Media Moves

Biz magazines see drop in revenue, ad pages in 2007

January 16, 2008

Posted by Chris Roush

The 17 business magazines that published in 2007 saw a 2.1 percent decline in ad revenue and a 5.7 percent decline in ad pages, according to data from the Magazine Publishers of America analyzed Wednesday by Talking Biz News.

In comparison, the total magazine industry reported a 6.1 percent increase in ad revenue and just a 0.6 percent decline in ad pages. It’s the second year in a row in which business magazines underperformed the industry.

The business magazine industry reported ad revenue of $1.855 billion, down from ad revenue of $1.895 billion in 2006. Ad pages fell to 21,092 from 22,375.9 in 2006.

The data includes revenue and ad pages from Conde Nast Portfolio, which launched in 2007, and Business 2.0, which Time Inc. shut down in 2007.

The best performers for the year were Fast Company, The Economist and Barron’s. The worst performers were PC Magazine, Fortune Small Business and BusinessWeek.

The EconomistFast Company’s ad revenue rose 26.3 percent to $35.4 million, and its ad pages rose 20.6 percent to 497.29 during last year. The Economist saw its ad revenue rise 24 percent to $104.8 million and its ad pages rise 8.5 percent to 2,364.06. Barron’s reported a 16.4 percent increase in ad revenue to $62.5 million and a 9.1 percent increase in ad pages to 1,523.91.

Meanwhile, PC Magazine’s ad revenue fell 28.9 percent to $82.4 million and its ad pages dropped 32.4 percent to 1,022.71. Fortune Small Business reported a 16.8 percent decline in ad revenue to $51.2 miliion and a 13.8 percent drop in ad pages to 477.46. BusinessWeek’s ad revenue fell 12.9 percent to $270.5 million, and its ad pages dropped 18.2 percent to 2,243.71.

The two other big business magazines reported mixed results. Forbes saw a 7.9 percent increase in ad revenue to $369.3 million and a 4.8 percent drop in ad pages to 3,233.78. Fortune, however, reported a a 10.5 percent decline in ad revenue to $269.4 million and a 17.3 percent decrease in ad pages to 2,376.37.

If you took Business 2.0 — which stopped publishing after the October issue — out of the totals, ad revenue would have fallen just 1 percent, and ad pages would have been down just 4.3 percent.

All of the data is available here.

The 17 magazines used to compile this analysis are: Barron’s, Black Enterprise, Business 2.0, BusinessWeek, Conde Nast Portfolio, The Economist, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Forbes, Fortune, Fortune Small Business, Inc., Kiplinger’s, Money, PC Magazine, Smart Money and Wired.

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