A deluge of subscriptions has hit my mailbox recently. Everything from Rolling Stone, Wired, ESPN, and the Wall Street Journal is delivered daily and/or monthly. The best part? It’s all free. The worst part? These stalwarts of the news world have become magnets for advertising.
Today, I opened my mail and found a brand new copy of Outside Magazine. The August issue features a cover story on Ashton Eaton. The olympic runner, along with athletes like him, are catalogued in a fantastic new article. But like my experience with Wired Magazine, it’s clear why they’re giving it away.
Advertising is the only thing keeping most news and media outlets alive. Subscription rates – at least to hardcopy products – have plummeted. Much like free newspapers rely on local advertisers to pay for the difference, Wired Magazine and periodicals like this are inserting more advertising space than ever. By giving away subscriptions, they can inflate their readership and draw in more exclusive advertising.
Without covers (back/front), Outside Magazine is 116 pages long.
41 pages are dedicated ads (not including partials).
The magazine is 35 percent advertising.
Compared to prior examinations, Outside Magazine appears to be far less advertising-based. Unfortunately, many of the ads are contextual (e.g., new products for camping, hiking, and adventure). I didn’t count that style, as it would be less objective. About 10 more pages were dedicated to this article-based marketing, and would’ve made the magazine 44 percent ads.
Being exposed to this amount of advertising can be dire to a frugal budget. Find out how you can take action.