Gruner & Jahr has reduced the price of its new gossip weekly, Here!, because of disappointing sales.
The magazine, which launched at 70p in June, went on sale this week at 35p – returning to the first issue’s price. It is being promoted on TV and will stay at 35p for only two weeks.
G&J offered advertisers guaranteed sales of 400,000 for the first three months’ issues, but has been printing close to 800,000 copies and had hopes of a higher circulation. It is believed to be selling between 300,000 and 400,000.
Agency press buyers believe the title has been unable to convince magazine buyers that it is a cheaper competitor to Hello! and OK! rather than an expensive rival to traditional women’s weekly titles. IPC cut the price of its Woman and Woman’s Own magazines from 55p to 35p for one week when Here! launched.
“It was a mistake to make it look very similar to the traditional women’s weekly, with a red and white masthead,” says one press buyer.
“It needs more sampling,” says G&J managing director Holger Wiemann. “People need to see it and compare it with classic women’s weeklies. It will return to 70p.”
IPC says it has no plans to cut the price of its women’s weeklies in response to the G&J move.
G&J has reorganised its advertising sales team to include Here! magazine. Annette Burns, advertising controller on Best, has been given responsibility for Here! with Rebecca Hobbs as advertising manager of both titles.