Bella Price: Cluttered Cover Works for Time Inc.'s All You

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NEW YORK--Bella Price likes clutter on her magazine's cover.

As editor in chief of All You, Time Inc.'s newest magazine, Price knows her audience well. Lots of cover lines on the mostly newsstand All You conveys a sense of urgency for the magazine's value-conscious readers.

"It tells the reader in the checkout line this is a value magazine," Price told an audience of circulators attending the 20th Annual DMA Circulation Day.

The monthly All You offers easily digested tips and articles on fashion, beauty, health, food and women's issues. There is no editorial well. The book, put together on a tight budget for editorial and pictures, debuted on Wal-Mart news racks August 2004.

While All You readers got the magazine's personality, advertisers and ad agencies took a longer time to understand the concept -- interesting, given that Time Inc. is the world's largest magazine publisher. But it is gaining traction under publisher Diane Oshin, whose job is part selling and part educating.

"It's a fresh take for a whole new generation of shoppers who were very promiscuous [and] who shop across several magazines," Price said.

Price learned a lot from her readers since the magazine's launch. For instance, they don't like jump pages. So All You has no jump pages to make it an easier read. Readers also like tip strips and the reality checklist features, which they can clip for future use.

Getting the tone right for her readers is key for Price and her team. All articles must come across as written by real women for readers like them. Puns are banned. And the typography is a mixed serif face to denote both classic and modern.

The cover is paramount for a magazine almost totally dependent on newsstand sales. All You accepts subscriptions now -- 12 issues for $21.24, or $1.77 a copy -- but its fate is decided each month on the racks.

Price said her philosophy is not to work from the image outwards, but taking into consideration both the cover lines, the model, drop-in images and the several color palettes. The overall impression is what influences her most in selecting the final cover.

"There has to be something that sums up the emotion," Price said.

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