It's been a good year for fashion magazines, at least in terms of advertising pages.
InStyle, Vogue and Elle have each seen significant increases in pages over the last six months. The Time Inc. title has thus far accrued 1,103.21 ad pages, a 10% increase from the same period in 2009, while Conde Nast's stalwart saw pages jump during the same time by 8% to 987.05. Elle enjoyed a 5% increase to 939.
This is a big win for InStyle...kind of. While more ad pages might gauge the health of a magazine, it doesn't necessarily mean it's making more money. Vogue will argue that, unlike its competitors, it doesn't discount ads (although it does sell them in a bundle with Teen Vogue and sometimes Lucky or Glamour, so that advertisers feel like they're getting more for their money.)
Another interesting point: InStyle's ads are arguably more mass market than Vogue's. Elle is somewhere in the middle. But does that really matter? Big corporations like Johnson & Johnson presumably have more money to spend on advertising than luxury brands, even those owned by conglomerates like LVMH.
All in all, it's hard to really measure who comes out on top in this instance. However, we know it's not W, which saw a 14% decrease in pages to 423. Good luck with that, Mr. Tonchi.