How a Magazine Can Get Lots of Ads and Make Lots of Money

The Sunday New York Times includes The New York Times Magazine, published every week with lots of good journalism. Eleven times a year the Sunday Times also includes T: The New York Times Style Magazine. The Style Magazine covers Women’s Fashion, Men’s Fashion, and Travel twice a year, plus issues on Design, Culture, Design & Luxury, The Greats, and Holiday.

The New York Times Magazine of February 17 had 62 total pages, with maybe 10 pages of paid ads, though some look like the kind of ads where the magazine is not paid a flat rate but is paid according to the number of people who respond to 800-number type ads.

The T Style Magazine of February 17 was 230 total pages with 126 pages of print ads, most very stylish fashion ads.

If you project the February 17 ad totals for a full year, the 52 issues of the Times Magazine would have 520 ad pages and the 11 issues of the Style Magazine would have 1,386 ad pages, which suggests that the Times makes lots of money on 11 issues of the Style Magazine and loses lots of money on the 52 issues of the Sunday Times Magazine.

In other words, traditional journalism loses money—what makes money is helping readers buy things.

Traditional journalism also raises the blood pressure of readers, especially in the Trump era where so much of the news is negative, while style journalism helps readers relax and enjoy life.

Give the New York Times credit for figuring out how to have it both ways—things are awful but life can be wonderful—and make money doing it.

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