NEW YORK — Teen Vogue and accessories firm Dooney & Bourke are taking value-added programs to a new dimension.
Teen Vogue helped find young women to design a new teen-oriented handbag line for Dooney & Bourke, which in turn will break its ad campaign for the collection with the magazine, marking the first time the company has advertised in a teen publication.
Magazines have been clearly stepping out of their role as pure publishers for years, and this is one more departure from the traditional method of gaining advertising.
“This is the first time we have done anything like this, but overall, our approach to added value is a much more customized one,” said Jane Grenier, associate publisher, marketing, for Teen Vogue. “Working with Teen Vogue also confers a certain credibility to the handbag line.”
“The concept of this was for teens to create bags that are for teens,” noted Stephen Grisanti, Dooney & Bourke’s director of retail who is helping oversee this project.
As part of the deal, Dooney & Bourke this spring took a group of seven young women and one young man, including four found by Teen Vogue and four students from the Fashion Institute of Technology, to Italy to tour some factories, visit trade shows and create the line. While most of the trip was funded by Dooney, Teen Vogue sponsored a kickoff dinner and retained a photographer for the group while in Milan, among other things.
Also, as part of the added-value program, Teen Vogue readers can register at the Web site, teenvogueitgirls.com, as part of a chance to win a Dooney & Bourke It Bag, and a promotional page describing the project, “The Making of the It Bag,” will run in an upcoming issue of the magazine. Dooney & Bourke has committed to run one-page ads in the next three Teen Vogue issues. According to the magazine’s rate card, a full page, four-color ad costs $31,248 when run three times. Grenier stressed the magazine’s editors weren’t involved in picking the teens and did not have a say in the bag’s design.
It may not be long before other teen magazines initiate similar programs. Jeanne Schwenk, publisher of Elle Girl said, “This is a very creative generation. They’re very fashion conscious and beauty conscious and aspire to be part of the dialogue and aspire to careers in fashion and beauty instead of aspiring to be a model, which is kind of refreshing.”There are four styles of the limited-edition handbags, which are made of PVC over cotton, feature colored zippers and have a special pink heart-shaped hangtag to differentiate it from other Dooney & Bourke lines. With their white background and colored logos, the look is similar to the Louis Vuitton Takashi Murakami bag that has been a hot seller this season. Prices for the “It” collection will be less than $200 and distribution for the line will likely include department stores, a company spokesman said.
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