Elliman axes Elevate mag after 18 months

Company says it will consolidate publishing efforts under Elliman name

May.May 19, 2016 08:00 AM

Douglas Elliman is stopping the presses for good on “Elevate,” the magazine it launched to great fanfare at Art Basel in December 2014, and instituting changes at its remaining glossy, “Elliman.”

An Elliman spokesperson said that “Elliman” magazine would be produced more regularly and will be published bi-monthly through the end of the year. A publishing schedule for 2017 has yet to be determined.

The magazines — both lifestyle-heavy quarterlies with competing editorial missions — have been a key component of an aggressive marketing strategy employed by the city’s largest residential brokerage as it’s expanded into new markets, including Los Angeles and Aspen. That effort has been largely overseen by Nicole Oge, the company’s global chief marketing officer.

Elliman CEO Dottie Herman said the move to consolidate its editorial efforts under one name would mean “better continuity in the marketplace” and the new publishing schedule would allow “Elliman” magazine to be a more manageable size and weight.

“The magazine has been a great value add to the brand and has been well received throughout the company. We will continue to revise to meet demand,” she said.

The latest issue of “Elliman,” published May 5 and featuring pieces on the late architect Zaha Hadid and chef Geoffrey Zakarian, isn’t as flashy as earlier editions. The magazine’s heft has been reduced and gone is the glossy finish of its pages.

Oge, who joined in 2014, brought freelance writers such as Vanity Fair’s George Wayne and New York Fashion Week founder Fern Mallis on board to write for the magazines.

Elliman’s parent company, the Vector Group, saw it’s EBITA (earnings before interest, taxes and amortization) decline marginally in the fourth quarter of last year, despite a rise in revenues. That was due in part to the massive marketing push made by the company last year, Vector CEO Howard Lorber told investors on a recent earnings call.

“Our marketing budget has gone up substantially and that was also done to support our new development group and also our new markets we have opened in L.A. and Aspen,” he said. “We invested for future substantial growth.”

Lorber previously told The Real Deal that the company is pouring “tens of millions” into marketing associated with its expansion.

Competitors have followed Elliman’s lead and entered the publishing realm, but at lesser expense. Compass’ quarterly magazine is light in comparison with Elliman’s glossy tomes and rival the Corcoran Group opted for an online-only lifestyle blog called Inhabit in lieu of a print magazine.

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