IPC Connect’s mature women’s weekly, Woman, has ‘challenged the monopoly’of big celebrity titles such as Hello and OK by running its first celebrity wedding.
The title, which underwent a £3.2 million relaunch in May 2006, secured the deal of Loose Women star (and Woman columnist) Coleen Nolan’s wedding in a bid to boost its celebrity content and turn around the decline in sales.
The editor of Woman, Jackie Hatton, told Press Gazette: ‘As far as I’m aware it’s a first for the mainstream woman’s market. Weddings have been the province of the Hellos and OKs of this world, and we relaunched last year to bring the title bang up-to-date and embrace the market trends. Once you start looking at celebrity and the ways that celebrity is covered across the media, the big attention grabbers are the big events – the births, the weddings, and the engagement parties.”
A team of 10 editorial staff worked to produce the coverage within 24 hours of the ceremony. Hatton said Woman is now hoping to feature more weddings in the future.
Woman has experienced a steady decline in circulation over the last five years. Its most recent ABC circulation figure, for the first half of this year, was 369,982, down from 417,362 in the same period in 2006.
Hatton said that despite the changes to the title, it is still targeting the same women as before the relaunch.
‘We’ve recognised that the ordinary women of Britain are a lot more interested in celebrity news than they once were,” she said.
We’re in quite a challenging market, three years ago things weren’t looking particularly healthy for Woman though we weren’t out of step – the market had been hit by real life and celebrity titles. I think it’s fair to say we have robustly rallied since we relaunched. It is a bit like stopping a huge ship and turning it around, but I’m confident in the future of the title.”