It’s no secret that the print magazine industry has gone through a rough patch of late. More and more newsstand and subscription titles have ceased publication in recent years, a result of the meteoric rise of online behemoths like Google and Facebook.
But one magazine is bucking this trend, and kicking goals (or in this case, making birdies) across the country.
Inside Golf Magazine, published by independent publisher Outdoor Sports Publishing, has seen significant growth in its print title, due to a unique distribution model combined with a healthy online presence.
The magazine, which is distributed free to golfers via clubs, practice facilities and retailers, has maintained a steady print run of over 40,000 copies per month over the last year (the highest-circulating, CAB-Audited golf publication in Australia). In addition, their online presence has skyrocketed over the last 12 months, with (at present count) a massive 14,500 organically-grown Facebook followers (and rising), and a healthy 26,000-strong community of email subscribers.
According to Sam Arthur, Publisher of Inside Golf, the secret to the magazine’s success is simple.
“The team at Inside Golf are extremely passionate about golf; we live, breathe and play the game, so we know what appeals to our readership,” says Arthur. “We strive to provide a high-quality, entertaining magazine that features something for all golfers to enjoy—from beginners all the way through to club professionals and industry leaders , while also keeping it as Aussie-centric as possible. Sure, the punters love that it’s free, but more importantly, we make sure it’s packed with solid, award-winning content that is worth reading every month.”
Behind the scenes, Arthur and the team are equally passionate about affordability and efficiency.
“We aim for efficiency in our processes, and to keep our costs as low as possible, without sacrificing quality,” he says. “This extends to our content acquisition–we rarely purchase overseas content, but instead choose to go with home-grown, Australian stories. Our production process utilises the latest online technologies, while our delivery, administration and all other parts of the business are carefully monitored to reduce inefficiency and waste. We also strive for clear and transparent communication within the team and with our clients. And we also make sure to mix a bit of fun in there as well.”
While the magazine’s readership numbers are certainly strong, importantly, these readers and online followers are also proving to be extremely active, with one of the most energetic Facebook response rates of any page in the industry. As a result, campaigns and giveaways on the page are enjoying hundreds of thousands of shares and likes – with one recent giveaway–an electric buggy supplied by R&J Batteries—seen by over 150,000 people on Facebook alone! Meanwhile, content/stories on the Inside Golf website are also highly in demand, with over 1.2 million pageviews logged in the preceding 12-month period.
The magazine’s email community is also extremely active: Recent Inside Golf email campaigns have enjoyed a whopping 40% open rate, and a 18% click-through rate, around double the industry average of 22% and 4.7% respectively.
Identifying gaps in the market (and capitalising on them) is also key for the team. Inside Golf has branched out into a highly-successful travel magazine (Inside Golf Travel), and expanded the Club News section of its monthly publication. It has also recently made a strong push into the golf industry/business segment, with an expanded IG Business section, as well as a Facebook page dedicated solely to the business of golf.
A variety of print and online packages are available for all clubs around Australia starting from $220 plus GST per month over 12 months. Contact Sam Arthur on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0410575303
About Inside Golf
As Australia’s Most-Read Golf Publication (named by Australian golfers) and Australia’s highest-circulating audited golf publication (CAB Audited every year), Inside Golf is the recognised “golf magazine of choice” by golfers, industry leaders and general managers across Australia.
Inside Golf is an innovative, independent and trusted voice in Australian Golf. Inside Golf features in-depth coverage of Australian golf news, golf events, golf travel and holiday destinations, Australian and international golf course reviews, the hottest new golf gear, tips and great giveaways. Written by award-winning journalists, it also features interviews with Australia’s top professional golfers, the game’s rising stars, industry leaders and golf equipment manufacturers.
The publication is also known for breaking new ground in the online/digital space, being the first golf publication in Australia to launch a full page-turning online/digital edition (2006); the first to launch a Facebook page (2009); the first to launch a fully-integrated online/offline advertising media platform (2009); and the first to make the foray into iPads and tablets (2011).