Full House and Garden

While Domino goes artsy, Conde Nast is pumping life into the shopper’s forbear, House and Garden. From January to June, H&G’s ad pages were down 0.6 percent compared to the same period in 2004, according to the Magazine Publishers of America. But last month, in a bid to ramp up advertising, H&G’s advertising department concluded a series of focus groups with H&G subscribers in metropolitan areas across the country. According to H&G publisher Joseph Lagani, his magazine gathered 150 women in New York, Atlanta, Chicago, and San Francisco and surveyed their home decorating views in focus groups commissioned by Conde Nast. “I can’t say it was only because there’s more competition that we have to do more research now,” he said. “I just think my basic approach, being a publisher, is that I want our sellers to be able to talk about our audience as no one else can.”

Despite whispers that have fluttered through 4 Times Square that Domino might crowd out its home decor cousin, Mr. Lagani said Conde Nast’s home decorating books are joining forces, not throwing elbows. Mr. Lagani said Conde Nast has formed an alliance called the Powerhouse Group with Domino publisher Beth Brenner and Architectural Digest publisher Amy Churgin to lure advertisers into all three titles in a concerted effort, coordinating sales and strategizing on accounts.”We have three magazines, who each has a clear position in the market,” Mr. Lagani said. “When you put that together, we have the opportunity to dominate the upscale home market like nobody else can do.”

–Gabriel Sherman