Magazines set for royal baby bonanza with Bauer Media predicts $1m circulation boost

Woman’s Day Royal baby special for the arrival of George in 2013

Women’s lifestyle magazines are gearing up for a sales and readership bonanza following the birth of the second royal baby – and publishers will be additionally grateful that Prince George has a sister.

While interest was always going to be high, the arrival of a girl for William and Kate will provide an extra boost as the Australian public swoon over a new royal Princess.

The baby arrived on Saturday and was named overnight as Charlotte Elizabeth Diana.

Bauer Media’s Woman’s Day was the first to announce it will produce a special “souvenir issue”, with 34 pages dedicated to the royal birth, including including “the princess’s adorable first meeting with her big brother George”, a celebration of royal babies and a “stunning tribute to the new princess’s grandmother, the late Diana, Princess of Wales”.

It will go on sale on Thursday.

Woman’s Day Editor-in-Chief Fiona Connolly said, “A royal baby doesn’t come along every day, let alone a real-life princess – it’s an event that deserves to be celebrated in a way that only a magazine such as Woman’s Day can deliver.”

Australian Women’s Weekly news editor Bryce Corbett said only the pomp and ceremony of a royal wedding can trump a royal birth.

“We produced a commemorative issue following the arrival of baby George and readership went up between 50 per cent and 70 per cent,” he said.

“There is something enduring about the fairytale aspects of the royal family and it cuts across all demographics. The perception is that it would be more popular with the older readers but they are extremely popular with the younger readers as well.”

He said the sex of the baby will also have an impact. “There will be something of a novelty factor and the idea of a princess will capture people’s imagination,” Corbett said.

Lousia Hatfield, editor in chief of New Idea confirmed the publication was stepping up its print run and said the public will be particularly excited at the arrival of a Princess.

“There will be higher than normal sales,” she said, listing royal weddings as the biggest driver of additional sales, followed by royal babies, celebrity weddings and then celebrity births.

“I don’t think there is quite the interest second time around purely because the first time is always more exciting, whether it’s a Princess, Queen or a Joanne Bloggs from Sydney,” Hatfield said.

But she predicted the nation will “get more excited” that William and Kate have a girl, partly because women are drawn to stories about females.

“That’s why we put women on the front cover,” Hatfield said.

Bauer Media director of sales Tony Kendall said the coverage could rake in an additional $1m in circulation revenue. Unique visits to its Women’s Weekly and Woman’s Day websites are also expected to soar by 25 per cent.

“It’s a pretty big event. When baby George arrived circulation grew 30 per cent for Woman’s Day and Women’s Weekly,” he said.

Pacific Magazines chief executive Peter Zavecz declined to put a figure on any sales uplife.

“Our readers, who are predominantly women, love a royal birth although in reality this is not the heir to the throne,” he said. “That said, it is an exciting event for all our readers and magazines herald these historic events far better than any other medium.”

Steve Jones


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