For Hard Core Fashionistas, It’s Print All the Way

For Net-a-porter, their VIP customers are overwhelming fans of print.

Before high-end digital retailer Net-a-Porter launched their flagship print magazine Porter, they did the research required to make such a bold move.

As Joe Lazauskas explains in Contently, newly-hired VP of publishing and media Tess Macleod Smith “set out to conduct a comprehensive study of 10,000 of their valuable customers to find out how they consumed fashion content. Eighty-eight percent said a fashion magazine was their preferred medium, and 80 percent said their most authoritative inspiration for fashion was print.”

This was in 2012, and three years later they have proven that consistently high quality content combined with shoppable pages is a big win – for the company and its customers.

“Shoppability is really what sets Porter apart from its competition. The app versions of the magazine let readers instantly shop as they read, and in many cities, purchases arrive the same day,” Lazauskas writes.

“But just as crucial is how the print magazine appeals to the elite one percent of customers who make up 20 percent of the company’s revenue. Net-a-Porter calls these customers EIPs, or extremely important people, and treats them to personal shopping services as well as access to top collections before the general public,” he continues.

“Macleod said that 85 percent of top customers were inspired to shop after reading an issue of Porter, and those who become subscribers increased their spend by 125 percent and their frequency on the site by 25 percent,” Lazauskas adds.

The Porter magazine story is a text-book case of bold thinking, unflinching audience research and highly targeted distribution to their “perfect” readers. We love seeing this kind of smart thinking and outstanding publishing, and expect the Porter story to continue to unfold beautifully.