SEPTEMBER SEESAW: Fashion and lifestyle magazines experienced some ups and downs in their all-important September issues, as the industry continued to weather a volatile environment.
This story first appeared in the July 23, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Vogue, a perennial leader in September advertising pages, pulled out the best page tally at 631, but that constituted a 4.5 percent decline over last year’s haul of 661 pages.
Susan Plagemann, Vogue vice president and publisher, said the magazine continues to build on its “defined position, both in the industry and with consumers.” She noted that digital revenue has increased by 31 percent year-to-date.
Meanwhile, Time Inc.’s InStyle magazine, which is feting its 20th anniversary, came in second with 485 pages, a 6 percent gain, while Hearst’s Elle netted 465 pages, an increase of 5.2 percent.
Harper’s Bazaar wasn’t too far behind with 444 pages, which constituted an 11.6 percent rise.
Condé Nast’s other women’s fashion magazines, Glamour and W, turned in mixed results. Glamour logged 215 pages, a 4 percent decline, while W turned in a 5.2 percent rise with 303 pages.
Back at Hearst, Marie Claire, which is turning 20 this year, had a 7.3 percent increase in pages to 265. Cosmopolitan, which put Lucy Hale on its September cover, said pages totaled 188 for a 9.1 percent gain, while Town & Country had the company’s biggest increase — 25.4 percent — with 143 pages.
Other lifestyle players turned in varied results. Condé’s Vanity Fair had a decline of 1.9 percent with 232 pages, as Time Inc.’s midmarket People StyleWatch grabbed 203 pages, up from 191. Luxe-inspired cousin Departures, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary with the September issue, projected a 48 percent increase, bringing pages to 185 from 125 a year earlier. Rival Condé Nast Traveler said its pages rose 15.2 percent to 91 for the month.
Teen magazines experienced setbacks, recording the biggest declines.
Hearst’s Seventeen turned in a 6.2 percent decline in pages to 106, according to the Media Industry Newsletter.
At Condé Nast, Lucky and Teen Vogue got hit the hardest, registering respective declines of 34.3 percent and 33.9 percent. Ad pages at Lucky tumbled to 90 from 137 a year earlier. Teen Vogue’s pages declined by 56, according to MIN, which noted that ad pages equaled 112.
WSJ. Magazine, which will feature Daria Werbowy on its September cover, said it is producing the largest issue in its six-year history. Ad pages rose to 90, marking a 23.3 percent increase for the month. T The New York Times Style Magazine’s ad pages expanded to 157, up 4 percent, according to vice president of luxury advertising Brendan Monaghan, who said it was T’s largest fashion issue in more than six years. He estimated that the publication would likely eke out three to five more pages before the month closes.
“Growth was fueled by international fashion; up 10 percent, luxury, up 22 percent, and American fashion, up 4 percent,” he said, noting that new advertisers included Brian Atwood, Diesel, Oscar de la Renta, Paige Denim, Phillip Lim, Seven For All Mankind and Target.
At the men’s fashion books, GQ said ad pages were flat at 203, while Details, which lost its publisher last week to Maxim, had a 10 percent decline in pages to 132.