OK! Relaunches Website with Eyes on TMZ
Celebrity glossy wunderkind OK! magazine relaunched its Web site today with an Escalade’s worth of features—“web exclusive, continuously updated breaking news, celebrity updates, photo galleries, videos, reviews, blogs and numerous interactive features“—and an eye on the category’s most popular Web site, TMZ.
“OK! is in 13 countries, and will be in 19 by the end of the year,” says publisher Tom Morissy. “We think he U.S. will be a template for those other countries—a Reuters for Hollywood across the Globe.”
The site is touting its “state-of-the-art, made fresh daily video,” MyOK!, its social networking component, a “CelebCam”—where OK! “gives celebrity guests the chance to turn the cameras around as they talk to average people about what they care about most”—and something called “Man Candy,” based on a regular magazine feature. Morissy says OK! will announce celebrity bloggers in the coming weeks, including Paula Abdul, who has signed on to blog for the site in a lead-up to the next American Idol season.
“In the past several months, we have broken exclusives on Britney, the Eva & Tony wedding, Sheryl Crow’s baby and Larry Birkhead,” said Morissy in a statement announcing the deal. “With this site, we will provide our readers with even more up to the minute news they simply won’t find anywhere else.”
Or will they?
TMZ.com averages 10,251,000 million unique visitors a month, according to Nielsen/NetRatings. OK!? About 250,000 unique visitors, according to Morissy. (Popsugar, another player in the celeb-rutal digital space, averages 146,136 unique visitors a month, according to Quantcast.) TMZ, though, is okmagazine.com’s primary launch sponsor. An ad for TMZ appears as the top banner and in the right column— the only non-house advertisement on the relaunched OK! homepage.
So how does OK! purport to compete with TMZ, when TMZ is the site’s biggest advertiser? Morissy is quick to note, ad is for TMZ TV, TMZ’s forthcoming television show. Besides, Morissy says, “in this category, people who enjoy our site are often looking at a handful of sites.” And TMZ’s ad tripled OK!’s online revenue for the relaunch. “We didn’t have any before,” says Morissy.