Your Fellow Readers

Our recent readership study gives a pretty good picture of the typical Modern Machine Shop reader, who is probably a lot like you.


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We know these figures for a fact. There are more than 96,000 names on our list of qualified subscribers to Modern Machine Shop. These names are associated with 50,000 or so unique shops, plants or company locations. Names, addresses and other information such as standard industrial codes are collected when we receive a completed subscription form. This information is audited annually by BPA Worldwide to assure our advertisers that they can use this information with confidence.

However, this information gives us only a part of the picture. We want to know more about the kind of person who is reading this magazine. A recent survey of readers has helped round out and clarify that picture. The survey focused on the demographics of our readership, as indicated by the 564 survey respondents. Here is a summary of what we learned. The typical reader is:

Mature. More than 40 percent of respondents are age 51-60. Another 25 percent are 61 or older, while another 25 percent are 36-50.

Well-educated. Just more than half of the respondents have an undergraduate college degree. Eleven percent have a master’s degree.

Influential. Job titles representing company management were given by 34 percent of respondents. Titles in production management account for another 18.5 percent. Grouped together, titles in engineering, product design and R&D make up about 35 percent. This is good evidence that these readers play a key role in selecting equipment for their companies.

Loyal. More than 88 percent of respondents said they have been reading MMS for three years or longer. This figure includes 28 percent who have been readers for more than 20 years and 26 percent who have been readers for 11-20 years.

Other survey results indicated that respondents rated MMS very highly for being relevant to their jobs, providing a good mix of ads and editorial, being easy to read, helping them discover new products, and being a trusted source for technical content. Respondents indicated that they regularly use online resources to find further information about products, services and general technology. More than 75 percent use mmsonline.com for this purpose, along with other websites, especially those of metalworking suppliers.

We asked how many other people look at or read the respondent’s copy of MMS. More than 21 percent said at least one other person did. About 19 percent said two others and 13 percent three others. We can say we have 1.5 readers per copy.

This study has given us some goals and ideas for improvement. We want to attract and retain new readers who are younger. We have to keep our magazine and online content readable, accessible and relevant. We should write more articles about lean manufacturing for job shops; training and workforce development; performance benchmarking; machining of plastics and nonmetals; and automation.

To end, I want to thank the readers who completed the survey and to thank every reader for honoring us with their attention and trust.