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British Vogue unveils key findings of its Business Report 2017

Vogue UK July 2017 ()

British Vogue has worked with YouGov for this, the tenth Business Report, establishing what the smart woman thinks in relation to the fashion, beauty and luxury media landscape today, and what sources they most trust. This is the largest Vogue commissioned survey to date by some margin, and builds on two decades of investment and insight.

Key findings

At a time of media disruption and infinite content, connections matter – it’s these connections which the busy women makes time for, and these connections which women trust and are influenced by. Notably in relation to trust, magazines and magazine websites lead the pack. When making a purchasing decision consumers were asked what outlets they trust, and magazine platforms led the field for fashion (69 per cent), making them as trusted as friends and family. Print magazines are 44 per cent more trusted than weekend supplements and almost twice as trusted as social media.  Monthly magazine websites are more than 50 per cent more trusted than either social media or other lifestyle websites.

The Vogue Business Report 2017 examined the evolution of media usage across platforms over a 12 month period. The net results highlight video showing the greatest growth, up 33 per cent, with a significant increase from older millennials (ie those 25-34.) This growth in video is exemplified by Vogue, whose award-winning content has more than 423K subscribers and over 70 million views to date. Magazine websites are showing a net increase of 25 per cent, including a higher than average result for younger millennials, those aged 20-24, whose glossy magazine habit is gaining traction. Following magazines on social shows an increase of 25 per cent (up 42 per cent amongst those aged 20-24) while 20 per cent are following bloggers and vloggers more than they were 12 months ago. There’s 19% net growth for subscribing to email newsletters, and a net increase of 11 per cent for the print monthlies, driven by millennials.      

Three quarters (75 per cent) of women in our study state they are much more focused when looking at a print magazine than when looking at any other media, underlining one of print’s unique strengths. In the battle for attention, often divided as we multitask and multiscreen in our multiplatform world, women are immersed and totally engaged when they are reading a magazine. When women encounter advertising in monthly magazines the vast majority – nine out of ten – are paying attention, and there is little difference across the age breaks. Sixty-seven per cent of Vogue’s audience actively enjoy the advertising they encounter in their favourite magazine. Meanwhile eight out of 10 notice the ads they see on magazine websites, considering them 38 per cent more informative, 50 per cent more useful, 47 per cent more relevant and 62 per cent more influential than ads on lifestyle sites. 

Eighty-seven per cent of those polled have bought at least one designer or high street fashion, premium beauty, fragrance or luxury good as a result of seeing ads in monthly magazines, and 72 per cent of all women polled have purchased having seen a similar ad on a magazine website.

The Vogue audience is particularly responsive to advertising, and there is evidence to show that advertising across Vogue’s core platforms generates higher purchase levels as a result of seeing advertising in print magazines AND on magazine websites. For those exposed to advertising in print and digital, almost 90 per cent have bought something as a direct result of seeing it advertised on one or both platforms. The uplift of adding online to magazine advertising adds 10 per cent to purchase response while adding print to online creates an uplift of 53 per cent. 

For the first time the Vogue Business Report included a study with Gen Z girls (12-18), to address their uptake of media platforms and to get a sense of what’s on the horizon for the next generation of consumers and customers.  Findings specific to Gen Z include;

  • Content largely being consumed digitally, while the older 16-18 segment are starting to form a print magazine habit.    
  • Social use largely via Instagram and Snapchat channels
  • Social is social, in addition to a means of connecting with celebs, and is a free entertainment and information source (beauty tutorials featuring heavily.) Free content offered via social channels is the route to starting a media brand habit.

Regarding social media, 66 per cent of all women polled and 79 per cent of millennials now follow their favourite titles and magazine editors socially, an important link to more magazine content. British Vogue now has a social following of more than 11 million.  On Instagram it has twice as many followers as Elle and Harper’s Bazaar combined, and on the predominantly news related twitter, Vogue’s following is far greater than Elle + Refinery 29 + Harper’s Bazaar + Marie Claire. 

The status of Vogue as the fashion bible remains, with higher results than 20 years ago, reflecting its ability to elevate the brand values of all those associated with it.

***Condé Nast International's Wolfgang Blau will be on of our featured speakers at the 41st FIPP World Congress,. The Congress takes place in London from 9-11 October. Discounted Early Bird bookings are currently available, here***

Condé Nast is a member of FIPP.

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