House & Garden Yields Bumper Crop of Ads

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House & Garden magazine raised ad pages 43 percent with its June issue, its top performance this year, capping the best six months in the shelter title's century-plus history.

The Conde Nast Publications monthly also claimed it has closed every remaining issue for 2006 with a double-digit increase.

"The success is a result of positioning the magazine in a way that truly depicts what it is about," said Jennifer Hicks, associate publisher of advertising at House & Garden, New York. "We spent time talking to women, and they wanted an elastic design that was not tailored."

The typical House & Garden reader is an affluent woman ages 35-54. The magazine features the latest in design talent, architecture and garden design.

House & Garden will boost circulation from 900,000 to 950,000 starting in January, based on the increased advertising and its 93 percent subscription renewal rate. Subscription rates also will go up commensurately. The subscription rate now for one year is $19.97.

"I think our concept has really resonated with advertisers," Ms. Hicks said. "It is all about customization, and I think our new publisher and team have excelled at that."

New advertisers in the book include Jaguar, Volvo, Infiniti, Estee Lauder, Van Cleef & Arpels, Home Depot, Lowe's, Macy's and Wal-Mart.

House & Garden also launched marketing programs to bring readers and advertisers together, such as its annual Hamptons Designer Showcase. The Aug. 15 event in Bridgehampton, NY, featured about 30 top interior, landscape and decorative designers. The team transformed a mansion offered by Burns Development Corp. The proceeds of that event benefited Southampton Hospital.

"Readers want to see how the products can work," Ms. Hicks said. "At the Hamptons Showcase they can pay $30 to view those designer rooms and see what they want."

The new advertising has let the publication increase editorial content.

"We have new sections coming up and are adding an eco-section about being green," Ms. Hicks said.

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