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'People' Magazine Rolls Out the Red Carpet

Partnerships with Gilt, Redbox promote Oscars coverage

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This Sunday night, millions of viewers will tune into the Academy Awards to find out who takes home film’s top honors—and see who makes the “Best Dressed” lists. To capitalize on the red carpet obsession, the People franchise is rolling out e-commerce and social media initiatives to put readers in the middle of the sartorial whirlwind that is the Oscars.

“Red carpet is the most anticipated coverage of the year among our readers,” People publisher Karen Kovacs told Adweek.

To capitalize on that buzz, the magazine is sending subscribers an Awards Show Special issue spotlighting the season’s best red carpet fashions. To boost newsstand sales, People struck a partnership with Redbox to give single-copy buyers a free one-night movie rental.

People also is jumping on the e-commerce bandwagon this year. People.com Stylewatch editors will curate items inspired by the evening for a “Get the Look: Red Carpet” sale on Gilt Groupe. If the content-only partnership is successful (the magazine isn’t getting any cut of sales), it could lead to further e-commerce collaborations, Kovacs said.

That red carpet frenzy is also evidenced on People.com, which gets its biggest traffic boost of the year on the day after the Oscars, according to People.com managing editor Janice Morris. In addition to covering the event's fashion moments, People.com is encouraging readers to interact with the site through a live blog on the site and social media.

Last year’s live trivia competition will return to People.com, but it will feature a new Facebook tie-in that lets participants play with their friends. Pinterest boards focusing on Oscars and red carpet fashion will be updated with photos from the evening. And People’s Twitter account will promote People.com content and encourage people to make their own best-dressed lists.