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W supplement proves valuable real estate for June issue

May 31, 2012


Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Yves Saint Laurent and other luxury advertisers took to the pages of both the June issue of Condé Nast’s W and its supplement “Trends” magazine to double the reach of ad campaigns.

While Chanel and Cartier drew eyes by being the first and last ads in the issue, a few luxury brands decided to double-up on exposure and take out ad space in both publications. These placements could work for luxury brands when their ads align with the theme of the supplement.

“When approached correctly, magazine supplements can be a good advertising tool for luxury brands,” said Courtney Albert, brand strategist at Parker Avery, Atlanta.

“The advertisements should tie into the theme of the supplement, just as it would to the editorial content of the magazine,” she said. “For example, if the magazine is focused on trends for a particular season, it only makes sense that the advertisements would feature those trends.

“This gives the reader a new way of understanding how she or he can adopt that trend, hopefully by buying into the brand.”

Ms. Albert is not affiliated with W, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.

W could not comment before press deadline.

Supplemental style

Key editorial in this issue includes a "Guitar Hero," the cover story on Tom Cruise's new role in Rock of Ages.

W included a 46-page supplement to its June issue called “Trends” that was the same size as the traditionally larger magazine and contained ads by brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Prada, Christian Dior, Bergdorf Goodman, Ulysse Nardin and Valentino.

Trends supplement 

The supplement was split into sections by trends including Sporty, Future, Country, Pastels, Twenties and Say it with Color.

Luxury ads showing brand extensions by Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, YSL and Prada were in front-of-book.

Dolce & Gabbana printed its lipstick ad with actress Monica Bellucci in a two-page spread starting on the front inside cover. Ms. Bellucci wore a deep lip shade on the left page and six shades of lipstick stand on the right.

Dolce & Gabbana ad 

In addition, Gucci positioned its eyewear ad as the second two-page spread.

The ad shows a close-up image of the label’s spring/summer campaign that contains a woman and man wearing sunglasses on the right. Another woman in heavy eye makeup is on the left page.

Gucci ad 

Yves Saint Laurent is pushing its Vernis à Lèvres lip color in a two-page spread that says, “Gloss? Stain? Lipstick? Stop compromising and have it all.”

YSL ad

Prada took out a one-page ad to show its retro-style campaign for its Candy fragrance.

Next, Dior’s women’s timepiece ad campaign with Charlize Theron is shown in the Sport section. The actress wears a silver watch by the label.

In addition, New York-based retailer Bergdorf Goodman took out an ad just before the Future section to display a page from its 32-page spring jewelry book that presented pieces from new designer collections (see story).

Bergdorf ad 

Two gold necklaces by Sylva & Cie. are shown on a brown rock. These necklaces feature a haphazard green emerald pendent and two skeleton pendants.

Valentino also placed an ad for its Valentina fragrance that it has been pushing in many high-end publications.

“The more a reader views a particular advertisement, there is a better chance that the brand and message is remembered,” Ms. Albert said. “It is a smart decision for brands such as Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent cosmetics to have the same ads featured in both the magazine and the supplement because it delivers one unified message instead of expecting the reader to make that connection that it is the same brand.

“This is the same thought process behind why luxury brands tend to use the same models or photographers over multiple campaigns,” she said. “There is a face or a feel of the brand that is instantly recognizable once the reader flips the page.”

Readers saw the same ads for Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent and Dolce & Gabbana in front-of-book of the main magazine as well as ads identical ads from Dorchester Collection and beauty brand Korres.

The same Dorchester Collection ad within the Twenties section of the supplement appeared mid-magazine.

The ad showed a woman in a long gold dress holding a larger-than-life picture frame. The background is the Le Meurice, Paris, skyline.

In addition, a Korres facial cream ad appeared on the back inside cover, which was also next to the beginning of the Say It With Color section in the Trends supplement.

Meanwhile, French label Chanel started off the issue with a four-page spread of its new black-and-white fall/winter 2012 ad campaign. The same ad appeared first in the latest issue of Condè Nast’s Vogue (see story).

The images show a model covered in strings of stones and pearls, including a headpiece and an earring that connects to a nose ring.

On the first two pages, she is sitting on the floor of a bar. On the next pages she is standing with her arms outstretched.

Chanel ad 

Cartier took up the back cover of the issue to show a piece from its Panthère de Cartier collection. The ad features a necklace hanging over a red jewelry boxes on a deep red background.

Cartier ad 

Other advertisers include Christian Dior, Tiffany & Co., Fendi and Faberge.

“Since W is a luxury magazine, there is a sort of symbiotic relationship that exists between advertisers and publishers,” Ms. Albert said.

“Luxury advertisers need a platform to communicate with their target consumers and, by featuring predominantly luxury advertisements, W is signaling that that not only is it an appropriate forum, but it will also draw in the appropriate readers,” she said.

Final Take
Tricia Carr, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York