Why So Many Retailers are Turning to Print

fottJust selling products these days isn’t enough… the truly successful retailers are selling a lifestyle.

It’s been called the “secret weapon” of luxury retailers, as more and more online merchants turn to editorial content, and particularly print magazines, to help create sales.

“It seems just selling product isn’t enough these days – you have to sell a lifestyle, too,” notes Alec Leach in HighSnobiety.

Take, for example, MR PORTER. “The luxury retailer houses everything from avant-garde Parisian labels to meticulously crafted Italian tailoring and premium lifestyle products, alongside a weekly-updated online journal and print mag which brings their goods to life,” Leach explains.

According to MR. PORTER’S U. S. editor Dan Rookwood, it’s working.

“The whole idea is to combine content and commerce – and to do so in a way that each supports the other…we know from our analytics that this works because readers of our content are higher spenders than non-readers,” Rookwood notes.

Japanese importer HAVEN has similar reasons for launching into print, with their intelligence Magazine online journal and upcoming print magazine.

“We have really strong relationships with a lot of industry leaders that weren’t getting the shine they deserved. Creating our own content helped tell their stories and brand identity,” the store’s co-founder Arthur Chmielewski told Leach.

It’s those stories that help to captivate and engage the consumers, as they see themselves fitting into this content in ways that speak to their life goals and image of themselves. As marketing becomes more and more about storytelling, we’ll continue to see brands evolve in this way as purveyors of a particular lifestyle.

MR PORTER‘s Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Langmead predicts that “more and more retail ventures are going to be launching magazines — print or digital, or both,” according to Leach, calling this the “publishing model of the future” for the luxury fashion sector.