Motivated Readers, Desirable Demographics Give Parent Publications an Edge

The future looks bright for regional parenting publications. Not only do they enjoy a loyal and motivated following of readers, but they’re also sought after by advertisers looking to tap into the targeted audience.

“We’re definitely reaching a niche market that advertisers are looking for,” according to Jim Snyder, general sales manager for Kapp Advertising, the publisher of About Families in central Pennsylvania. “Our readers are young families that have young children.”

Young Families Are Big Spenders
Readers of parenting publications are in a heavy spending phase of their lives, an additional benefit to advertisers.

“Young families tend to begin reading local parenting publications as they become more involved in their communities,” Tim Bingaman, CEO and president of CVC, said. “They are typically households that make many more consumer goods purchases than average households because they are buying and furnishing homes, and raising families.”

Readers in this genre are different because they are more affluent, educated and younger than traditional print readers, Bingaman said.

Of the 121 CVC-audited parenting publications with a combined circulation of more than three million:

  • 74 percent of readers have college or advanced degrees;

  • 76 percent are 25-44 years old;

  • 78 percent have household incomes of more than $50,000;

  • 20 percent have household incomes of more than $100,000; and

  • Only 27 percent of reader households subscribe to a daily newspaper.

Furthermore, according to CVC readership studies, 76 percent of readers say they frequently purchase products or services from ads seen in their local parenting publication.

Loyal Readers Seek Parenting Advice, Activity Calendars
Built around strong editorial content about kids’ development and health, readers look to articles for advice on raising their families. They’re also interested in finding out about family activities.

“We provide an excellent source of information on local activities happening in our area,” L.J. Corby, publisher of Kern County Family Magazine in Bakersfield, Calif., said. “Our calendar section is the number one reason people pick up the publication.”

Corby said her magazine has a strong shelf-life as parents want information they can refer to throughout the month and as their children grow.

Readers tell publishers of MetroKids in Philadelphia, Penn., that the advertisements are just as important as the editorial.

“Readers say they find the advertising as useful as the editorial,” Darlene Weinmann, general manager of MetroKids, said. “Our ads are relevant to the subject matter. For example, we might run a story on party planning, and then we’ll have an advertising section listing party-related businesses.”

Turnover Is Good for Parenting Advertisers
Jeremy Solomon, vice president of national sales at Parenting Network, a national advertising firm representing more than 90 regional parenting publications, has seen a steady demand for space in regional parenting publications.

Unique to this market, he said, is the constant influx of new parents.

Each day throngs of adults become new parents, and this turnover drives advertisers to constantly market their products and services to new consumers, Solomon said.

“New parents would never have seen advertising in past issues of parenting publications,” Solomon said. “For an advertiser to keep their product in front of parents, it’s a constant struggle. They need to continue promoting to new parents by advertising again, and parenting publications are a great resource for new parents.”

What’s not unique about parenting publications: their need for verified circulation and readership numbers, according to Gary Hibert, vice president of Dominion Parenting Media. Dominion Parenting Media publishes parenting magazines in 13 states with a combined circulation of almost 800,000.

“The audit gives us a clear picture as to our penetration into a particular market,” Hibert said. “It helps to prove our value to the advertisers as a viable avenue that they can trust to reach their targeted audience. The audit is an unbiased feedback that no publication should be without.”

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