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A Comparison Of Two Men's Weekly Magazines

1186 words - 5 pages

A Comparison of Two Men's Weekly Magazines

January saw two publishing giants IPC and EMAP venture into the “no
man’s land” of the magazine industry with the publication of two Men’s
weekly magazines, intelligently titled Nuts (published by IPC) and Zoo
(EMAP). Weekly magazines have traditionally been seen as a women’s
arena, they are too “girly” with titles such as Chat and Heat being
incredibly successful publications for the above two companies. It was
felt that with tabloid newspapers such as The Sun, The Star and The
Daily Sport there was no market for a men’s weekly magazine despite
the surprise runaway success of the monthlies like FHM, Maxim and
Loaded in the 1990s.

IPC and EMAP felt that the risk was worth it and although there has
been a war of words over who thought up the concept first; research
carried out by the two companies revealed a gap in the market for men
who would be happy to purchase a weekly diet of “Beer, breasts and
footy” (presumably in that order) according to Paul Merrill, editor of
Zoo, and the slightly more altruistic “amazing engineering feats”
agenda of Nuts (editor Phil Hilton). In truth although they may have
started off with slightly different agendas (Zoo’s was smuttier to put
it in a nutshell) just over a year later there is little to
differentiate between the two magazines. They even look the same with
their red banner titles and pictures of semi clad women on the front
cover. Although they initially aimed for a combined circulation of 300
000 the last ABC’s showed Nuts had reached a circulation of 290 000
copies a week and Zoo was trailing it slightly with 210 000.
Conventional wisdom now has them neck and neck although we can only be
certain when the next ABCs are published in August this year. Perhaps
then, despite the initial scepticism of industry insiders, the
popularity of these two magazines signify that men really do have a
weekly appetite for “beer, breasts and footie”. Or more cynically as
Rick Poynor, writing for eyemagazine, put it “If these products then
sell, is it because this really is what men want? Or because the
evolving conventions of the global market place have engineered public
taste to respond to this rubbish?” Whether they are rubbish or not;
circulation is rising and although Nuts is winning the circulation
game at present both magazines are incredible similar.

In the 23-31 March issue Nuts promises to tell us why “Jennifer
Ellison!!” is “Britain’s hottest footie fan!” (The answer may lie in
the fact that she poses topless) as well as a free magazine containing
semi naked “50 sexiest footballers wives 2005”. Zoo depicts a bikini
clad “Blimey, I say blimey, its Nikki Sanderson!” (who surprisingly
does not appear topless) and the “12 Hottest Hollyoaks babes ever!”
(Who do). Both magazines are dominated by a...

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