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Heat Magazine Case Study

Rob Miller | Monday January 21, 2013

Categories: GCSE, Eduqas (WJEC) GCSE, WJEC GCSE Media Studies, Key Concepts, Audience, Genre, Ideology, Institutions, Media Language, Narrative, Representation & Stereotyping, Hot Entries, Magazines, Gossip Magazines, Intro to Magazines, New Media, Convergence, Digital Media, Synergy

Institutional Factors and Marketing

Heat is a weekly gossip magazine published by Bauer, one of the oligopoly of magazine publishers with a circulation of just over half a million.

When it launched in 1999 it launched as a Listings/Entertainment magazine achieving a lower than expected circulation of below 100,000 – as a result the decision was made to re-brand and reposition Heat in the marketplace as an out and out Gossip Magazine aimed at C2, D and E women.

The re-brand was deliberately timed to coincide with the first series of C4 and Endemol’s Big Brother, a massively commercially successful decade long Reality TV Show that spawned many similar concept shows throughout the naughties still broadcast today. Big Brother’s hype and talkability was embedded on Heat Magazine covers and inside pages and evidenced a form of synergy for both media texts who fed on each other’s success.

Much like the genre of Women’s Magazines, Heat launched into a saturated market but EMAP (the previous publishers before being acquired by Bauer) were fully aware of the hordes of mainstream, mass audiences who craved this type of celebrity gossip and scandal about the personal lives of celebrities. Competition includes Closer, Reveal, Star, Take a Break, Now, OK and Hello (higher profile celebrities) to name only a few but Heat still maintains a strong position in the market, despite the declining circulation of print media – Heat, along with most magazines has a significant online presence on its website www.heatworld.com. Synergy with the rapidly expanding Reality TV genre was such that it achieved record sales when Jade Goody appeared in Big Brother 3 in 2002 and again later in 2006 when Big Brother housemates spoke about their spilt ‘exclusively’ to Heat Magazine.

Heat Magazine thrives on audience recognition of lower profile celebrities like Peter Andre who unashamedly use these media outlets to keep their career alive. Higher...

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