Homes magazines can survive in print while having online presence, suggests Bauer Media publisher

The publisher of Bauer Media’s homes titles has emphasised the importance of the printed magazine within the category, rejecting the idea that its homes online hub, Homes to Love, has diluted the printed magazine’s value.

Cornelia Schulze, Bauer Media’s specialist division publisher, told Mumbrella: “The print product is absolutely important but it is part of a broader brand offering. The market is tough but we’ve got an offering across the four brands that covers the whole journey in the homes market.

“Whether it’s social, digital, events, merchandising range, it’s about bringing the brand alive and making it tangible and going beyond the magazine. It starts with the magazine but it doesn’t end there anymore.”

Cornelia Schulze

Cornelia Schulze: ‘Not worried’ about the future of the printed magazine

Schulze said there is “no question about it” that the homes category can live online.

“You have to take a different spin on what you put into the mag and what you use and put online,” she said.

“Part of a path to purchase study that we’ve done recently was that when you look at the intent of a person using magazines versus online channels. For magazines, inspiration was four times more important than for online and with online activation is four times more important than for the magazines.

“One is really about the inspiration: finding what I didn’t even know what I was looking for and becoming part of an initial consideration set for a purchase. Online is moving closer to actually doing the deed. That is something we are taking into account and something you’ll see more of on Homes to Love.”

House & Gardens

Schulze said she is “not worried” about the future of the printed magazines.

“I don’t think these magazines will become, in their print format, unviable simply because they are giving you something that you will have a hard time finding anywhere else and that is the immersion and inspiration that people are increasingly accepting as what print has to offer,” she said.

“I’m not at all worried about the future of those brands in print because they have become a brand with a true 360-offering.”

According to the most recent circulation figures, Belle had a circulation of 41,287, House and Garden had a circulation of 94,028, Real Living posted a circulation of 66,142 and Homes+ reported a circulation of 40,235.

The publisher has recently changed its approach to Homes To Love – which launched in September last year –  adding the masthead brands at the top of the navigation in an effort to give them more value online.

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“You need to give an environment where a brand really comes to life and you do cater to a the ‘sub-cluster’ within an audience. The magazines do cater to distinct target groups and a Homes+ reader is very different to a Belle reader and that is something we’ll increasingly reflect online,” she said.

On what’s coming next for the Bauer homes category – Belle is set to launch its first ever Chinese edition, which comes out at the end of September following the launch of Bauer Media’s Harper’s Bazaar and Australian Gourmet Traveller Chinese New Year editions in September last year.


“It is tapping into a market that is increasingly in the focus of advertising clients,” she said.

“We’re also going to publish another one-shop in conjunction with Belle, but I’m pretty confident it will turn into something more regular. It’s going to be called Belle Smart Spaces and what it’s all about is its addressing a trend towards premium apartment living, true to the core of the Belle brand.”

The company is also diversifying its distribution strategy for the homes category with Real Living and Homes+ to be both sold in Bunnings while House & Garden is set to be sold in Myer.

“We’re going to sell House & Garden in Myer stores in conjunction with the merchandising range, which is going to be wonderful. There will be new products added to that range, more details to follow but it’s already in the design phase,” explained Schulze.

Bauer Media has also appointed an editor for Homes+ filling the void left by Deborah Bibby, who also edited Real Living, who left the company in April to join Medium Rare Content.

Sue Wheeler joins Bauer Media as editor of Homes+

Sue Wheeler joins Bauer Media as editor of Homes+

Sue Wheeler has been appointed as editor of Homes+, joining the publication from Pacific Magazines where she was the editor-in-chief of Women’s Health and Prevention until September last year.

“We’re very happy to have her on the the team,” Schulze said.

In July the publishing company revealed it had appointed Woman’s Day associate editor Emma Vidgen as editor of Real Living.

On why Bibby was replaced with two people, Schulze said:”It’s about the very clear and conscious positioning of those brands and giving them a dedicated team for further growth.”


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