This piece by Robert McCrum in Sunday’s Observer, built on a preamble about the boom in the print sales of children’s books, was mainly about Scoop, a magazine for children launched about a year ago.
According to the magazine’s Twitter feed, the effect of the piece has been immediate and marked:
Sixteen fold increase on subs thanks to fantastic press this weekend. Thank you Observer @guardiannews 📈📈📈
— SCOOP Magazine (@scoop_the_mag) September 4, 2017
Not quite sure what “sixteen-fold” means in this context – surely not that the subscriber base has multiplied 16 times – more likely that requests for new subscriptions following the Observer article were 16 times up on the normal daily average. How significant that is depends on how many new subscribers are added on a normal day.
The Scoop story illustrates the resilience of print and paper in the face of the digital revolution. Inspired by an Edwardian model, Arthur Mee’s Children’s Newspaper, Scoop is a mix of crusade and creativity. Establishment heavyweights such as the playwright Tom Stoppard, plus children’s writers such as Raymond Briggs, author of Fungus The Bogeyman, have adopted its cause. The magazine has also given space to 10-year-old writers and pays all contributors, high and low, the same rate – 10p a word.
It’s a winning formula. Macmillan-Scott reports “a quarterly sales increase of roughly 150% every issue”