PUBLISHERS FEEL THE PAIN: Ralph Lauren’s deep-pocketed luxurious imagery will have much less exposure come fall. The company, which has undertaken several cost-cutting measures as part of its “Way Forward” strategy, has reduced its advertising in several magazines both in the U.S. and Europe for fall. The company decided to pull back the advertising of some brands for print and digital. The firm sent cancellation notices to certain titles this past spring, and reduced pages in other magazines. Sources said it still plans to advertise in titles such as Vanity Fair, Vogue, GQ, GQ Style, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others, although perhaps less than it has in the past. It will also advertise in several Hearst titles, but to a lesser extent than before, said sources. One source indicated fringe titles were eliminated from the media plan. Unlike last year, Lauren is not planning to run a magalogue with Vanity Fair this September. The firm does plan to increase its digital experience on its own Web site.
A Lauren spokesman confirmed that for the fourth quarter, the company has pulled back on advertising and communicated that to publishers several months ago as part of its “Way Forward” strategy. He declined to specify which titles got pulled or what percentage of the advertising got cut, but said it was part of the industry trend examining the luxury sector and what’s been happening with magazines. He said the brand was working toward a plan around the company’s 50th anniversary next year.
As part of its restructuring, Lauren also intends to close multiple stores. Lauren closed 43 stores during fiscal-year 2016, with another 50-plus store closures expected during fiscal 2017. WWD has learned the RRL store at 383 Bleecker Street store closed on Sunday. It closed its unit at the NorthPark Center in Dallas in April.