Glamour embraces digital, drops regular print edition

Glamour Editor-In-Chief Samantha Barry announced the change in an email to staff

Glamour, the fashion and beauty magazine popular with young women, is ditching its monthly print editions and embracing the online revolution, its chief editor and publishers Conde Nast announced Tuesday.

As Conde Nast navigates choppy waters for print media, Glamour's 37-year-old editor-in-chief Samantha Barry announced the change in an email to staff, saying that special print editions would still be released.

"We're going to move off of a monthly print schedule, but please know this does not mean we are ceasing print entirely," she wrote.

"We're going to use print the way our audiences do -- to celebrate big moments, like Women of the Year, with special issues that are ambitious, lush and have longevity," she added.

The focus on digital investment will expand the magazine's video and social story telling.

It comes after the Conde Nast empire -- which includes glossies Vanity Fair and Vogue, and which reportedly lost $120 million last year -- has already scrapped regular print editions for Teen Vogue and Self.

Rival publishing company Hearst also announced recently that its magazine Seventeen would cut down its print editions to special editions only.

"In print we reach two million readers, but when you look at our digital footprint, we reach 20 million Glamour fans," wrote Barry.

She said audience traffic was up 12 percent year-on-year at the magazine's website, with social engagement up 27 percent year-on-year and YouTube followers up 111 percent year-on-year.

Online access to Glamour will remain free, for now.

Barry, an Irish digital journalist, took over at Glamour in January. The magazine, which first launched in the United States as Glamour of Hollywood in 1939, is on the cusp of celebrating its 80th year.

"This is my plan, because it makes sense," Barry told The New York Times in an interview. "It's where the audiences are, and it's where our growth is. That monthly schedule, for a Glamour audience, doesn't make sense anymore."

Barry was previously head of social media at CNN.

Bob Sauerberg, chief executive of Conde Nast, gave her his full backing.

"Glamour has grown and expanded from a successful print brand that connected with readers once a month to an always-on brand that is in constant conversation with its audience on all platforms," he wrote to staff.

"That's today's Glamour -- connecting with women wherever they are."