In the midst of a huge downturn in print advertising, the Big Media bet by Condé Nast, the 115-year-old magazine publisher, is starting to bear fruit.
Condé Nast Entertainment, run by Dawn Ostroff, finished 2016 with at least a $1 million profit, an Oscar nomination and more traffic to its digital content than ESPN or BuzzFeed.
“Our division became profitable [relatively quickly],” Ostroff told The Post. “We had the pressure of scaling and monetizing at the same time — we didn’t have the luxury of some startups to scale and then monetize.”
North American magazine spending will fall 3 percent in 2017, to $22.35 billion, from 2016, after falling 2 percent from 2015, according to industry tracker GroupM.
Enter Ostroff, who is tasked with steering the glam mag name toward film and digital content — the sweet spot for media, where non-search ad spending is expected to expand by 20 percent, to $21.7 billion, from 2015.
She was wooed to Condé in 2011 with the long-shot mission of taking magazine stories and turning them into digital and box office dough.
She had few believers in those days, but as the division started to show increased traffic and ad revenue, many top magazine editors got on board and sought her support. Ostroff helped launch 19 digital video channels, most of which were based on mag concepts.
Content from the firm’s magazines — and CNE original content — have since generated 1.2 billion views on YouTube. It also is distributed on such big names as Facebook, Snapchat and Yahoo.
“Go out to where the consumer is, as opposed to expecting the consumer to come to you,” Ostroff cites, as if it’s her mantra.