Is it possible to influence The Week?

Weekly current affairs title The Week recently celebrated its 20th consecutive ABC rise - an unprecedented feat for the unassuming news digest that launched in 1995.

Published by Dennis Publishing, The Week is now the biggest-selling weekly subscription magazine in the UK, with a circulation of 150,099 following a year-on-year rise of 4.5 per cent.

The Week distils the best of the British and foreign press into 35 succinct editorial pages. Nearly half the title is dedicated to news and comment, while the rest is divided among leisure, the arts, property and the City.

So at whom is it actually targeted? Editor-in-chief Jeremy O'Grady explains: 'Busy, intelligent people in their thirties and upwards who find it difficult to keep up with the news and feel guilty that they do not know what's going on.'

O'Grady attributes The Week's success to the need for a guide to the increasingly nebulous news scene. 'We see ourselves as a source that readers can trust,' says O'Grady.

Another USP is that The Week provides a single source for the many differing viewpoints from the comment pages in the national press. You can find out what Jonathan Steele in The Guardian thinks of the changing relationship between Russia and the West and compare it with Chris Patten's view in The Moscow Times (they don't agree).

'People enjoy conjuring with two or three opinions at the same time, providing they are sensible,' says O'Grady.

As a digest of the news already published, the options for PR people dealing directly with the magazine are limited. O'Grady says they rarely receive calls from PROs and it is true that PR professionals do not see it as a key news outlet.

However, More2 senior account executive Rosanna Head was contacted by the magazine to get an image of her client Great Little Trading Co.'s juice carton holder. It had been in the press around the back-to-school coverage.

AMC Network MD Xavier Adam confirms the magazine is generally only interested in big brands or quirky products. And while he agrees that 98 per cent of the title is second-hand material, he still advises that its worth keeping in touch with editorial if there is a story coming up that could be of interest.

'I'd definitely contact it and let it know what's going on, but you have to follow its coverage. And do not let junior PROs call The Week - this is a high-level magazine.'

Adam adds the title is keeping with the times and has started a best of blogs section. 'The team is always open to new sources, so if you can show it useful things to keep an eye on, that would be a good way of building a relationship.'

QUICK FACTS
Publisher: Dennis Publishing
Circulation: 150,099
Frequency: Weekly
Contacts: Editor-in-chief: Jeremy O'Grady, editorialadmin@theweek.co.uk

A minute with ... Jeremy O'Grady, editor-in-chief, The Week

- Who reads The Week?

People who want things quickly - time-sensitive people. The pressure of time is an important element.

- How do people read it?

Despite being a magazine for people with not much time to spare, people often set aside time to read it. There are others who snack on it and some who like to read it in the bath or on a certain night of the week.

- Is your team open to PR pitches?

On the whole, not many PR professionals contact us. The magazine carries no original news and we are an organ of second report, so it would have to appear in something else first for us to cover it.

- So aren't there any sections that carry first-hand information?

On the Briefing pages we do look at more of the issues below the surface. This week we are doing something on this fantastic new superconductor. We will look at that and give the readers more background than they would get from the usual news story.

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