Two hundred and thirty-nine new magazines launched in 2011, up 24% from 193 new launches in 2010, according to Mediafinder.com, a tracking service established by Oxbridge Communications, which maintains a database of U.S. and Canadian publications.
The number of magazines that closed decreased year-over-year, according to Mediafinder.com, from 176 in 2010 to 152 in 2011.
The number of business-to-business magazines increased by an even larger percentage, almost doubling from 34 new titles in 2010 to 62; the number of B2B magazines that closed decreased from 47 last year to 38 this year.
Among consumer magazines, 2011's noteworthy new launches included HGTV Magazine, published by Hearst Corp. in partnership with the popular cable channel devoted to real estate sales and renovation. This year also saw the launch of Style.com/Print, a fashion title based on the Condé Nast Web site of the same name.
This year’s prominent closures included Get Married, perhaps reflecting reduced spending on weddings in a difficult economy. Earlier this year, “brides local” magazines that were a print offshoot of brides.com also shuttered. The content from those locals was assimilated online. Brides from Conde Nast remains open.
Both the number of new launches and magazines shuttered in 2011 are down significantly from just a few years ago, when adverse economic conditions took a heavy toll on the industry. According to MediaFinder.com, a total of 596 magazines closed in 2009, while 275 launched that year. In 2008, publishers launched 335 new titles, while 525 closed.
It is easy to see why closures outpaced new launches over the last couple of years. Total consumer magazine ad pages fell from 252,122 in 2006 to 174,403 in 2010, according to separate figures from the Publishers Information Bureau -- a decline of 30.8% in just four years.
In the first nine months of 2011, total ad pages are down 1.2% to 120,719, also per the PIB.