Lexus is sole sponsor and advertiser of a new effort with Time Inc., and American Express Publishing (AEP) that constitutes what the companies say is the first-ever consumer-customized magazine.
The magazine, called Mine--with the tagline "My magazine, My way"--comprises content from Time Inc. and AEP brands consolidated in a free, personal, customized magazine.
Starting this week, consumers can go to Timeinc.com/mine and choose content from five of eight select titles: Time, Sports Illustrated, Food & Wine, Real Simple, Money, InStyle, Golf, and Travel + Leisure. They can get the magazine either as a limited-edition print format or online, and also receive news, information, and entertainment alerts through a customized widget or mobile application via RSS feeds.
About 231,000 print and online copies of each issue will be available, and readers who sign up will receive a new issue of Mine every two weeks for 10 weeks.
Paul Silverman, executive media director at Team One, says Lexus is co-promoting the customized magazines with Time, Inc. "What you will see in each of the eight respective magazines in book and online are ads breaking this week encouraging you to log on to the site."
He says Team One developed the idea as a way to articulate the RX brand. "The inspiration started first with the product," he says. "The RX is all about driver-inspired, so in the media space, it was 'how do you we bring this driver-inspired concept to life?' And we got the idea of how people consume content online. It was hatched at the agency, inspired by the client's product and pitched to Time, Inc."
Lexus gets four single-page ads touting the 2010 RX in the 36-page Mine. Silverman says the deal with Time is wrapped into a broader media buy to tout the RX in Time, Inc. books. He says Lexus will base its next move--whether to continue the program or do it again in some other iteration--on how well the magazine sells, and the number of subscribers who show real interest in Lexus vehicles. Once a consumer subscribes, he or she is taken to an RX page with a dealer locater--"so we will have hard leads," he says.
The RX page also has video pods featuring people speaking about things important to their lives that relate to their Lexus RX--which, says Silverman, aligns the driver-inspired RX mantra with the reader-inspired theme of the promotion.
"It's interesting when you view the videos because they aren't hard sells in terms of product, but you get the message, they are very emotional and link well with the individual editorial of those titles," he says.
AEP and Time Inc., along with CNN, are doing a separate--albeit similar--program with luxury auto competitor Infiniti. The program centers on a customer-personalized, Travel + Leisure "Weekend Getaways" series sponsored exclusively by Infiniti. Created by the editors of Travel + Leisure, "Weekend Getaways" features short vacation destinations near major cities in the U.S. The "Weekend Getaways" publication will be in print, online, on mobile and TV.
The print version is a three-part booklet series inserted in the April, July, and October issues of Travel + Leisure and other AEP and Time Inc. titles. Infiniti will be the only advertiser within the booklets.
The broadcast version will air weekly through Sept. 9 on CNN, HLN and CNN Airport Network starting this week, with Infiniti sponsoring. Like the print version, the TV show will highlight inns, restaurants, art, entertainment and shopping in the U.S.
Infiniti is also exclusive sponsor of a CNN.com-hosted "Weekend Getaways" sweepstakes that gives consumers a chance to win one of three trips to their choice of nine featured "Weekend Getaways" destinations.
The "Weekend Getaways" sweepstakes will give away $35,000 worth of trips designed by Travel + Leisure editors, and promoted on-air, in print and digital media advertising across CNN, Time Inc. and AEP brands. Infiniti will get 30-second sweepstakes spots, print ads, and banner ads on CNN.com and travelandleisure.com.