In 2009, AFAR Media was launched with a focus on travel and a combined $20 million investment from Joe Diaz, Greg Sullivan and Ernie Garcia. This summer, at the five-year anniversary mark and with the August/September issue having just hit newsstands, AFAR has arrived at profitability.
Branded content currently accounts for a third of AFAR’s revenues. In the latest print issue, starting on page 19, there is for example “Artisans Inspired.” Part of a year-long partnership with The Ritz-Carlton, the three-page feature is anchored around quotes from surfer Loni Klein, New York Botanical Gardens curator Karen Daubmann and international travel excursions leader Sean Nelson.
“This is a multi-dimensional, multi-platform branded content program that lives in print, mobile and on desktop,” says Diaz during a recent telephone conversation with FishbowlNY. “How we try to approach branded content is – it’s really all about what is the core idea. What are the hooks, what are the elements that are going to get people excited.”
“We don’t care if it’s paid [content] or if it’s editorial,” he adds. “Our philosophy is that the content always has to be good. And we’re not shy about making sure everybody knows that this is paid for. The whole idea of the campaign is that artisans inspire and let’s help bring those rich values and characters to life, through the eyes of the people on the ground.”
Brain, Child: The Magazine for Thinking Mothers launched in 2000 and has been lauded for its award-winning content. When editor-in-chief Marcelle Soviero took the helm in 2012, she said one of her goals was to keep the “major tenants of the magazine” in place. That is, she would continue to publish short stories, essays and features that offered a “cerebral experience” for its readers.
There have also been some recent changes that are providing new opportunities for freelancers, such as a forthcoming poetry section, for which Soviero is eager to find freelancers and established poets. In addition, a broader reviews section means writers should send pitches on books with a motherly, literary angle. Just make sure you have an understanding of the magazine. Soviero said:
Brain, Child doesn’t publish the typical how-tos and product reviews found in many service-oriented parenting magazines and websites. Pitches should have a literary quality. Perspectives should be parent-focused rather than child-centric.
For more on what the editors want, read: How to Pitch: Brain Child: The Magazine for Thinking Mothers.
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During the last weekend of June, the New York Times Magazine asked: “What’s the Matter With Eastern Kentucky?” Today, via an op-ed in The Floyd County Times, Jonathan Gay answers with the equivalent of: “Less than you think.”
Gay is the director of the Kentucky Innovation Network office in Morehead, where he works with local entrepreneurs. He
argues that the piece by Annie Lowrey was a classic case of big-city myopia and explains how he, pro-actively, is moving forward:
Rather than wait on the New York Times to tell that [hopeful] story, we’ve decided to start telling it ourselves. Through words, photos, tweets, social media and video, we will soon be launching a Web effort to tell the tales of entrepreneurs living in eastern Kentucky. We’ll begin with one each from the six eastern Kentucky counties the Times reported as being in the bottom 10.
Blake Lively is famous for saying words that other people write, but thanks to her new lifestyle site Preserve, perhaps one day we’ll think of her as an editor more than anything else.
Preserve, explained Lively in her inaugural editor’s note, is “part magazine, part e-commerce hub, part philanthropic endeavor and above all, a place to showcase the power of imagination, ingenuity, quality, and above all, people.” Also, above all, a site to write “above all” as much as you please.
“Here at Preserve there are people, stories, essays, videos and goods which hopefully inspire your home, your style and your tongue,” added the 26-year-old actress. “There’s expensive stuff. Inexpensive stuff. And everything in between. But their value, is up to you. We may romanticize it, calling it treasure. What we’re really saying is, we see worth on every level.” Apparently, there are no rules, when it comes to comma, usage, at Preserve.
[Image: JStone / Shutterstock.com]
Be sure to tune in tomorrow at 1 p.m. ET for our latest Career Lunch Google+ Hangout! Mediabistro managing editor Valerie Berrios and MediaJobsDaily editor and career expert Vicki Salemi will be chatting with Kim Taylor, a veteran freelance copywriter and MediabistroEDU instructor.
Taylor has worked for a variety of agencies and brands, including David Levy, Brand Jam and American Express Platinum Travel. She’ll share her best advice for freelancers, on everything from managing your time wisely to scoring new clients and more.
— Marc Ecko (@marcecko) July 22, 2014
For some reason, Marc Ecko — the founder of Complex — attempted to bash GQ on Twitter. We say attempted, because despite his declaration that Complex was “new” and GQ was “old,” he not only used the wrong Twitter handle for GQ, he got his own magazine’s handle wrong too.
Sigh. Better luck next time, Marc.
As the imminent, identified sperm-donor father of a daughter (she is currently overdue), he sought a better understanding of what the future holds for his progeny by meeting with Flannery, fathered by a donor who currently lives in Atlanta and raised in the East Village in the 1980s by two mothers. Flannery’s dad, a gay man, has never come out to his family. Although he spent a lot of time with Flannery during her formative years, she, in turn, has never met any relatives on his side. From Dodge’s blog item:
I considered this for a moment: What must it be like to know you have these relations in the world — a grandmother, aunts, uncles, cousins — who don’t know you exist?
“Until recently, I was very saddened by it,” Flannery explained. “It would be really cool to get to know them.” But ultimately, she let it go, partly out of fear for how her father’s family might react to her nontraditional upbringing. “What if I met my grandmother after all these years, and she was like, ‘You’re from the serpent?’ That would be devastating.”
Alan Murray has been named the new editor of Fortune. He will be just the 17th editor of the glossy, which was founded in 1930 by the legendary Henry Luce. Murray most recently served as president of the Pew Research Center. He had been with Pew since 2012.
Prior to joining Pew, Murray worked at the Wall Street Journal in a variety of roles, most recently deputy managing editor and online executive editor. During Murray’s 10-year stint as the Journal’s Washington bureau chief, the bureau won three Pulitzers.
“Alan’s diverse background uniquely positions him to lead Fortune,” said Time Inc.’s executive VP, Todd Larsen, in a statement. “He is a digital champion and media visionary who can bridge every aspect of our business, moving effortlessly from the newsroom to the boardroom to television to conference stage.”
Murray will succeed Andy Serwer, who is leaving Time Inc. after 30 years.
Update (12:00 pm):
Below is Murray’s note to Pew staffers, announcing his decision to leave.
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