17 March 2010

Hello! Magazine

Hello!, launched in 1988 and published weekly ever since, has since become well established as a purveyor of celebrity photo-features and other aspects of photo journalism. Each issue features a mixture of articles and interviews from around the world, the range covered aimed at a very specificdemographic. Readership, in 2004, had reached almost two million UK adults, predominantly women, but nowadays the rival magazine 'OK!' out-sells Hello! by roughly three to one. Hello! is, in short, a gossip magazine. But what do Hello! readers expect from their favourite weekly?

  • A Diary Of The Week offers photographic coverage of high society events, such as balls, cocktail parties, receptions, charity dinners or gallery openings. (The more cynical reader may feel 'balls' to be the most apt description of Hello! magazine's output.)
  • Panorama gives an image-based review of current world events, and is the furthest Hello! strays from its celebrity features.
  • Inside Story provides an insight into the daily lives of what Hello! describes as the 'rich and famous', and is usually followed up by Cinematters, which achieves the same purpose but with a more specific focus on the entertainment industry.
  • Fashion and Lifestyle provide Hello! readers with an insight into 'beautiful people and beautiful clothes', as well as ensuring readers can stay up to date with cookery, interiors, beauty tips and television and film listings. Some aspects are embellished in their own Cookery and Travelsections.

Readership Details

It's obvious from looking at the contents of an average Hello! magazine that the reader is far from likely to be attending the social events covered, or to be enjoying the fine interiors the 'rich and famous' encounter on an everyday basis. Indeed, Monica Horten of the British Interactive Media Association takes a gleeful jab at Hello! with her view that 'Hello! is the sort of magazine that is read by the same audience that watches soap operas on television, and by the rest of us strictly only at the hairdressers or in the dentist's waiting room'. Continuing with an assertion that 'the intellectual level is not high', Ms. Horten clearly has her finger on the pulse.

Hello! Magazine itself is more specific about its readership, of which 82% are women, though it's far more flattering, clearly believing its readers to be a high-class, discerning clientele as opposed to gossip-starved soap-addicts. Amongst other things, Hello! are pleased to note that:

  • Readers of Hello! are 71% more likely than the average female to choose a car mainly on looks.
  • Hello! readers are willing and able to spend money on fulfilling their desires. In the last 12 months its readers have apparently spent over sixty-four million pounds on microwave ovens.
  • 91% of Hello! readers enjoy an alcoholic drink.
  • Hello! readers spend nearly 93 million pounds on food every week.


The Hello! website offers one or two other titbits which, while not earth-shatteringly interesting, are worth a mention.

  • Hello! magazine is printed at Polestar Greaves in Scarborough, UK. (Gravure, if you're into technicalities.)
  • According to a recent survey, Hello! readers perceive themselves as upmarket, eschewing other magazines of a similar nature, such as OK! magazine.

The Curse Of Hello!

It is well known that Hello! pay good money for exclusive photocoverage of celebrity weddings. It has been noticed that a large proportion of such weddings break up extremely quickly, an effect known, jokingly, as 'the curse of Hello!'. Some kind of official study needs to be done...

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