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Rodale Surveys Customer on Spending Plans

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Health and fitness publisher Rodale surveyed readers about their spending plans, and, perhaps not surprisingly, the findings showed that amid tough economic times, its customers are committed to maintaining spending on their own well-being.

Rodale, publisher of titles including Prevention, Men’s Health and Women’s Health, hopes that the survey findings will bolster its standing with advertisers in a punishing ad climate. This year through April, year-over-year ad pages at Prevention fell 23.4 percent to 276, per the Mediaweek Monitor. Men’s Health’s pages declined 22.5 percent to 205 in the same period. Earlier this year, the company shut down Men’s Health spinoff BestLife, citing the challenging economy.

Among the survey’s key findings:


-the vast majority of respondents plan to spend more or the same amount of money on groceries and organic food;

-85 percent plan to spend at least as much on drugs/medicine in the next six months as they did a year ago, while 72 percent plan to do the same when it comes to beauty/personal care;

-regarding luxuries, 68 percent plan to spend the same or more on health clubs or gyms and 55 percent plan to do the same on home entertainment

On the economy, Rodale readers are an optimistic bunch: 91 percent expected their financial situation to improve or stay the same in the coming year, and the percent that expected their situation to improve in the coming year rose to 52 percent from 45 percent in July 2008, when Rodale asked the same question.

Nearly 4,000 readers responded to the online survey, which was conducted in January.