Who's out there?

Who's out there?

Alan Hitchcox
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Statistics probably would not be a fun class to take, but often it’s fun to go over statistics — especially for baseball, football, and other sports. And sometimes I even go over the stats in our circulation statement. It’s not as much fun as going over baseball stats, but reviewing our circulation statement helps me get a feel for who reads Hydraulics & Pneumatics.

Our biannual circulation statement comes from BPA Worldwide, Shelton, Conn. BPA not only verifies that 100% of recipients have asked for their subscriptions and that they meet our subscription qualifications, but BPA also audits our circulation so it can provide statistics. For example, of our 46,000+ qualified subscribers, more than a third (17,370) are in the Great Lakes region. What state has the most subscribers? California is way out in front with 4,267, followed by Texas, with 3,401, and Ohio and Illinois right behind, with 3,238 and 3,014, respectively.

What type of people subscribe to H&P? More than 80% work in manufacturing, and of these, more than 34% design original equipment. The remaining 20% of the total are with system integrators, distributors, repair and maintenance, academia, and others. And of all qualified subscribers, 16% choose to receive their magazine digitally, rather than a printed copy. This is double the percentage from just two years ago, when 8% of subscribers opted for digital.

After going over all these stats, I wondered how things have changed. I spoke with our circulation manager, Debbie Brady, to find out how far back her circulation statements go. She said her copies date back to 1956. I don’t know how meaningful stats from that era would be, so I asked for a copy from 1991 — not only 20 years ago, but just before the internet started its profound influence on all of business and industry. Back then, California accounted for 10% of all subscribers, followed by Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

But I must confess that I had to peek when Debbie showed me the statement from 1954. At that time, Michigan was #1. I’m no statistician, but I’m sure this was attributed to how dominant the American automobile industry was at the time.