Hearst has promoted Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles to chief content officer, a newly created position in which she'll work closely with Hearst Magazines' editors — in the U.S. and abroad — to develop new initiatives and brand extensions across digital, television, live events, and advertising and branded content products.
Coles first joined Hearst in 2006 as editor-in-chief of Marie Claire before shifting to Cosmopolitan in 2012. Since then, Coles has added to her responsibilities the role of editorial director for Seventeen.
Since taking the reins at Cosmo, Coles has attempted to spearhead the sex, relationships, and beauty guide's transition from a print magazine to a 21st-century multimedia brand, one that reached a total audience of 33.6 million people across print, digital, and social media in July, according to the MPA's Magazine Media 360° Brand Audience Report.
"Joanna has terrific editorial and business acument and has emerged as a strong leader during her 10 years at Hearst, both within the organization and the media community," said Hearst president and CEO, Steven R. Swartz, in a statement. "She is an innovator who operates at every level and an ideal addition to our leadership team."
Although different in title, Coles' new position appears to be similar to the one formerly held by Hearst Magazines editorial director Ellen Levine, who stepped down last week to take on a less-hands-on role as "editorial consultant." Coles will continue to report to Hearst Magazines president David Carey, and her new job takes effect immediately.
The move mirrors a recent internal shift made by rival publisher Time Inc., who announced its own new chief content officer, former Fortune editor Alan Murray, as the company bids to better unify its domestic and international operations.
"Joanna is a powerhouse modern editor — she has strengthened the thought-leadership of Cosmopolitan and established deep relationships with major players in advertising, technology, entertainment, and government," said Carey in a statement. "Her boundless energy will be an integral part of all we do, as we forge an even closer connection between our U.S. and international media businesses."
To replace Coles as editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan and editorial director of Seventeen, Hearst has brought in Yahoo! Health editor-in-chief Michele Promaulayko, who seved as Cosmo's executive editor from 2000 to 2008 before jumping to Rodale's Women's Health.