The Times will spend up to 10m on advertising and redesigning its Saturday edition, with the bulk of the spend going behind a relaunched Saturday glossy lifestyle magazine.
Nick Wapshott, editor of The Times on Saturday, says: “It will be the kind of magazine that people will take back to the newsagents thinking they have picked it up by mistake, without paying for it.”
He says it will be printed on high-quality glossy paper with a guarantee of at least 100 pages each week.
The editorial emphasis will be on lifestyle issues of interest to women, for instance fashion and interior design.
“It will look like a cross between Vanity Fair and The New Yorker,” says Wapshott.
The title will be the fulcrum of an advertising campaign for The Times on Saturday which will break in January. It is understood the campaign, together with the relaunch costs of the magazine, will cost at least 10m. Last year, The Times spent 6.6m on advertising. Its agency is Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe.
News International has been tweaking The Times on Saturday package throughout this year. In September, it launched a 52-page tabloid entertainment listings supplement called Metro. At the same time, TV listings were moved into a restyled magazine, entitled Vision.
One media buyer says: “I would certainly back the idea of this new-look Times Magazine. It is desperately needed – I think NI will have looked at what Associated Newspapers is doing with You magazine and have decided it is getting away with blue murder [with the women’s interest market virtually sewn up].”