The sales of monthly golf magazines continue to paint a dreary picture of the public’s current lack of interest in the sport.
Golf World, for so long the market leader, has plummeted to just over 60,000 copies according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulation figures for the first six months of 1999. That total is some 6,000 down on the magazine’s average monthly sales for the second half of 1998, but owners Emap are hoping that a recent re-launch will stimulate a rise in circulation into the next millennium.
The biggest drop, though, has been suffered by another Emap monthly, the bottom-of-the-range Fore! which averaged only around 50,000 copies over the first half of the year – 9,000 down on the last six months of 1998.
There has, however, been some cheer for Emap with Today’s Golfer improving by around 2,000 to 63,000 copies a month while brand leader Golf Monthly, which is owned by IPC and enjoys bulk sales of 11,500 copies, has made similar progress, rising to 73,000.
The Player, the free bi-monthly publication from UK Golf, now has an’ABC’ of 63,000 while the two-year-old Golf International, a privately-owned bi-monthly, is expected to be in a position to declare a figure by the end of the year.
The lack of growth in this sector, though, is not deterring newcomers from the party and another monthly magazine is due to hit the shops next spring. A dummy for the as-yet unnamed, up-market consumer title, which will also be sold in France, Germany and Sweden, is currently being prepared for presentation to the golf trade, advertising agencies, media buyers and focus groups by London-based Evolution Publishing.