Condé Nast are to launch Them, a LGBTQ-focused publication, “its first independent brand since Portfolio magazine debuted in 2007,” says Business of Fashion. The multi-platform publication will launch at the end of October and is created by 26-year-old Phillip Picardi of Teen Vogue and Allure.
Phillip’s history at Teen Vogue is beyond impressive, increasing traffic from 1.4 million to over nine million monthly in his first two years, deservedly gaining him respect within the publishing company. “If I’ve learned anything from my time at Teen Vogue, it’s that young people are dominating our culture and they’re going to shape it in a way that we really aren’t expecting, particularly in matters of gender and sexuality,” Phillip tells Business of Fashion, which also reported he suggested to Anna Wintour: “Wouldn’t it be incredible if Condé Nast were the first publisher to really step up to the plate and want to be the ones who were telling those stories in an authentic and personal way?”
Them as a publication will develop a community and its content strategy will focus on quality rather than quantity. “With everyone publishing the same news round-up at 8am, sending the same similar newsletters…it gets exhausting and I think consumers are just trying to be more selective,” Phillip tells Business of Fashion. “We’re not expecting hundreds of millions of impressions to deliver on a campaign. But what we are hoping for is a uniquely engaged and extremely impactful storytelling experience.” The publication will report on news and politics within the LGBTQ community and fashion and beauty coverage will be genderless.
Phillip has worked on the launch of Them with Anna Wintour and newly appointed chief revenue officer Pamela Drucker Mann, alongside chief digital officer Fred Santapria and general manager of digital Matt Starker. BoF also reports that Pamela has been selective in partnering brands with Them saying, “I’ve actually been in meetings where I said to clients, ‘If this is a diversity project for you, don’t do it’.” Burberry are one of its launching partners with chief creative officer Christopher Bailey telling BoF: “I am delighted that we are partnering with Them for the launch of an important new digital publication that will champion authenticity, intellect, style and culture for those who are shaping the future of our world.” Other “visionaries” include the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Google, and Lyft, Phillip says on a Instagram announcement.
Phillip will continue his roles at Teen Vogue and Allure alongside Them, meaning the new publication will not have just one editor. Instead, Pamela has developed an “internal incubator that will evaluate and launch media brands, big and small, in the future,” says BoF.
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