After a rough couple of years, magazine ad sales are bouncing back:

It’s only March, but Hearst Magazines’ chief marketing officer, Michael Clinton, expects ad sales for his titles will be burning up this summer.

Sales for April rose 12% compared to the same period last year. Now Clinton says May will be even better. Ad sales across 13 of Hearst’s main titles are already up 17% for May, he says, and the month isn’t fully booked yet. Hearst won’t report official numbers until mid-April.

Hearst publishes such well-known titles as EsquireCosmopolitan,Good HousekeepingOprah andHouse Beautiful.

I’m happy to report that we’re seeing similar, if not better, trends at 5280. Sales for our May issue, which we’re finishing up this week, are up 17.5 percent over last year, and April was up a whopping 24 percent over 2009. That’s good news because, like most consumer magazines, ad sales represent the vast majority of our revenue, which means that we can continue investing in the kind of award-winning editorial content that our readers deserve.