An advertising industry publication reports that First Lady Michelle Obama’s “covergirl” photo on some leading magazines, does not always equal increased sales, and sometimes, sales are slow and even considerably below average. See photos and two videos below.

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Michelle Obama

Advertising Age reports that Michelle as the covergirl, “doesn’t always deliver.”

…Ms. Obama may not yet be general-interest magazines’ new Princess Diana, who regularly helped the industry sell more copies at newsstands.

Michelle appearing on a cover with the President, however, ‘ups’ sales considerably. As covergirl on a magazine with a predominantly Black audience, Ms. Obama sales generally do well.

In the Fall of 2008, Ebony had a winner with “The Real Michelle Obama” cover. Sales were reported to be 26% better than the magazine’s six-month average.

Essence Magazine considers the First Lady to be just as exciting to its readers as President Obama. They split the cover of their January 2009 issue and almost doubled the previous January sales.

Here’s the other side of the story: Ladies’ Home Journal put both Obamas on the cover and sales were 21% below the average for the second half of the year.

Michelle’s covers on People Magazine hasn’t seen the ‘pop’ that a ‘Lady Diana’ issue was sure to bring. Their March 9th cover with Ms. Obama sold 1.4 million copies, but first three issues of 2008 averaged 13 million sales.

Us Weekly reported similarly “average” sales with Michelle and her daughters, Malia and Sasha, on the cover.

Newsweek’s “The Meaning of Michelle” cover reports sales 15% below average for that time of the year. Another Newsweek publication, “Michelle Obama at 44,” with the First Lady gracing the cover, brought sales 23% below their usual second-half average.

The New Yorker and Vogue said sales for their March issues with Michelle O on the cover is too early to call. That means neither are flying off the shelves.

Oprah shared the cover of her “O” Magazine with Michelle O (a first for Oprah – she has had the cover of her magazine all to herself for nine years) for the April 2009 issue, but sources say although it is too early to be accurate, sales are expected to track 25% higher than the same period-average for 2008.

Michelle Obama has gained the title “Covergirl-in-Chief. Photographers are undoubtedly trying to tweak what makes a cover with Michelle Obama work or not work: sleeveless or not sleeveless, high heels, low heels or flats, hair extensions…or not? The goal: another ‘Diana.’

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Michelle Obama (Photos)

Michelle Obama Covergirl (Video)

Michelle Obama (Video)