Commercial Editoral Director, Stylist
Since launching Stylist 13 years ago, (I was launch Deputy editor and then Editor of the magazine), there have been vast changes to the media landscape. We all know what they are. But much more interesting is the even bigger changes to our audience. Ambitious, urban 30-somethings who a decade ago were watching The Apprentice and climbing the career ladder, are now jumping off that very ladder and making personal fulfilment the key marker of success. That’s quite a shift.
We are now two years into ‘The Transformative ‘20’s’: a decade of personal metamorphosis kickstarted by the pandemic. This is the decade that changes everything – climate, consumerism, work, happiness… Our entire world is being redefined and most of us are busy reflecting, readdressing and rebuilding. Fifty four percent of Stylist women don’t want their life to be the same as it was at the start of 2020 – and they have every intention of making sure it isn’t.
As a PR, you must be wondering how you can meaningfully engage with one of the UK’s most powerful demographics, when they are going through such a massive time of reassessment? At Stylist we are constantly asking ourselves the same thing. Our covers and concepts have always reflected what’s going on in our audience’s heads, and the aim of our journalism is to validate their experiences and help them navigate their lives.
But now is a time to keep an ever-closer eye on their thoughts and feelings, which is why I commissioned the first instalment of Stylist’s ‘Metamorphosis Years’ research. Here’s just a few of the things Stylist women told us:
- She’s in recovery from trauma and is healing. That means she is looking to brands to support her, solve something for her or drive overall change for the better.
- She’s more anxious about things like health, happiness, loneliness and work/life balance than she was pre-pandemic. She wants help to ease those anxieties.
- She’s way more attuned to inequality and social injustice. Compassionate brands who address issues or facilitate conversation will appeal to her even more.
- 1 in 5 Stylist women have changed their life’s priorities, wanting more experiences, fulfilment, and simplicity. Thumbs up to anyone giving little moments big love.
- Contentment is the No.1 thing for her to achieve in the next decade. She wants to be engaged in conversations around anti-stress, not anti-ageing. And she wants more joy!
- Her desire to be a conscious consumer has massively accelerated: she wants help shopping smarter and how to spend with care and thoughtfulness.
- She wants to feel more present and more connected than ever. Reconnection and personal development are two of her top priorities in the next few years.
Having this insight into the behaviours and needs of our audience allows us to hone in on what really matters to them when creating our content and events. This November, Stylist’s annual festival of inspiration, Stylist Live (Truman Brewery, Nov 11-13) will be purposefully built around those needs and is where 12,000 women will reconnect, learn, grow, find joy and shop smart – all the things we know they are currently craving under one roof.
And for me, meeting needs is what it’s all about. As Editors, PRs and Marketeers, showing that we understand our consumers’ needs has never been more necessary. It’s why we need to be even more collaborative in creating purposeful stories and events. Let’s serve the reader the best we can – because now is when she needs us most.
If you’re interested in pre-Christmas retail, branding, sampling or experiential opportunities at Stylist Live, Stylist MD Sophie Robinson would love to hear from you on Sophie.Robinson@stylist.co.uk