World: Medium of the week - The Economist gets a lifestyle with annual launch

Intelligent Life appeals to a wider advertiser base than its parent, Lucy Aitken says. The Economist Group, renowned for its speculation on world markets and politics, is branching out by launching a glossy, consumer-biased annual. Next week, Intelligent Life will appear across Europe as a sister title to The Economist Group's end-of-year annual, The World In.

Intelligent Life's strapline is "trends for smarter living" and the editorial will focus on trends in design, food, fashion, cars, technology, work, health and wealth. The idea is to bring the speculative nature of The World In series to lifestyle trends. Intelligent Life will elaborate on trendy holiday destinations (space, apparently) or the latest fashions (clothes made from fibre that doesn't crease). It will also carry contributions by guest writers such as the tennis player Roger Federer. The editor is Nick Valery, who previously edited The Economist's Technology Quarterly section.

The Economist Group is eager to attract a younger and more female audience with the launch: the readership of The Economist is about 90 per cent male. It hopes to be a magnet for brands with more of a consumer bias than The Economist's traditional advertiser base. Airlines, technology companies, cars, hotels and watches are expected to make up the lion's share.

The Economist's publisher, David Hanger, says: "It's the kind of thing you'd want to pick up more than once. There's a good cross-section: luxury goods, health, travel, but all covered from a slightly different angle."

Media agencies have welcomed the launch. Adrian Smith, the director of international at MediaCom, says: "It's a great idea. As a weekly, The Economist doesn't really have any sections that are overtly lifestyle." In fact, Smith is so enthusiastic about the launch that he laments its frequency. "They're missing a trick by not bringing it out quarterly."

Smith's only real gripe with the launch is the title. Apparently, what to call the annual was the subject of many a heated, yet gentlemanly, debate at The Economist HQ, but Smith is dismissive of the final decision.

"I don't know what I would have called it," he says. "But I wouldn't have called it that. It's hardly pizzazz."

Title: Intelligent Life

Publisher: The Economist Group

Launch date: 24 June 2004

Cover price: £4.50

Print run: 150,000

Distribution: Newsstand

Typical reader: Upscale European holiday-makers

Full-page ad rate: (four colour) £12,800 (UK and Europe); £7,200 (UK only)

Typical advertisers: Emirates, BMW, Fidelity

Rival publications: Fashionweek (Businessweek), FT (How To Spend It),

Time (Style & Design)

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