Living for the weekend: MediaPost’s Michael Shields reports Time Inc. has begun “pitching advertisers on an innovative new weekend magazine reach package that combines just resurrected Life with People magazine.”
Both titles have a Friday newsstand date and the combination of People’s mega circulation with Life’s initial rate base of 12 million will deliver the kind of reach that can compete effectively with the weekend traffic-building of top network TV series….it’s likely to be attractive to buyers hawking weekend-shopping fare such as movies, DVDs, or just about anything retail.
Just a question: Has People magazine ever in its history been marketed as a “friday publication”? Does Time really want to tie its cash-cow People weekly brand to a day of the week? More likely, if Time is combining the two publications’ pitch, it means “bonus” or “added value” or some other euphemism for deeply discounting space in the new publication.
That observation aside, this weblog believes that new-Life may work, but it will take lots more than the reported $20 million to get it to profitability. (Our guess: $200 million.) For starters, a publication in Friday’s newspaper should be an attractive place for the far-flung entertainment interests of Time-Warner to advertise (as long as shareholders understand how the flow of money is working). It would be a sweetly ironic development if a magazine carrying the Life brand becomes the lynchpin of a strategy that finally brings success to the whole synergy theory on which the current corporate iteration of the parent company was created.
(Disclosure: This weblog’s I.R.A. contains Time-Warner stock purchased the day it was announced Ted Turner sold his and another block purchased on the day the company announced Steve Case would be leaving.)