AARP The Magazine: A Rare Success Story in Modern Publishing

A Blast of Good News from the Publishing Industry

February 5, 2016 · Share via Email LinkedIn

Defying industry trends, AARP The Magazine set a personal best: an audience of 35,953,000.

That’s an audience 67% larger than the 2014–2015 season of Sunday Night Football, an average of 21.3 million viewers, and 101% bigger than the huge network TV hit Empire, which drew an average of 17.3 million viewers.

Since it was first measured by MRI in Fall 2003, AARP The Magazine has grown overall in by 11,669,000 readers, which is more than the total population of Greece. That growth is greater than the current total readership of 88% of MRI-measured magazines. AARP The Magazine stands alone as No.1 among the 50+ audience.

While we’re used to hearing that “print is in decline,” here is a property that’s doing just fine, thank you.

50+ Demo Dominates Consumer Spending

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While much of the media world (not surprisingly) has gone gaga for millennials, some really interesting things are happening in the over-50 demo. It’s no secret that the over-50 population controls 70% of the country’s disposable income. In fact, for the first time in history, consumers over 50 now make up the majority — 51% — of all consumer spending, according to just-released data from the U.S. Consumer Expenditure Survey. This might come as a surprise to some, since marketers have traditionally been, and continue to be, focused on younger consumers.

As marketers realize that over-50 consumers are an essential component to most marketing plans, many brands should be looking for an effective outlet to reach this demo. AARP The Magazine is the way to connect with this highly-engaged audience. Plus, as more 50-plus consumers embrace digital media, AARP is there as well, offering multichannel access. In fact, mobile traffic sources accounted for 50% of unique visitors and 30% of page views to in November 2015.

AARP’s Readers Are Actively Engaged

While AARP The Magazine continues its consistent growth, there’s also strong evidence that AARP’s readers are increasingly engaged with our editorial content. This is not surprising, as our editorial team specializes in creating valuable content for every life stage of the 50+ consumer. In fact, according to MRI research, AARP’s audience reads four out of four issues, which is twice the amount that reads the other top 10 total reach magazines.

A Rare Publishing Success

All of this makes AARP The Magazine a rare success story in modern publishing. While other titles are losing readers left and right, here is a largely unheralded powerhouse in print and digital that provides unrivaled access to the over-50 demo for advertisers.

With stats like these, AARP The Magazine now stands alone when it comes to reaching the most important demographic in today’s marketplace. That’s not just great news for AARP, it’s also great news for advertisers too.