BBC blames itself for stalled Star launch

BBC Worldwide’s new teen title Star:the celebrity magazine failed to attract advertisers to its debut edition because it left the launch announcement too late, according to its publisher.

The title managed to attract some traditional consumer advertisers such as Mars’ Galaxy Caramel and cosmetics brand Maybelline for the 12 pages of ads, but most came from film and record companies which are more likely to book at short notice. The pagination of the title was 100 pages.

BBC Worldwide associate publisher youth group Alfie Lewis says the magazine only got the official go-ahead this summer, after BBC children’s brand Live & Kicking had decided to do a celebrity programming strand. Lewis says: “The ad team had very little time to sell the magazine. Advertising that is appearing in this autumn’s magazines was planned about eight months ago.

“We knew that to get on most of the autumn schedules we were too late.”

MindShare press buying director Paul Thomas says: “I’m surprised it didn’t get more advertising but it is in a difficult market.”

Thomas felt that because the title only announced its October 18 a few months before, little time had been left to sell space.

He says: “If you launch anything very, very late then you are always going to struggle to get advertising in.”

Sally Cartwright, publishing director of Hello! magazine, says: “I didn’t think there was very much advertising. I don’t know how this concept is going to go down with advertisers.”

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here