Gripped pedals new cycling magazine

The new pub, called Canadian Cycling Magazine, was launched to reach the 'underserviced' market of Canadian recreational bike enthusiasts.

With its launch issue on newsstands and a print run of 25,000, the wheels are just beginning to turn for Canadian Cycling Magazine.

Launched March 5 at the Toronto International Bicycle Show, the mag is aimed at a niche market of an estimated 700,000 cyclists, says Sam Cohen, publisher, Gripped, the parent company of the new periodical. The magazine is primarily being promoted with premium newsstand placement and a direct mail campaign.

The target audience, he says, is one that advertisers have so far found desirable.

‘Our consumer is probably 37[-years-old], reasonably affluent and goes bike riding on the weekends. They’re also gainfully employed in an urban area. Our consumer base is probably 70% male.’

Saying he felt the Canadian cycling market was underserviced, Cohen explains that the new magazine fit within the company’s existing stable of publications (which includes The Climbing Magazine, Triathalon Magazine and Canadian Running Magazine), a benefit to both readers and advertisers.

‘We’ve been pretty successful so far,’ Cohen says. ‘In the case of all the markets we’re in, our readers are self-selected in terms of identifying with these activities, be it running, cycling or triathlon, and they’re all participation sports. We’re dealing with very motivated, active people, so we can offer advertisers different types of readers, but all with a specific focus.’

Advertisers on board for the first issue of the bi-monthly mag include 27 industry-endemic brands such as Giant, Racer Sportif, Shimano and General Nutrition Centers.

‘We’re in the fortunate position where there is definitely advertising dollars still available for magazines in print media,’ Cohen explains. ‘We’ve been able to get the attention of advertisers and the attention of readers. In the world of general print, things are obviously on a decline, but I think when you start segmenting the market and you go after cyclists exclusively, then consumer interest is higher.’

He also says that many of the brands on board are multinational companies with wholly-owned Canadian subsidiaries that have ‘marketing budgets they didn’t have a place to spend.’