New York Magazine E-Newsletter To Aggregate Weekly Deals

New York magazine is about to launch a weekly “deals” e-newsletter and online adjunct, but instead of matching offers play to advertisers, it will aggregate “the best of the best” of other e-commerce sites’ picks.

New York Deals, as the e-newsletter and related site is called, reflects the fact that e-commerce is now becoming as common to magazines and newspapers as advertising.

In just the past few weeks, publishers such as Gannett (NYSE: GCI), which recently announced the planned rollout of a local deals marketplace across its properties, and the New York Times recently released its own TimesLimited service.

While those sort of in-house e-commerce programs have been popular, companies like Hearst and McClatchy (NYSE: MNI) have partnered with third party deals services. In making its big foray into the social deals space, New York magazine is trying to find a third way. While its NY Deals will operate under its own banner, it will be selecting deals from a number of partners. The program’s launch partners are Gilt City, zozi, BuyWithMe, and Lifebooker.

More deals partners will be added over time following the May 11 launch, said Serena Torrey, New York Media’s executive director of digital business development, in an interview with paidContent. But it will keep the service fairly

In looking for a way to approach the deals space, New York decided that there are already myriad e-commerce pitches that have been finding their way into users in-boxes from publishers. “It’s incredibly difficult for busy people to know which email is worth opening and which deal is worth buying, particularly when the businesses featured are unfamiliar. New York Deals aims to solve this problem for users: by subscribing to the New York Deals newsletter, New Yorkers will be receiving a short, weekly list of the deals that are most worthy of their attention, and possibly a slice of their paycheck.”

Secondly, by choosing deals gathered by outside entities, New York magazine gets to avoid the “Chinese wall” problem between the editorial and marketing/advertising sides. “The core competency of this magazine is helping readers sift through movies, restaurant choices and shops, so this is an extension of that editorial perspective without compromising it by aligning it directly to advertising,” Torrey said.

Although advertising has come back after a very difficult recession, the necessity of finding other streams of revenue has ignited publishers’ frenzy for daily deals — or in New York magazine’s case, weekly — e-commerce dollars are still fairly small. New York is initially engaged in an experiment, and as such, the number deals will be small, with about two to four deals a week. If it proves to be popular, New York will then ramp up with more partner and more picks.