We ran our bi-annual in-house reader survey over the course of last month. I’m happy to report that we got a good deal more people participating this year than we did back in 2009. This is extremely helpful – the more people that respond, the better we can understand what is going on. Otherwise, with Alberta readers as quiet as they are, we have no idea whether the crickets are a good thing or a bad thing.
There are a number of interesting statistics and responses that we’d like to bring up. The numbers below refer to survey respondents; however we use this sample to estimate trends within our entire readership.
Our most remembered edition was oddly September 2010 with Adam Levigne on the cover, followed closely by December 2010 (Cher), and May 2010 (Adam Lambert). From responses given, by our calculation the average reader spends 70 minutes reading GC&E Magazine each month.
Our most popular articles were the Community Photo Features (of course), followed by Community Organization and Event articles and Celebrity Interviews. As online articles go, we’re happy to see that 81% are reading them in some capacity.
Compared to our 2009 survey there is a significant dip in the number of people going out to the bars on a regular basis. All around, people’s spending seems to be a little more conservative.
A good point for event organizers across Canada hoping to attract people from Alberta (or vice versa): 82% of readers said they need one month or more of advance notice to consider attending an event in another province. That means running an ad the month of your event is not likely to be effective – at least 3 months of consecutive advertising prior to the event are required for the best results.
An impressive result that gives testament to the trusted reputation of our magazine, and effectiveness of advertising with us, is that nearly 70% of respondents stated that they are more likely to attend an event if it is sponsored by GC&E Magazine!
When it comes to being out of the closet, 78% stated they are fully out to their family, 81% are fully out to their friends, and 61% are fully out at work. These are pretty impressive numbers, and up from our 2009 survey.
Surprisingly (perhaps just to me) was the fact that so many people in the community are still experiencing discrimination. Over the past 12 months, 24% have felt discrimination at work, 20% at a mall or store, and 12% from healthcare workers (I’m listing only the top 3 here).
This year we asked many open ended questions, regarding how readers would like us to do things differently. A surprisingly common response was some rephrasing of "keep doing what you’re doing". It seems a lot of people are satisfied with the direction we are going with the magazine, and remain interested to see where we take them. Nevertheless we received some very reasonable suggestions that we will look into for this coming year.
One respondent said, "You folks are doing a great job! Serving all the different communities inside Alberta’s diverse group of queer and trans of all sorts is a tough job and you do it with seeming ease. Thank you for adding Edmonton into the fold and providing a great mix of fun mainstream and queer culture with Alberta focused stuff."
And the Winner Is...
We asked readers to name some of their community favourites; which businesses they thought were doing a great job, and which not so much. While we’re keeping some of the results a surprise for our upcoming Alberta’s Top 10 LGBT Figures article, here are the ones that we can reveal.
Keep in mind that for many of these questions, answers were so varied that it was often difficult to group them toward single categories. This resulted in percentages seeming low even for the top entries, and caused difficulty separating the lower numbers into different ranks.
Lastly, remember that this is our readership talking, and not us. Officially, we love everyone.
Favourite Major Alberta LGBT Event of 2010 (Top 5)
1. Canadian Rockies International Rodeo – ARGRA (17%)
2. Calgary Pride (15%)
3. TIE: Apollo Western Cup (5%), Edmonton Pride (5%), Fairy Tales Film Festival (5%)
Best LGBT-operated or LGBT-friendly Business or Non-Profit Group (Top 9)
1. Club Sapien (13%)
2. GayCalgary & Edmonton Magazine (10%)
3. Priape (7%)
4. Edmonton Pride Centre (6%)
5. TIE: FAB (4%), Texas Lounge (4%), Junction (4%), ISCWR (4%), Team Edmonton (4%)
Worst LGBT-operated or LGBT-friendly Business or Non-Profit Group (Top 4)
1. Twisted Element (17%)
2. TIE: Calgary Outlink (3%), Pride Calgary (3%), FLASH (3%)