Editors of the world: If you're looking for a secret, magical solution to selling more magazines, you're going to either need a dead person, a little bit of nudity, or Beyoncé on the cover. If you don't, and choose to put someone like Nicki Minaj up front instead, you're potentially facing the worst sales of the year. According to WWD, magazines like Vanity Fair — which never hesitates to put dead celebrities on its cover (Audrey Hepburn, Princess Diana, Marilyn Monroe) — have seen print sales skyrocket, while publications that tend to feature the new-and-now celebrities see marked declines. It's a move that Town & Country's editor-in-chief Jay Fielden believes we all can appreciate.
“We love dead people,” Fielden told WWD. “It’s part of all of our lives, so why should magazines be lassoed to some sort of rule that doesn’t apply to other parts of our lives? What genre of books is most popular? Biographies. And those are often about dead people." He does have a point. We gravitate towards images and stories that we're familiar with — or a celebrity whose legacy still carries some air of mystery. And as for Beyoncé's cover success (her March Vogue cover outsold Michelle Obama's exclusive interview by 60,000 copies), well, let's just say the power of Queen B compels us. (WWD)