Washington, D.C. (October 1, 2015)—TheAtlantic.com set an all-time audience record in September, surpassing 25 million unique visitors in a month that saw the launch of a Science section; a renewed emphasis on news; the introduction of a new section, called Notes, that embraces short-form blogging; and the rollout of a series of videos and posts supporting the magazine’s blockbuster cover story on mass incarceration. Overall, The Atlantic’s audience across print, digital and video has grown by 37 percent year over year, according to newly released data from the Association of Magazine Media, making it one of the fastest growing brands in the publishing industry. Revenue for the whole of The Atlantic has also been experiencing unprecedented growth due to gains in digital advertising and events, putting the company on track to pass the record-setting revenue in 2014.
Digital advertising revenue is up 30 percent year over year, driven in large part by custom programs and sponsor content from clients including Allstate, Boeing, and Cathay Pacific. The company’s events group, AtlanticLIVE, is on track to see a 20 percent revenue gain in 2015, and its creative consultancy, Atlantic Media Strategies, is forecasting more than 50 percent growth.
“Armed with great editorial products, our sales team is demonstrating how creativity, intelligence, and raw hunger can drive success in a competitive market,” said Bob Cohn, The Atlantic’s co-president and COO. “It helps, of course, to have the power of The Atlantic’s storied brand and entrepreneurial DNA in the conversation.”
The audience gain at TheAtlantic.com—which surpasses the previous record set in March 2015 by 20 percent—reflects an expansion across the site this year. TheAtlantic.com underwent a complete redesign in April, has recently debuted a number of editorial projects, and added new roles to its masthead.
“September really demonstrated the range and depth of The Atlantic’s journalism, and the unique contribution that it makes. Our writers and editors brought unusual insight to breaking news about the refugee crisis and the pope’s visit to the U.S., while igniting a national debate about the true causes and consequences of mass incarceration—and finding new ways to showcase our readers’ wisdom on all these matters,” said James Bennet, The Atlantic’s co-president and editor in chief.
Among the company-wide highlights:
Increase in Native Programs: The Atlantic and its creative marketing group Re:think continue to elevate the standards for sponsor content. They have published 50 percent more sponsor content pieces year to date. For a recent three-part series for Qualcomm, Re:think commissioned and then animated original illustrations depicting the future of technologies in health care and cognition.
Return to Blogging: TheAtlantic.com revived blogging with “Notes,” a section whose mission is captured by its tagline: “First thoughts, running arguments, stories in progress.” From the continuing debate over the new political correctness on campus to perfect cartoon captions to breaking news on John Boehner’s resignation, Notes is filling a need for writers and readers.
The Science Section: The best in science journalism now has a new home at TheAtlantic.com following the September roll-out of a dedicated Science section. Science coverage is overseen by senior editor Ross Andersen, with frequent reporting from Ed Yong who joined The Atlantic as a contributor last month.
The Age of Mass Incarceration: The Atlantic’s current cover story by Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration, takes an unflinching look at the deep reach of America’s criminal-justice system and its effect on black families and debuted online as part of a surround-sound multimedia package. The Age of Mass Incarceration Special Report includes annotated versions of Coates’s cover story and the Moynihan Report, three accompanying videos produced by The Atlantic’s video team, and more than two dozen responses to, debates about, and articles relating to this story.
Expanded Masthead: TheAtlantic.com added a number of new roles in recent months, including Engagement Editor Chris Bodenner, News Editor Krishnadev Calamur, Social Media Editor Caitlin Frazier, Senior Associate Editor and Assignment Editor Catherine Green, and Senior Editor Ross Andersen who oversees science, tech, and health coverage.