Over 50,000 free copies of Houston-based Health & Fitness Sports magazine are distributed to 500 health clubs, restaurants, medical facilities and grocery stores in the Houston area. Owner and publisher Pat Monfrey says the Internet site gets 800,000 hits a month.
“I think it’s sad for the newspaper industry because because I really like to hold something in my hand when I’m reading it and absorbing it. But we have a whole world out there who doesn’t know about that, now, these youngsters who are coming up had rather do something on the Internet. But I think the magazine industry—and again, we’re just very, very fortunate that health, fitness, sports and beauty was a hot topic when the magazine started, but it gets hotter every month. And that’s what we write about!”
Monfrey says Health & Fitness Sports magazine is advertiser-driven, since it doesn’t sell subscriptions.
“Our income comes from out clients and our advertisers. So you just have so many people who are struggling to stay in business and everyone doesn’t feel that advertising is a high priority. Of course, I feel that it’s the number one priority. There’s this old saying in the industry ‘running a business without advertising—you know what you’re doing, but no one else does.’ So the people who are really staying on top in their industries are the people who are continuing to advertise.”
Monfrey bought the publication 17 years ago. One of Monfrey’s staffers, Del Marcum, recently celebrated her 87th birthday.