Last year was a hard one for magazines. Ad sales got a real hit, circulation numbers continued to dwindle and the industry continued to be affected by the precarious state of the global economy. At the start of the new year editors were hoping that 2012 would bring good news and based on the figures of the latest March issues, it has.
Most magazines have experienced an increase in ad-pages and Vogue continue to lead the pack. The magazine's March issue had 442 ad pages which is up by 16 pages on the same issue last year. InStyle is up 39 pages and 13 percent from last year while Elle received one of the lowest increases compared to the rest with only a 2 percent rise. “We’re up, we’re pleased, but it’s never good enough for me,” Kevin O’Malley, publisher at the magazine, told WWD. “The key drivers are luxury and prestige. As I’m looking deeper into this year, I see growth in American fashion and more on the European side. And I see growth in automotive — Buick, Infiniti and Acura.”
Just when we thought that the editorial musical chairs had ended, it is now showing no sign of slowing down. Alex White recently left W magazine as fashion director and has since been replaced by Edward Enninful who has also be replaced in his role as fashion director at i-D by Charlotte Stockdale and now reports allege that Glenda Bailey may be on her way out at Harper's Bazaar.
Carol Smith, the former publisher of ELLE, has moved to the magazine to take her role as the new VP, publisher and chief revenue officer. Considering her short stint at Bon Appétit, sources predict that Smith will want to prove herself and stamp her authority particularly with magazines like Harper's who experienced a 5.4% decrease in ad pages and circulation numbers in the first half of 2011. Many are blaming Bailey for the magazine's poor performance this year. However, a source at the magazine told WWD that: “Glenda rumors come all the time, it’s just like the boy who cries wolf. For the past two years, there have been Glenda rumors,” and besides, a source at Hearst revealed that at least for the time being, “Glenda and Carol seem to be speaking the same language.”
Carol Smith is making the move from her position as ELLE's senior vice president and chief brand officer tat Hachette Fillipachi. After working with the magazine for the last eight years Smith has decided to move to Conde Nast where she will come in as vice president and publishing director of Gourmet and Bon Appetit.
“Carol Smith will oversee business developments for the brands that will include TV, books, and online opportunities,” said a Conde Nast corporate spokeswoman.
Recent speculation alleges that the role will act as an audition for Smith, who will report to Tom Florio, Vogue's publishing director and vice president who is set to move up in the company and is looking for his replacement.