Monday, May 2, 2011

What does Liliane Bettencourt read?

I wondered.

I was reading Forbes online when I saw a brief article about her. According to Forbes she is the daughter of L'Oreal founder Eugene Schueller (...) Liliane is the world's richest woman, thanks to her controlling stake in the cosmetics giant. She has held the stock for more than four decades.

I wondered which magazines does a Millionaire or Billionaire woman read?

So I tried to guess, about a month and half ago ago when I started this experiment, I went to the bookstore and selected a couple of magazines including Investor's Guide 2011, Travel Issue Forbes Life, Automobile, Money, Town & Country. 

What I loved about each:

In Money:
I highlighted in Stocks section the Peer-group abbreviations. I want to understand stocks because I own them in my 401K but I want to understand the market better. I know that I am invested very aggressively which makes sense because I don't plan on retiring anytime soon. I love working on projects and earning money.

In Town & Country:
I didn't highlight this time but I gloated, this magazine's binding is thin compared to a Harper's Bazaar or a Vogue. This magazine has sheer elegance. Most of the ads of perfumes, classic or modern homes, jewerly, just targeting a royal lifestyle. For just a few dollars you can read about the elite.

In Automobile:
The cars were awesome there was this great article about Ferrari and the Fiat 500, both cars were bright red and I said to myself I wonder what the insurance rates would be for those. Funny in this magazine there were no ads for car insurance. I would have thought there would be some.

I bought one issue of Better Homes and Gardens and read through my subscription to Real Simple.

It's clear all these magazines target specific audiences and income.

The ironic part in all the magazines that I read, Better Homes and Gardens had the most pharmaceutical ads (Celebrex-arthritis, Reclast-osteoporosis,Vimovo, Boniva-bone loss,Cymbalta-chronic back pain, prolia-post menopausal), Real Simple had 6 (Boniva, Reclast, Lapband, Prevnar, Humira, Flovent). Automobile none, Harper's none, Money none, Forbes none and Town & Country zero, none.

What does the presence of those ads tell us about the the audiences. Should I assume that the wealthier you are the healthier you are? or the healthier you are the wealthier you are?

What I notice is in Town & Country there no tips about eating healthy, no tips about how to energize your life or how to never buy the wrong clothes. When you read T&C the assumptions are that you already know how to be healthy, how to energize your life and you already have control over your life and finances. And clearly in contrast to other publications, there are no acticles in T&C about time management but all photos and articles are enjoying life.

The elites and the wealthy enjoy life (I am sure there are some exceptions but mostly it would safe to say that there is this peace of mind and clear balance - is balance and in peace your heart easier when you are wealth ?perhaps that peace of mind is what makes many others envious of them)

While magazines will tell us from to time to time the how-to-, there are magazines who actually remind us to just live well and be happy.  Someone ask me once why would I ever want to read T&C compared a Cosmo or Marie Claire and that maybe I was turning into a snob or a bourgeoise - I said in T&C, everyone is actually looking happy, looking they're having a great time. Why wouldn't I be in that picture?

When I read a magazine sure I always to learn something new, perhaps a recipe or a new stretch but ultimately I want to be reminded of the constant opportunity to live at peace, wealthy and happy and all those are compatible and essential for success.

Maybe Liliane and I are not reading the same articles but I believe in being happy, healthy, wealthy and having beauty as Liliane would...because I know I am worth it! 

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