Private Frazer’s Doomed Magazines

January 26, 2012

We’re saved!

Filed under: consumer magazines,figures,Future Publishing — privatefraser @ 10:28 am

Lots of coverage today for ‘tablet editor-in-chief’ Mike Goldsmith of Future’s announcement that they made $1 million in just over 3 months of launching all 65 of their magazines on Apple’s Newsstand. The key figures are:

  • 75,000 subscriptions gained
  • 40 percent of orders are for subscriptions
  • 9.3 million free container apps downloads
  • 8.5 million free issues
  • 4.3 million opt-ins for push messages

This has led to general rejoicing all round.

Obviously, it’s unlike me to be curmudgeonly, but let’s have a wee look at these numbers.

  • First off – $1million of revenue in 104 days gives us around $3.5 million over a full year. That’s £2.25 million against Future’s revenue last year of £141 million.
  • 75,000 subscriptions against 9.3 million downloads is under 1% conversion. If subs are 40% of sales, then total unit sales must be around 200,000, which nudges just over 2% conversion.
  • $1 million is just over $15,000 per title on average
  • If the total sales are around 200,000, then the average sale value must be around $5 (which, actually, isn’t bad).

Two more points:

Many of the 75,000 subs are short-term and cost only £0.69 regularly, so Goldsmith cautions that subscriber count could go down as well as up and not all subscribers are high-value. [So where is the average $5 value coming from?]

All but three of Future’s iPad titles – T3, Guitarist Deluxe and Tap! – are page-turner magazine replicas. But Goldsmith said: “ If I did a T3 on every one of future’s 65 titles, I’d bankrupt the company. ”

And one quote that we can all agree with:

 “Print circulations are declining – we are not going to get them back up – iPad is helping. The genie is out of the bottle, so we need to embrace it.”

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1 Comment »

  1. […] A small aside: last month Future made a big song and dance about having generated 75,000 subscriptions from the Apple newsstand. […]

    Pingback by We’re saved! (correction) « Private Frazer’s Doomed Magazines — February 20, 2012 @ 9:35 am | Reply


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