Newsweek Daily Beast’s New President Starts to Make Mark

Newsweekly showing ad traction vs. soft 2010

A few weeks into his new role as president of the Newsweek Daily Beast Co., Rob Gregory is starting to make his mark, promoting Maria Eliason to global ad director of fashion and luxury from ad director.

Fashion and luxury advertising categories aren't strongly associated with news magazines. When Time magazine decided to go after that business, it did so in the form of a separate publication, the quarterly Time Style & Design. Style & Design folded in 2009 after six years.

Newsweek has taken a different route to glam up its ad pages. When Tina Brown took over as editor, she changed the magazine itself, adding cultural and lifestyle coverage and making it look more sophisticated.

Along those lines, the Newsweek Daily Beast Co. co-hosted a dinner Sept. 29 featuring Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts as the speaker, which got a flattering, 1,400-word write-up on the Beast the following day.

Overall, Newsweek’s year-over-year ad page growth started out the year soft. But it’s made some progress since then, helped by the fact that its business was at a low point last year, when it faced a prolonged sales process and questions about its viability. The Oct. 3 issue, the first of the fourth quarter, carried 17 ad pages, versus 14 in the year-ago issue, according to the magazine.