 56 last year to 99 this year.'

For more of the good, and the bad, click here for more of Erik's holiday cheer - or not.

Dec 16th 2014
is the 350th day of the year and there are 15 days remaining until the end of the year.

At least 126 people have been killed in a Taliban assault on an army-run school in the Pakistani city of Peshawar...

The rouble crashes to new record low...

John Ellis Bush to explore White House bid...

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has officially announced its 2015 inductees. The late Lou Reed, Green Day, punk disciples Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, soul legend Bill Withers, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Double Trouble, and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band are to be inducted.
1485 – Catherine of Aragon (d. 1536);
1899 – Noël Coward, actor (d. 1973);
1941 – Lesley Stahl, journalist;
1950 – Claudia Cohen, journalist (d. 2007);
1978 – John Morris, curler.

2007 – Dan Fogelberg, singer (b. 1951);
1997 – Nicolette Larson, singer (b. 1952);
2013 – Harold Camping, evangelist (b. 1921);

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I love Gayle King; Gayle King must dye! And Another Thing! Click here to read or click here for audio feed.


To Share, Or Not to Share; It's Always A Question... Click here to read.


'The River Group is set to launch Healthy magazine on newsstands in the UK and Republic of Ireland' reports 'Nicola Murphy, Chief Executive Officer at The River Group, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Healthy magazine is launching on the newsstand.

“This move is entirely fitting for the UK’s no.1 health and wellbeing title for women".' The magazine has been published since 1999 but this is the first time on the newsstands. For more, click here.

'Vice Media chief exec Shane Smith said the company is exploring a number of options in 2015' says Keith J. Kelly at the New York Post and the main reason for that, possibly the only reason for that is 'a recent $500 million infusion' of cash.

The cash came from A&E Networks and Technology Crossover Ventures. Keith J. Kelly notes Shane 'Smith said he thinks mobile is the future, but conceded that the market is still evolving and few know how to monetize it' - we are sure he will give it the good old college try! For more, click here.

Alexandra Steigrad at says Condé Nast's move downtown, where according to Petula Clark the lights are much brighter has seen 'a rising number of complaints.' Editors are not happy with the 'tightly secured building' being quite so "tightly secured" as it seems to cause problems 'receiving hand-delivered packages and food deliveries.' There is the additional problem of tourists gawking at the new building, the highest in the nation and designed to draw, apart from residents of the tower - TOURISTS. Did we mention the rats? Notes Alexandra ' stories of rats leaving droppings on the desks of editors or nibbling on couture made everyone — including insiders — chuckle. The thought of a rat scurrying past the desk of Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour, who “probably gave it side eye,” made for a hilarious picture, said one Condé Naster.' For more, click here.

The weekly news magazine is closing its comments section. Says Ben Frumin, editor-in-chief of 'we have a deep respect for the intelligence and opinions of our readers' - which is always a good thing, he continues - 'we want the work we do to drive more and more smart and vibrant conversations among thoughtful people from all ideological backgrounds.' So sounds like a comments section is a good thing... stimulates those "smart and vibrant conversations" and confirms the "deep respect for the intelligence and opinions of our readers."

So why exactly is this outlet of wit and wisdom being closed down? Says Mr. Frumin 'our industry has changed in recent years, so too has the optimal forum for these conversations. Too often, the comments sections of news sites are hijacked by a small group of pseudonymous commenters who replace smart, thoughtful dialogue with vitriolic personal insults and rote exchanges of partisan acrimony. This small but outspoken group does a disservice to the many intelligent, open-minded people who seek a fair and respectful exchange of ideas in the comments sections of news sites.


It is no longer a core service of news sites to provide forums for these conversations. Instead, we provide the ideas, the fodder, the jumping off point, and readers take it to Facebook or Twitter or Reddit or any number of other places to continue the conversation. That's why we will be closing the comments section on at the end of the year.'

So once again, because of the few, the majority are denied "smart, thoughtful dialogue" to quote Mr. Frumin. For the most part we do not disagree with The Week's decision although perhaps better monitoring of the comments' sections might have worked. Where we do disagree is that the comments of readers, whether it be "smart, thoughtful dialogue" or "vitriolic personal insults and rote exchanges of partisan acrimony" should actually be on a the web site of a news outlet at all.

Call us old-fashioned but the reason we watch the news, read the news and listen to the news from a wide variety of media outlets is to be informed, hopefully informed of the facts. If we wanted to get the opinions of others we would go down to the pub or as Mr. Frumin says

"take it to Facebook or Twitter or Reddit or any number of other places to continue the conversation."

The right decision has been taken, but for the wrong reasons and it will actually be a pleasure to read news at once the comments are all removed so that we can actually get news, and not the unsought opinion of disgusted of Tunbrdige Wells or barmy Barry from Brookfield.

Dec 15th 2014
is the 349th day of the year and there are 16 days remaining until the end of the year.

Australian police say they will maintain central Sydney in lock down "for as long as it takes", as a gunman holds people hostage inside a cafe....

Actor Bill Cosby speaks out for the first time since police open investigation into claims of historical sexual abuse....

Civil rights protest in US capital....

Three prisoners who escaped from the US island prison Alcatraz in 1962 may have made it to land alive, a new study suggests....

Mexico protesters clash with police....

Strikes bring Belgium to standstill....

Police clear final HK protest site.
130 – Lucius Verus, emperor (d. 169);
1921 – Alan Freed, radio host (d. 1965);
1939 – Alan Armstrong, author;
1942 – Dave Clark, drummer;
1979 – Eric Young, wrestler.

1688 – Gaspar Fagel, politician (b. 1634);
1962 – Charles Laughton, actor (b. 1899);
2013 – Harold Camping, evangelist (b. 1921);

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And that would be a lady by the name of Julie Harris who reports was 'formerly CEO of WGSN Group.'

Continues 'prior to joining WGSN, Harris has 15 years’ leadership experience in consumer media, including stints as General Manager of Hachette Filipacchi UK and as Deputy MD of Women’s Media at Emap.' For more, click here.

And that would be Tina Gaudoin who will be the new editor-in-chief.

She will take over from Justine Picardie but Ms. Picardie will continue in her role as editor-in-chief of Harper's Bazaar. For more on this story, click here. And the good news continues to pour out of Town and Country who has done so well they are going to double their frequency next year. For more on that from click here.

The 'quarterly journal that showcases new and established contemporary writers and visual artists' says is to close after the Winter 2014 issue has been completed. Editor-in-chief Karen Mulhallen released a statement after consulting a number of sources saying 'after long and painful negotiations and deliberations for four years... we have jointly decided that Descant magazine in its present form is no longer sustainable.' For more, click here.

We recently received the regular offer from Opera News and this offer, like our old nanny Mary Poppins is practically perfect in every way. '3 Risk-Free Issues' always a vote grabber, a free gift offer of a CD, an involvement device, savings of 68%, and a reply by instruction. We may have died and gone to heaven!

Inside, or the reverse depending on your point of view, 'Free' is mentioned not once, nor twice but four times in as many paragraphs and an excellent re-stating of what we are going to get, or not if we don't reply in ten days. The Free issues are even restated on the reply card. Whoever wrote and designed this should be sent a bag of onions, because they sure as hell know them. It looks good, does all the right things and Opera News mail it regularly, so we can conclude that it works for them. (Click here or on the thumbnail to view larger image.

We received our monthly renewal offer from TV Guide this week, and it does all the right things and looks good, and makes ordering very simple. As with many publications the actual renewal date is not mentioned, something which annoys me as a subscriber, but pleases me as a marketer - can you tell I am a Gemini? IF you click on the image above, you can see what happens at the ordering stage, although this is made as simple as possible. Interestingly, for an online order form, and a renewal form at that, TV Guide offers a Bill Me option.
Here's a good offer from Oracle Magazine for a qualified controlled publication. It has good benefits copy and makes requesting Oracle Magazine easy with a couple of "Subscribe Now" buttons.  There is interesting PS copy offering a new publication for those who might be interested in Java Magazine as well as Oracle. The design is clean, uncluttered and attractive. To view the offer, click here. Not sure why the publisher is only offering six free issues, but given the quality of the promotion there must be a very good reason.

Here is the latest offering from People magazine. Nice personalized outer envelope, and a simple and concise brochure showing good covers and copy that sells the subscription. To order, it's old school, snail mail - no mention of ordering via the web anywhere. Nice package and well done to People for knowing that direct mail via the post office is still a good way to get orders.

Click on the image to see large versions.

Here’s what appears to be an advance renewal offer from Vegetarian Times.  It’s a renewal sweeps – smart idea because the original sub order was placed through PCH.  We’re assuming it’s an advance renewal as only one copy of the subscription has been received thus far.  The offer is a strong one –a 78% saving on the renewal plus a chance to win $25,000 (along with other prizes).  Package includes clever “sweeps” techniques on the outer envelope, an offer deadline and small flyer detailing prizes.  Good job, Vegetarian Times!

Click on the image to see large versions.
We received this double postcard from GQ magazine. The card looks great, has a nice cover and a nice free gift, but also has a rather confusing offer. '24 issues of GQ for only $20.00 - that's 83c (plus 17 cents shipping and handling) per issue; in other words $24.00 then. If you add 83 cents to 17 cents, you get $1.00 which if you then multiply by 24 issues you get $24.00. Click on the image to see large versions.
When my subscription of 'The Week' arrived last week, inside the envelope was an offer for 12 issues of 'The Oldie' magazine. As far as I am aware these magazines are independent of each other, but have a great deal in common.

This is a nice way of promoting a magazine that is probably already known to readers of another magazine and would be fairly cheap to produce and execute. Nice offer. Click on the image for a larger view of the outside and inside.
Always nice to get something from 'The Economist' as they always do things so well.

A free copy of 'The World in 2013' is a nice incentive for the readers among us, and a free tablet cover for the tecchies to boot - which also indirectly pushes the digital version.

The predominant red is great as it screamed "ECONOMIST" as soon as I opened my email. Oh and 69c a copy, they got me! [Click here or on image for large version].
'People' really knows how to use it's house file. Good offer, nice creative and use of personalization.

The offer is strong and the order form is pre-populated - what's not to love?
(Click on the image to see larger size and also the order form page.

This is an interesting offer. On the one hand it pushes newsstand sales, you can save $1.00 if you print out the coupon. However if you clicked on the Save $1.00 link you can also subscribe and get eight issues free.

An offer is an offer,
even though this offer
is not publishing related,
it has ignored basic
promotion rule 1-0-1:
Know Thy Prospect!


To view larger size, click on the above image.

A recent offer from People magazine. It looks simple but a great deal of thought has gone into this offer, not least the cover featured on the tablets.

To view larger size, click on the above image.
Let's state it up front - we know the email at the end of the link is spam. Even so, it is a great example of why some design is a good thing in email promotions - even text only promotions. We cannot believe anyone who got this email would even have got so far a clicking a link! Click here to see the email, which is a screen shot taken from our computer.

Rebecca Sterner wrote on CircSpot on how to set up an autorenewal. It just so happens that today we received our auto renewal for Time. In all honesty we had not planned to renew it, but it is done, and although we could cancel it, $81.00 for 56 issues is not worth the hassle of canceling, so we guess the auto renewal worked... at least in our case.

To view larger size, click on the above image.
A reader looked for something on the Times of London web site, and this popped up while the page they wanted to view was loading. He liked it, took a picture, and sent it to us - thanks Glyn C-R of Buckinghamshire.

To view larger size, click on the above image.

A reader subscribed to Fast Company and paid $10.00 for a subscription. After placing the order, they received an email offering a $5.00 credit if she can get another person to subscribe in the next 6 hours. This seemed like a very clever idea to the the person who sent us the information - and we agree.

To view larger size, click on the above image.

Here's a nice promotion from The Nation.  It's quick to read, offers an invitation to receive exclusive free offers - it's a flattering offer and comes from a credible publication.

It ultimately leads you to a subscription landing page offering 4 free issues (very strong offer) plus attractive subscription prices and a choice of format - print or online access.
The promotion is clean and uncluttered with enough enticing benefits to attract readership.

Click on the image above for a larger version.


We act as if “native advertising” is something new, so what is it and how should we best use it... an introduction to "native advertising!" Click here to read.

Virtually all marketing campaigns are most successful when they employ a multi-channel approach to a targeted audience... even in the "all-digital" world. Click here to read more....

On October 16th last year, a new regulation from the FCC went into effect. Ronen Ben-Dror asks how does the FCC rule affect you in the B2B environment? Click here to read more....

The Interactive Advertising Bureau found that more than a third of web traffic is fraudulent and BPA says only 40% of ads measured are actually viewable, but how much of a problem is this? Click here to read more....

Telemarketers are well aware of the Personal Identifier Question and recent changes in rules regarding the PIQ have caused somewhat of a debate in the industry. Ronen Ben-Dror of Blue Valley Telemarketing takes a look at what gives. Click here to read more....

An accurate call list is an extremely important aspect in waging a successful telemarketing campaign. Scrubbing the list is the responsibility of the publishing company and the telemarketing agency. Click here to read more....

Customers of telemarketing services often commission work without undertaking even the most elementary checks. What should the informed customer look for when choosing an outbound telemarketing agency? Click here to read,

Publishers need to address the USPS's suggested increase before it is too late. Click here to read,

Evaluating how a campaign is working while agents are in the process of communicating with current or potential clients, live monitoring is an essential tool. Can companies afford to waste all those efforts on a careless approach to monitoring the campaign? Of course not. Click here to read more....

Social media channels today are playing an interesting role in the future and the publishing world now views social media as a positive exchange with subscribers, so To Tweet or Not to Tweet, That Tis the Question Click here to read more....

How Well Do You Know Your Audience? The more you know, says Ronen Ben-Dror, this could eliminate the battle of qualifying leads. Click here to read more....

Free magazines are different from "Controlled" as we all know, but the distinction is becoming less and less relevant to advertisers. Click here!

Sending out a direct mail campaign requires a good lettershop operation... Karen Tyson explains....

Cash flow is probably the most important resource any business has. Benefit from Peter's insight and knowledge. Click here to read this exclusive article.

How to manage a telemarketing campaign and make it work for you. Karen Tyson explains....

While all major publishers maintain marketing databases, it is just as important for small publishers too. Pam would argue it’s more important than ever to maintain a database as a tool for identifying, developing and implementing strategy. Click here!

Circulation can be an asset on a sales call. Peter Lenahan explains what to do, and as importantly not what to do in this exclusive article. Click here!

For years the concept of earning and deferring income has confused many, but it is not that difficult. Get the facts behind earned and deferred income from Peter Sangiorgio. Click here to read more....

Getting a direct mail package printed takes advance planning. Karen Tyson has some thoughts and ideas as to how to make this sometimes daunting prospect easier to handle... Karen Tyson explains....

Enjoy and benefit from this exclusive article for written by Peter Lenahan who explains why the circulation staff keep the sales force motivated, and how that benefits all concerned. Click here!

Reader's response: One of most intelligent articles I have ever read on ad sales and the all-important relationship with circulation. Well said. Harry S, Sacramento, Calif - via email.

Businesses that put their customers front and center will ultimately win and the secret to successfully scaling CRM practices into any large organization is to really understand your markets. Benefit from Pam's years of experience and learn how to segment your file and become a success. Click here for Pam's insight.

To develop a realistic circulation forecast based upon current economic, industry, and company conditions is part of any circulation director's job. Benefit from the accountant's view and read Peter Sangiorgio's 5 Simple Tips to consider when developing a Circulation Budget. Click here for Peter's insight.

Rebecca Sterner is one of the most respected people in the audience development job function. Now you can benefit from Rebecca's knowledge on Setting Up an Auto Renewal Program. Click here.

When executing a direct mail program, you should give lots of thought to the requirements of merge/purge. This could end up saving you a great deal of money, not forgetting making your life a great deal easier. Karen Tyson explains...

5 Mistakes You Should Avoid When Planning Your Audience Development Efforts by Kinjal Husges. Click here to read more....