Playboy Puts On Clothes

The historic 62-year-old Playboy magazine  announced that the thing which helped push the brand into stardom will no longer be a part of their online content strategy: nudity. The announcement comes as a redesign for the company which includes a more digital focus, and a realization that young men no longer look to outlets like Playboy for provocative imagery–it’s available for free on cellphones.

What this means is as Scott Flanders–Playboy Enterprises CEO–says, “It’s not provocative to see nudity. In fact, it can actually limit our audience.”

The redesign comes as part of an effort to make Playboy more modern, including SFW (safe for work) content: sex column, investigative journalism, and art for young professional men who’ve grown up with access to nudity online.

Last year, Playboy relaunched its online edition without nudity, and they report that lead to a 250% increase in traffic.

This, among other factors, is what lead them to the conclusion it’s time to focus on the articles, which is really what it’s always been about. The nudity is what parlayed the magazine into a media giant, but the writing is what continues to keep an audience around.

 

As for the magazine?

Playboy Mags
It obviously isn’t going anywhere, but it will see changes just like the online presence has.

Playboy magazine will still feature a “Playmate of the Month” but they will instead be in PG-13 poses.

The magazine is what they call an ambassador for the Playboy brand. It starts a narrative that leads to what really makes the company money.

Merchandise. Playboy did over $1 billion in retail sales last year. How?

The iconic bowtie bunny is globally recognized so it can be sold on everything from perfumes to home décor to clothing to anything imaginable.

 

Hugh Hefner launched Playboy in 1953 and saw it’s highest circulation in 1972 at 7 million. Today, the circulation is just under 1 million, but this rebrand could be what saves Playboy.

CNN

Cory Jones is the executive put in charge of all digital outlets, as well as the magazine, this summer, while Hugh Hefner is still listed as editor-in-chief today. When Jones went went to the 89-year-old Hefner in a wood-paneled dining room full of Picasso’s with this radical idea, Hefner immediately agreed.

It seems the age-old excuse, “I read it just for the articles” will finally ring true…at least online that is.

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