Media Magazine

It is Summer 2011 and European Newspapers Take off for the Beach

Posted on the 27 June 2011 by Themarioblog @garciainteract
To be updated Monday

TAKEAWAY: With July approaching, and the Italian Riviera, like other beaches throughout Europe, filling up with VIPs as well as ordinary people, the one newspaper that covers the region, Il Secolo XIX, prepares special daily features as part of its summer edition.  Design Director Massimo Gentile shares the pages and the experience with us. PLUS: Tyler Brulé‘s summer newspaper, Mediterraneo, makes another appearance at a European beach near you.

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Here is the front page of Il Secolo XIX, notice promo at the top for the XTE Estate (summer) section

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Logo of the Xte Estate section

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Album: double page agenda of all entertainment events

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Front page of the summer edition section: notice the Gossip promo upper left of the page. Emphasis on events.

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And saying arrivederci to one of television’s most popular detectives ever: Colombo

It makes perfect sense to hear Il Secolo XIX’s Design Director, Massimo Gentile, explain it: 

Well, it is summer, the politicians are relaxing so there is no big political news, and there is no football to keep the fans entertained, and cultural events come to a sort of stop.  So we view the summer season as an opportunity to beef up our entertainment section, call it Summer, and to cover gossip, celebrities and all the famous people who arrive with their beach bags and designer’s sunglasses in the Italian Riviera

One question for Massimo: What does Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi do during the summer?  Does his frequent scandals and escapades with pretty young women stop?  Or is there a Berlusconi summer beach villa to provide titillating news and photos?

And, of course, news is never abandoned.  Out of 48 daily pages, the first 30 still include the usual news coverage.

Massimo reminds us that this summer could present interesting challenges for the Italian press, with a government that could “collapse”.  So, he tells me, “news from Rome continues to be important, and we keep an eye out for it, just in case…..but the people are ready for the beach and summer.“

Summer editions in Europe

The idea of the summer edition is NOT exclusive to Italy.  Indeed, my Swedish clients at the Goteborgs Posten, like most Swedish newspapers, produce special feature sections during the summer. In the case of Sweden, where boating and seaside cabins are the rave during the much awaited for summers, the GP emphasizes all that relates to those topics, with special emphasis on outdoor cooking, and plenty of recipes along with the wines that best go with them.

In the case of Il Secolo XIX, however, the emphasis is on entertainment and personalities. Plus, Massimo reminds me, the editors make a special effort on providing up to date agendas and schedules of special events. “At the end of the beach day, people do the town, the restaurants, the concerts, so we must provide a good daily listing of activities going on in the region, with emphasis on the coastal area., and that is what Album is there for.“

Il Secolo’s prime circulation region is Liguria, a splendidly beautiful coastal region of northwestern Italy, It is in this area that the upper middle class people of Milan keep a beach house, which means that during the summer the population increases—-as do the number of potential readers for the newspaper.  However, it is summer mode for these people, they don’t wish to have a lot of news, but prefer a robust feature section that emphasizes beach area happenings.  Il Secolo pleases with its summer edition!

Massimo emphasizes this point:

It is important for us to do an entertaining daily edition for these people. It is a lighter newspaper for sure. There is some news, of course, but the emphasis will be on trends in fashion, food, lifestyle, And, of course, parties, parties and more parties. Who was seen where? And with whom? People love to see all the famous VIPs who are their neighbors and what they are doing.  The social pages become protagonists this time of the year.

The Il Secolo summer feature section

The Il Secolo regular feature section is called Xte, so during the summer, the word Estate (summer) is added under the logo, which Massimo has designed to change colors from day to day to, like he tells me, “ to avoid monotony”.

We show you a variety of pages here of the Il Secolo’s summer editions.

Tyler Brulé‘s Mediterraneo: ready for the beaches again this summer

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And if you visit a Mediterranean beach this summer, chances are you will find a copy of Mediterraneo to enjoy while sipping your Campari and orange juice under that big beach umbrella.  Tyler promises that his Monocle brand of good features, lists of the best of the best and entertaining beach time readings are making a comeback this summer, after the successful run last year.

Of course, we are back,“ Tyler tells me. “It is a money maker”.

As in, who says that one cannot make money with print?

Here is how Tyler describes what’s coming with the 2011 edition of Mediterraneo, scheduled for July publication:

Same format with audio music series for lounge chair enjoyment. Bigger distribution - up 50%. We’ve gone for longer reads, bigger reportage - really using all the page real estate we have.

Up next for Tyler and the Monocle brand?

Our radio station. We started building our studios last week. Launches October.“

Of interest about Monocle’s Mediterraneo:

Flip through the pages of last year’s Mediterraneo:

Links of interest today:

- USA: NY Times Paywall May Be Working, Could Work Better

- USA: News and Opinion Get Cozy in NY Times’s New Sunday Section

- Marie Claire’s Anti-Apple Maneuver – Women’s magazine moves to get around App Store

Today’s pop up moment

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Today’s Bild pop up deals with the very hush hush New York City marriage of that James Bond 007 agent, Daniel Craig and actress Rachel Weisz

TheMarioBlog post #794

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