Ever since I stopped wearing bright pink eyeshadow to match my bright pink barbie shoe laces I have been interested in Magazines and Glamour Magazine was the one for me! Even if I was a little too young and would often skip past anything that mentioned ‘sex’ because I was proud of my innocence… Glamour had it all, from what was hot on the runways and the high-street versions to the best beauty buys of the month!
My personal favourite was always the “Hey It’s Ok…” piece, if you ever picked up a Glamour mag, you know exactly what I am on about, if not, it was a one page piece that simply listed things like “Hey its Ok… to use dry shampoo three days in a row because sometimes you’re just too busy to take a shower” or “Hey its Ok… if your totally fantastic outfit is (shh!) just jeans and a t-shirt!”
Even at the age of 13 I was pairing outfits together from the magazine with things in my wardrobe that looked “just like” (nothing like) what was on the page and searching for “rainy weather outfits” – I was really quite obsessed with going out in the rain in a “rainy day outfit” and getting absolutely drenched when in actual fact, the reality was that I was walking along the street cold, wearing jeans, boots and a cropped leather jacket juggling an annoying handbag and an umbrella. What I am saying is, I never had an older sister who’s clothes I could steal and who’s advice I could twist in my head so she actually said what I wanted her to say but i did have Glamour.
So to find out the news that Glamour is having to hold up both hands and say “we can’t do this anymore” is pretty sad for me. See, Glamour recently announced that they were no longer going to be putting out monthly issues of the mag for our corner shops to stock and for us to run in buy a bar of chocolate and a copy and head home to comfy sofas and beds for some chillaxing time (yes, i did just say that…)
A spokeswoman told the BBC the “mobile-first, social-first” move with a focus on beauty was based on how readers are “living their life today” which is pretty smart and very obvious if you think about it… i know that even my readership has become less and less loyal over recent years, only picking up a copy if i had a particular chocolate bar in mind to go along with it and only really reading it if i was bored of my youtube sub box and had scrolled through Bloglovin enough times to have read everything for the past 6 months. This move was inevitable, i personally think that Cosmo were on it straight away, as soon as the internet became a thing they had a decent website then when social media took over the world Cosmo when right a long with it, one of their smartest moves being to jump on snapchat. Now don’t lie, we’ve all had one of those particularly boring Sunday afternoons or Wednesday nights when we’ve found ourself tapping through the Cosmo snapchat story news, i have done it, you have, but where is Glamour!? Even The Sun newspaper is on that.
This new move to focus much more on the online world is very smart and very necessary, but it could totally make or break them!
If Glamour plays its cards right, produces valuable content that is genuinely engaging and doesn’t slack because its “only an instagram” then they can keep making money in lots of ways whilst keeping their loyal readers. If they give you a decent article for example, but it comes with a tutorial if you pay x amount of money a month as part of a subscription that gives you access to a whole bunch of other stuff too then great! Blogosphere have the right idea by making sure their subscriptions are giving first access to the mag itself, as well as a video of the main interview, more photos, access to events etc etc etc, it makes it worth it! But if you’re paying for what ends up being something you could get ANYWHERE else for free then you’re not going to continue paying for much longer are you?
Traditional media has a bad history of discrediting the online world and its creators, if Glamour follows this trend and doesn’t quickly learn how valuable a retweet or a picture of someone holding their actual magazine issue in their hands is then sooner rather than later they’ll be as irrelevant as crocs… maybe even less so because crocs still manages to piss people off!
While we are on the subject of valuable content, Glamour has a lot more resources at its disposal than the average beauty blogger, which means that they can not only create engaging and interesting things to watch and read but they can also make sure its educational and worth your time more than someone like me might be able to. However, if they get too caught up in trying to get that oh so valuable retweet i worry that magazine journalism will fall off the list of their top priorities! Magazines tend to have a particular writing style in general and then a different tone within each magazine itself, whats different from reading a magazine to a blog? Not all bloggers have developed that tone or writing style, some of my favourite blog posts i have written have been inspired by articles I’ve read in places like Glamour and Cosmo!
If Glamour are willing to learn the ropes of this online thing properly, bring value to its readers because their time is their time, they could always look at another article and make sure that they are giving you a reason to pay for a subscription then I don’t see why they can’t be super successful, make the money they need to make through ads and subscriptions and still keep a loyal readership following! But they have to appreciate the fact that even though they have all the resources in the world, people like to follow people and if someone doesn’t feel a personal relationship with someone online or they don’t get value from their content, they won’t be around for long!