Glossy launch goes deeper than gossip and celebrities

By Alyson Fixter

A women’s glossy with no celebrities, no shopping guides and no
fashion in it is due to be launched by Hachette Filipacchi, which
claims it will open up an entirely new magazine market.

Psychologies, a version of the French title of the same name, will
hit UK newsstands in September, and will be edited by Maureen Rice,
former editor of Options and 19 magazines and prelaunch consultant on
In Style and Eve.

The magazine has already been dubbed a
“self-help” glossy by commentators, although Hachette insists “positive
living” is a better description.

It aims to tap into a market of
35-to- 55-year-olds who are unsatisfied with current women’s magazines,
by offering guidance on “strategies for a richer life and better
relationships”.

Psychologies is also published in Italy and
Spain. The title is 35 years old and is the second best selling women’s
magazine in France, behind Marie Claire. It will be the first launch by
Hachette Filipacchi UK, which was formed in 2002.

Editor-in-chief
Rice, who has been working on the development of Psychologies for the
past six months, also writes for the Mail on Sunday’s You magazine and
The Observer magazine.

Rice said: “Psychologies is a women’s
magazine with no fashion, no shopping guides, no gossip and no columns
by women writers with a wry take on their domestic or romantic lives –
how can it be anything but a success?

“It’s the first launch in a
long time that can genuinely claim to be innovative rather than
derivative, and I’m very excited to be part of it from the beginning.”

The
French version of the title features well-being, work, family and
behaviour sections. In the UK, it will compete with recent Condé Nast
launch Easy Living and National Magazines’ long-lived Good Housekeeping.

A
spokeswoman said Psychologies would reflect a new kind of female
reader. “These women’s lives have changed radically,” she said.

“Affluence, longevity and social change have turned the old patterns of opportunity, expectation and life stage upside down.

“Having
achieved so much socially and economically, European women are now
engaged in a more personal revolution: in a world of unprecedented
choice, what do they really want?

“How do they want to live, behave and connect with other people?

“Psychologies is about what they’re like, not just what they look like.”

Julie
Harris, general manager of Hachette Filipacchi UK’s Women’s Group,
said: “Our extensive research over the last 18 months has shown that
there is a very strong consumer desire for this magazine in the UK.”

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