Rogers‘ Chatelaine magazine is aiming to make a splash with its own organic fair-trade coffee, which lands at Longo’s supermarkets across the Greater Toronto Area this week.
The foray into consumer packaged goods is just one step in the 85-year-old publication’s attempted evolution from a pure print product into a bigger lifestyle brand — an expansion that has picked up momentum under the reign of Rogers Media president Keith Pelley.
“You’re selling it as more than just as a print magazine. You want to move it towards selling it as a contented, branded company,” Pelley recently told The Financial Post. Earlier this year, Chatelaine launched its own line of notebooks (featuring its vintage covers) at Indigo stores, and has previously collaborated with Roots on the design of a leather bag.
The idea for a branded coffee originated within the Chatelaine kitchen, said publisher Tara Tucker. “Chatelaine believes in making the everyday extraordinary, and finding the simple pleasures in a moment or an item,” Tucker said, echoing the magazine’s tagline, “and what better way to do that than with coffee?”
Chatelaine Coffee is not positioned as a rival to brands like Starbucks and Nabob, said Tucker, but rather as a feel-good buy that will suit the readers’ interest in supporting other women. A portion of the proceeds from each purchase will go toward the Café Femenino Foundation, a non-profit that provides aid to coffee-growing women and their families.
Before going to market, the brew was taste-tested by editors, industry experts and readers in a lengthy process, Tucker said. And Chatelaine was able to tap The Shopping Channel (a sister company within Rogers Media) for insights into merchandising.
The coffee will be promoted through print and digital advertising in Chatelaine and across other Rogers Media publications, as well as through sampling at special events (such as a recent magazine-sponsored Roots shopping night). The coffee will also get editorial coverage “when it naturally fits,” Tucker said, noting that it does appear in Chatelaine’s December issue.
At Longo’s, the product will be sold in limited-edition packaging (bundled with a French press, or a mug), but the beans will soon be available nationally on an ongoing basis through Chatelaine.com.
More Chatelaine-branded merchandise is set to launch in association with The Shopping Channel in the near future.
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