Foreign Affairs magazine enjoyed year-over-year increases in total circulation and paid subscriptions, including a substantial boost in digital subscriptions, according to the most recent audit published by the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM). This caps off a two-year period in which total circulation for the magazine grew by nearly 10 percent.
Between January 1, 2012, and January 1, 2014, total audited circulation rose from the 151,077 to the current 165,002 figure—representing an increase of 9.2 percent. The two-year spike coincided with a newsstand price hike of 30 percent, making Foreign Affairs the second most expensive newsstand title audited by the AAM, and a subscription price rise from $44.95 to $54.95. As reported in the AAM audits, total paid subscriptions increased from 129,385 to 136,768 between January 1, 2013, and January 1, 2014—year-over-year growth of 6 percent.
The largest area of new acquisition happened with digital readership. The second half of 2013 showed a spike of more than 3,000 new digital subscribers over the prior statement—a jump of 16 percent. This, combined with the 4,000 new digital subscribers Foreign Affairs acquired in the first half of 2013, means the magazine saw digital subscriptions increase by almost 45 percent in one year.
These increases bring the magazine’s audited paid digital audience to 22,068. More than 37,000 audited readers—digital-only and the magazine’s “Plus” all-access subscribers—now enjoy Foreign Affairs issue replicas in a digital format. The magazine also reaches an additional 9,000 readers who receive nonreplica editions on the iPad app, Kindle, and other eReader partners.
Overall, total paid circulation increased by 1 percent year-over-year, from 163,000 to 165,002. The growth of the digital audience has offset industry-wide softening sources, like single-copy newsstand sales. Foreign Affairs also reports an additional 1 percent in print subscriptions over last year.
“The magazine is experiencing an exciting era of growth,” says Emilie Harkin, Foreign Affairs marketing director. “Our digital numbers continue to climb, thanks to an increasingly mobile audience plus rising international readership, while subscriber commitment to print flagship publication remains strong.”
The continuing increase in circulation and subscription is partially tied to the website’s emphasis on providing content tied to the daily news cycle, notably its coverage of the crises in Egypt, Syria, and Ukraine, as well as the Iranian nuclear talks. ForeignAffairs.com currently averages roughly one million visits and just under seven hundred thousand unique visitors a month. The magazine also has over 580,000 Facebook "Likes" and 260,000 Twitter followers.
“We're delighted that as we continue to cover the world in ever more interesting ways, across ever more platforms, our audience is following and growing,” notes Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs.