Alyce Alston and Joe Zee of Fairchild (she's group publisher, he's the current resident genius) told me wondrous things over a Four Seasons lunch. Their W, fat and slick as ever, sold more than 2,000 ad pages in 2004, up about 5% from '03, 2,070 pages compared to 1,966, and was their all-time high in ad revenue. By comparison, Vogue this year ran 3,010 ad pages, In Style 3,328, Harper's Bazaar 1,521 and Elle 1,152. Alyce says advertisers salivate over their online W Luxe Shop and a luxury shopping series that will run four times a year. They threw a celebratory party last month that featured fashionably garbed elephants (Joe's idea and don't ask me to explain it!). Vitals, launched in September, seems to be doing fine with an early guaranteed 200,000 rate base. They call it "a brand that provides luxury and lifestyle infused with celebrity coverage, with an unapologetic and unwavering focus on service." Or as Joe says more bluntly, "concierge treatment and stuff you want." Next Feb. 15 they'll launch their premiere issue of Vitals Woman, which will alternate every other month with Vitals Man. Most vital of all, Joe shipped off the first Vitals to John Fairchild in London, where he lurks these days. John gave a magisterial nod and told Joe not to change a thing. Mary Berner can probably explain all this.
Links, the Hilton Head-based golf mag from Jack Purcell, was up 14% in ad pages in 2004. Purcell credits the Tim Carr redesign. He also reports a couple of Peter Diamandis sightings.
Jack Moffly says my Nov. 15 ref to his Greenwich area regional mags drew several offers to buy his books. But, said happy Jack, "They're not for sale."
Good luck to Donny Deutsch's CNBC talk show. But we'll all miss McEnroe's warmth and wit.
Backpacker (Rodale) increases its rate base again to 310,000. And sister pub Runner's World, 15% ahead in ad pages for the year, boosts its rate base the ninth time in 10 years to 600,000.
Self mag will up the rate base by 50,000 to 1.35 million in March. Publisher Kimberly Kelleher says both readers and marketers "are responding to the modern, sophisticated new design and award-winning content."
Alarming news from Langan's, the Manhattan pub where New York Post and Fox TV folks drink: Steve Dunleavy is said to be on the wagon.