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Foreign Affairs, according to the semi-annual report published by the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM), is at its highest print circulation in the 90-plus-year history of the magazine.
The AAM study reports a total readership of 163,000 for the six-month period ending on December 31, 2012-breaking out into a subscription circulation of 129,385, a single-copy circulation of 31,584, and a non-paid circulation of 2,031. This represents a nearly 10% boost above the filed circulation reported only a year and a half ago.
Foreign Affairs also reaches an additional 16,000 readers via non-replica devices such as the Kindle and other platforms, bringing its total paid readership to 179,000.
This circulation growth is timed with the magazine's recent three-dollar increase of its cover price, from $9.95 to $12.99 (U.S.). In an industry-wide study, the International Periodical Distributors Association (IDPA) announced that Foreign Affairs enjoyed the largest growth in single-copy sales among all magazines that increased their cover price in the first half of 2012-a spike of 22%. And among AAM-audited titles, only two publications have a higher cover price.
"Readership is at an all-time high for the magazine, but there's an even more important story here. Our average price per copy, renewal rates, and time spent with each issue continue to increase," said Lynda Hammes, publisher of Foreign Affairs. "This indicates a deep loyalty and passion on the part of our readers, who remain committed to the magazine's unique and high-quality editorial content."
Investing in digital properties has also helped the magazine expand its readership. Foreign Affairs now publishes as much original content on the ForeignAffairs.com website as it does in the print magazine. In addition to pieces from the print issue, and original web material, the site also features 90 years of archives. In turn, ForeignAffairs.com page views are up about 17% compared to last year.
On top of breaking the two-million-page-view mark in January, ForeignAffairs.com also received nearly 750,000 daily unique visitors. The website featured original web pieces and articles from the magazine's January/February 2013 issue-the first issue to showcase the new redesign. In November 2012, Foreign Affairs also launched an iPad edition, which has since been downloaded nearly 20,000 times.
"The banner on our colophon reads 'ubique,' Latin for 'everywhere.' We're not quite there yet, but are moving in that direction," notes Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs.
"As magazines close their print editions, Foreign Affairs continues to invest in the core edition. However, digital innovation and e-marketing have been strong drivers of this growth as well," said Hammes. "Readers and advertisers can expect to see some exciting changes on ForeignAffairs.com and our mobile products in the forthcoming year." Hammes will discuss the redesign, iPad app, and other projects as a panelist at the Association of Magazine Media's Swipe conference on March 28.
Foreign Affairs, published by the Council on Foreign Relations since 1922, is an independent magazine of analysis and commentary on foreign policy and international affairs. In recent biannual surveys, Foreign Affairs has been ranked among the top ten most influential media outlets by the independent research firm Erdos & Morgan.