- earth calling singletrack
wilsation – Member
Singletrack, who exactly do you think your core readership is?
Those who reply to the ‘how much do you earn’ poll on the front page, seemingly.
It’s been the same for a while now.
I don’t feel the magazine is aimed at ‘ordinary’ people anymore, we’ve been squeezed out in the rush upmarket.
Shame really.Posted 3 years agodazhSubscriber
I’d rather that than the mag being full of fawning reviews about the latest specialized/trek/giant/scott/mass produced bike that have barely any differences between them. And I’d say it’s a pretty safe bet that a sizeable proportion of the readership are able, but maybe not willing, to spend 4-6k on a bike.Posted 3 years ago
Yak – Member
Should we have a £500max-build-a-bike-from-the-classifieds only grouptest?
Here’s a thought – how about something for everyone?
The magazine is constantly telling us it’s inclusive and aimed at everyone who loves mountain biking.Posted 3 years ago
That’s starting to look like an increasingly hollow statement, I’m afraid.johnheSubscriber
I disagree with most of you I’m afraid. I may not buy a new £30k van, but I think the test is perfectly good at informing me about those vans if I ever decided to buy a used one with more miles on the clock. In any case, I loved the van article.
I also have very limited interest in seeing tests of new £500 bikes. Hardly a single one of the bikers I ride I with (and most are blokes of very modest means) ride bikes in that range. I don’t know how everyone affords it, but most folks seem to ride £1500-£2500 bikes. Or hardtails in the £800-£1500 range.
But I love seeing reviews of the bikes I dream about riding, which are £4k – £6k. Even if the chances of me owning one are very slim.Posted 3 years agostilltortoiseSubscriber
The team at STW appear to do their market research and personally I think the mag is good. I don’t think you have to be able to afford a new Santa Cruz carbon number to be the target market for the mag. I enjoy reading the reviews of these “aspirational” bikes in the same way I enjoy reading about the latest Ferrari in Top Gear.
They occasionally review (relatively) affordable bikes but to be frank I don’t buy it for the bike reviews. If I was after a low to mid-end full susser I’d be reading something else entirely. Is it Singletrack’s fault that bike prices have gone up and up in recent years?
It’s an aspirational mag. I aspire to have a top-end boutique bike. I aspire to ride these far-flung trails around the world (and the UK for that matter). I aspire to add some niche bikes to my fleet. I read Singletrack because I like to dream. I don’t need to subscribe to the real-world; I’m already in it 🙂Posted 3 years agoedlongMember
They’re running a business, and I’m sure if people didn’t buy the mag in sufficient numbers, they’d change the content, wouldn’t they?
And aren’t all the mountain bike mags basically the same? Which one doesn’t mainly feature multi-thousand-pound bikes? It’s what people buy (the mag, that is, rather than the expensive bike featured).
Isn’t it the same across sectors anyway – people are aspirational. Look at the roads: full of Mondeos, Focuses, Civics, Fiestas, Micras. Look at the covers of the glossy car mags on the newsstands: Lamborghini, Maserati, Ferrari…
There is something about magazines and their dependence on the industry, and it’s naïve to think that a magazine dependent on advertising revenue is ever, even if the writers thought it so, going to come out with “expensive bikes are all a waste of money, buy these cheap ones instead” but I don’t think singletrack is any more guilty than all the rest in that regard, that’s just how it is.
MBR really hacked me off a while ago with their take on it – responding to the same moan from readers that they only featured unrealistically expensive machinery, they did a test at the other end of the market, but really took the urine with it – buying secondhand wrecks and supermarket BSOs for £100, which were obviously useless and / or dangerous and then concluded that cheap bikes were useless and / or dangerous so you had to buy an expensive one if you wanted to go mountain biking…Posted 3 years agowilsationMember
Singletrack, who exactly do you think your core readership is? In the last edition you reviewed bikes at 4k and 6k and vans at 30k. The issue before that you reviewed bikes that you had to have hand built. Why write about stuff that the vast majority of us will never have a hope of actually owning.Posted 3 years agowwaswasSubscriber
I don’t know what stw’s circulation is but I saw WhatMTB was less than 15,000 last time I read it.
Which may go someway to explain why Future are completely restructuring their business and make a lot of staff redundant.
STW seem to be expanding, though (launching cx site, number of pages increasing etc), so they must be appealing to a wide enough audience that it’s commercially viable?Posted 3 years agoMrOvershootSubscriber
I’m not sure how much you earn is always a good indicator of disposable income.
I have a few friends who earn 4 times my salary and are always skint as they have bought very expensive property or have lots of children.
Despite my relative poverty in pay compared to them we have low outgoings, very small mortgage, car paid for upfront 6 years ago, no other debts, oh and no children.
So as a result I can if needed save very quickly for most things, but I’ve reached a point where I have more than enough bikes & spares that are if I’m honest too good for my ability.
Instead have embarked on “Nigel’s World of Wood” that’s a log cabin workshop/bike store.Posted 3 years agoMarkSubscriber
Singletrack to earth..
Most of what I would have said has been said, so this is to acknowledge that we have read this.
I want to add that we are already working on an entry level bike article featuring good hardtails at around £500 and FS bikes at around £1000. That will be ready for publishing online sometime in June/July.
Our recent poll suggests that about a third of you have household incomes over £75k. Has anyone seen the Maserati ad that pops up now and then? That’s a targeted ad to the site demographic! I know! It’s crazy! But there you go. Chipps was also at pains to point out that vans do end up on the 2nd hand market for reasonable prices and when they do that’s when most of us will stand a realistic chance of being able to get one I imagine. But the van feature has attracted an order of magnitude fewer complaints than our infamous pedal car feature of yore 🙂
For the record, Singletrack is intended to be aspirational and inspirational. ‘No one buys Top Gear magazine for the Yaris reviews… even if you drive a Yaris’, said Chipps over my shoulder just now.Posted 3 years agorOcKeTdOgSubscriber
Why write about stuff that the vast majority of us will never have a hope of actually owning.
Posted 4 hours ago # Report-Post
who wants to read about a cheap bike you could easily afford?, i want to see the exotic new stuff that i aspire to own and articles on places i long to visit
buying secondhand wrecks and supermarket BSOs for £100, which were obviously useless and / or dangerous and then concluded that cheap bikes were useless and / or dangerous
you need a magazine to tell you that?Posted 3 years ago
I liked the £100 bike article.
In fact, I liked it so much I bought the bike from Chipps. 🙂
The thing about ‘Car’ mag, mentioned above is that it takes cheap machinery just as seriously as the bling.
And still remains ‘aspirational and inspirational and retains it’s credibility.
I like the reviews of the bling in ST, always seem fair and well reasoned, but I’d just like to see the balance shifted slightly.
So, I’m looking forward to the article mentioned, as I fancy a new bike.
I like the travel articles too.Posted 3 years ago
I’d much rather travel somewhere nice and ride a cheaper bike than spend thousands on one.
molgrips – Member
Car magazines are just about cars though. Most people use their cars to get to work and go to the shops, so the actual driving doesn’t make for great copy.
‘Car’ is more famous for it’s inspirational road trip stories and it’s excellent journalism as it is for the reviews.
Honestly, try some LJK Setright, Russell Bulgin, George Bishop or Phil Llewellyn.Posted 3 years ago
The topic ‘earth calling singletrack’ is closed to new replies.