In Style Gets Its Bag Together

Forget all the actors and actresses who picked up statuettes at last night’s Golden Globe awards. The real winners just may have been In Style magazine and its event gift bags.

The bags come in two categories. A presenter bag tops $12,000 in value and includes everything from a Mikimoto pearl necklace to a $5,000 spa vacation. An attendee bag is valued at $700, and will get you a tube of Crest toothpaste right on up to Givenchy cologne. In Style, the Time Warner celebrity lifestyle monthly, has parleyed a relationship with event producer The Hollywood Foreign Press Association into a role as gift bag coordinator. In so doing they have given advertisers a potential point of entry as a gift bag sponsor. And that has become a coveted spot over the years.

“Interest has definitely picked up over the years,” said In Style director of creative development Cyd Wilson. “As people have become more and more attracted to celebrities brands want to be associated with celebrities. In addition to the obvious press value, even the celebrity gives the gift to someone else, at least it will be passed on within the circle that product wants to be in.”



So if Nick Cage takes Camelback Mountain up on its comp spa package, and other guests go home with the news that they saw a movie star at Camelback, that’s good marketing. And to offer such an opportunity to its advertisers is good business for In Style.

According to Wilson, In Style has had a relationship with the Golden Globe board of directors, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, for all of its nine years. In Style could have put a lot more products into the bags this year, but Press Association actually calls the shots for the overall value of the bag and its contents. So In Style can certainly help an advertiser get access, but in the end the Press Association picks the products, not In Style. In Style does have a competitive advantage though, in being the coordinator.

“We do offer it as a service to our advertisers,” Wilson said. “And if the Press Association requests something ion the bags that we can’t get from our roster of advertisers, we’ll go to the proper channels to find it. We spend thousands of man hours per year on this project.”

Outside of the Globes, In Style coordinates bags only for charity events. For example, it sponsors Elton John’s Oscar night party, which benefits AIDS research.

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