Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Mixed Signals From Meredith: Ad Sales Are Less Bad, but Still Lousy

ladies-home-journalSo now that the economy is officially growing again, when will marketers start spending again? It can’t happen soon enough for ad-supported companies (and their employees).

The latest unpleasant news comes from magazine heavyweight Meredith (MDP), which does its best to explain that things aren’t that bad: Two of the publisher’s big titles–Better Homes and Gardens and Family Circle–saw ad revenue grow in the last quarter, and the company says its magazine unit notched its “third consecutive quarter of advertising performance improvement.”

That sounds good, right? Except that magazine ad revenue still dropped five percent compared with the same quarter a year–and last year’s quarter was a terrible one in which ads dropped by 18 percent.

More data points to watch for in the next few days: The Washington Post (WPO), which reports tomorrow, and Time Warner (TWX), due up next week.


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