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A reinvigorated Tatler celebrates circulation success

What's New in Publishing 09 Oct 2019 06:45

British high society and culture magazine Tatler has undergone some dramatic changes over the past year, driven by changes in the leadership team. With the wealthiest readership of all Conde Nast’s publications, the ‘toff bible’ has a unique set of challenges to maintain growth, and ensure they’re reaching the right audience online.

The changes have paid off, with an increase in the magazine’s circulation, and also online where digital revenues have almost doubled since 2017.

This week, Media Voices caught up with Tatler’s Publishing Director Kate Slesinger, who has overseen Tatler and Vanity Fair for just over two years. With over 25 years working on various Conde titles, including House & Garden and Conde Nast Traveller, she has seen her role evolve from obsessing daily about print to dealing with all forms of revenue coming in on the magazine.

Celebrating circulation growth

Over the past year, Tatler has had a circulation boost, with total print and digital circulation up 1.3% year on year to over 79,000. Slesinger credits much of this to Richard Dennen, who came in as editor in 2018 and almost instantly made changes to the contributors, the site and the magazine itself.

For newsstand copies, covers are a vital way of enticing new readers. “A lot of it is based on the cover,” said Slesinger. “If they like the experience, then they will repeat buy. But to get new users to the brand, we’ve had to really make a sea change to the covers.”

The supplements are also lucrative. 75% of Tatler’s readers own high-end watches or jewellery, and spend over £1.7 billion on such items each year. 97% consider themselves as ‘luxury travellers’, taking on average 7 trips abroad each year. Almost all of them own designer fashion. So it’s easy to see why dedicated supplements appeal to high-end advertisers, when they reach an audience with such spending power behind them.

Slesinger’s challenge for Tatler now is keeping ahead of the game, and looking for every angle on bringing in revenue. “I think you’ve got to just take risks,” she said. “You can’t just fall back on what has always been.”

“It had massive engagement online, and lots of click throughs for Chopard, which was great. So I want to do more of that.”

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TatlerKate SlesingerTatlerRichard DennenTatler UK