Condé Nast is trading off its heritage of strong lifestyle coverage to form a new social media-focused beauty franchise to reap advertising dollars.
Consumers of the aforementioned titles will see content across social video, native content, personalized targeting and in print, from the group in September.
Edward Menicheschi, Condé Nast chief marketing officer and president of Condé Nast Media Group, explained that the beauty network uses “behavior insights” from subscribers and digital consumers of the publisher’s brands.
“We’re really passionate about this subject,” he said, explaining that his group began testing to see how consumers would respond over the last four months. That took the form of sending out digital newsletters to subscribers in Condé’s database who normally interfaced with the beauty-heavy titles, the exec explained.
The newsletter, #TheLookIs, which is comprised of 80 percent aggregated beauty content from Condé and 20 percent from around the Web, was sent to 500,000 consumers.
“It was a home run,” Menicheschi said, which meant that 43 percent of consumers opened the newsletter and didn’t unsubscribe.
The exec credited that to key behavioral learnings, the company’s 148 million social media followers and strong storytellers.
He underscored the storytelling aspect as a point of differentiation, after all Menicheschi was central to developing 23 Stories, the company’s native advertising unit which uses Condé Nast editors to create sponsored content.
Without breaking with tradition, Vogue beauty director Celia Ellenberg will oversee the first edition of #TheLookIs, but content will be customized based on the magazine. For instance, a story or video on hair care may feature different products or have another spin for Glamour than it does for Self.
Condé Nast’s Social Studio will work with beauty editors across the company to create short how-to videos, which it is calling “thumb stoppers.” Those will roll out on every social platform in tandem with print executions and the digital newsletter.
After the initial blast in the fall, #TheLookIs will publish in February, May and September/October. In general, content will roll out digitally for about 60 to 90 days for each publishing cycle. Advertisers will have the chance to “prominently” integrate their brands, and co-create content across formats and platforms, the company said.
Although the advertising landscape is constantly evolving, Menicheschi noted that his company is classified by the market as an “A player,” despite some fits and starts.
“It is changing so quickly,” he said. “There was a bit of tire kicking [when we launched 23 Stories in 2015]. But, we’ve signed over 20 clients at this point in the last year.”
While the company is focusing on beauty first, he offered that consumers and advertisers alike can expect to see similar offerings from Condé in other categories.
“Nothing good and thoughtful happens overnight,” he said. “It’s fair to say we’ll be in the market with other elements.”