Buyers of the box will get a mix of fitness, food, tech and grooming products four times a year. The content of each box is selected by Men’s Health editors, represent best-of-class products that have been tested and, in most cases, featured in the magazine. Each box costs $89.99; consumers get 10 percent off if they sign up for a yearlong subscription — four boxes — for $323.96.
According to editor in chief Bill Phillips, there is a separation between what brands editors put in the box and which brands advertise in the pages of the magazine.
“Ultimately, we’re the filter for our reader. We want to meet our readers where they are,” Phillips said. “Even on the advertising side, we see it again and again, our readers buy [products from the magazine]. There’s no reason they wouldn’t buy from us.”
The first box, which ships in April, has a retail value of $280, comprises 11 items selected by fashion director Brian Boye, fitness director BJ Gaddour and food/nutrition editor Paul Kita.
Contents include Zing Socks, Clinique SPF 21 Moisturizer, Recipe for Men Under Eye Gel, Fatman’s Beef Jerky Sweet & Spicy and XD Aluminum Handle jump rope.
The partnership with The Box Out Group is three-year licensing agreement that extends through 2018. Rodale executive director of business development and global licensing Kevin LaBonge characterized it as a revenue-share deal with Box Out, which has helped with the marketing and sourcing of the products, among other things.
Case in point: Men’s Health filmed a TV commercial for the box, which have begun airing on ESPN and CNN this week.
Although the team at Men’s Health is aware of the fickle subscription box market, LaBonge said the competition is sparse in the men’s market. He noted that while a few brands have boxes, there aren’t any other men’s magazines that offer a curated selection of products. As a result, the team is testing out pricing and other offerings that may include a subscription to Men’s Health down the line.
LaBonge also noted that Rodale will likely extend the box subscription service to other Rodale titles such as Women’s Health and Runner’s World.