NEW YORK — Bergdorf Goodman, eager to ditch the “catalog” label that has clung to its magazine since its launch in 2000, plans to boost its editorial budget and explore new distribution channels — including the newsstand. The aim is to make Bergdorf’s the Magazine more like Vogue or W than other store’s house organs.
The spring issue, mailed to 300,000 Bergdorf’s customers last week, features a separate men’s section for the first time (running from a flipped cover in the back) and 50 pages of advertising, up 20 percent from the year before, according to store executives, although many are from store vendors. Its featured photographers and models, including Walter Chin, Anouck Lapere and Jacquetta Wheeler, are blue chip.
But to make the leap and be taken seriously as a real glossy title, Bergdorf’s will fill out the pages with journalism in succeeding issues, beginning next fall. It won’t be Harper’s, but it could give Hamptons a fight. “We would like this to read like a traditional magazine where the copy is not only about product and fashion, but general interests,” said vice president and creative director Ted Deitert.
Bergdorf’s is circumspect about what a ramped-up magazine might cost, but to earn extra cash, the store has begun distributing copies in New York City hotels like the Ritz-Carlton and the Waldorf-Astoria, and is currently investigating cruise ships and even airport newsstands, according to senior vice president of marketing Michael Calman. “It’s all part of a prospecting strategy to reach out to new customers,” he said.