Zev Norotsky On the Launch of New Electronic Dance Music and DJ Magazine “Elektro”

Electronic music has changed nightlife forever, for better…for worse. It has made DJ’s rock stars, strange and remote places destinations, and has filled clubs and stadiums. It’s inspired Woodstockian festivals. It has defined, along with mash up/mixed format, a renaissance in nightlife. When clubs were going through their doldrums just a few years back, it was argued that there had not been a new genre of music to lead us out of the boredom. Mixed format combined other genres and was considered by some to be a sort of wishy-washy sound for the musically-challenged masses. DJs like AM certainly shattered that misconception. Electronic was lumped in as a progression of house and not much new. This has proven to be an inadequate description of the sound that has swept the world. Many DJs I have spoken to speak of how it has united people worldwide, as superstar DJs play for hundreds of thousands, from Asia to South America.

Zev Norotsky formerly of Mirrorball and Get There PR, has joined Harris Publications as president of its H360 Group. They are launching elektro, a new magazine…
"[It’s] geared toward electronic dance music/DJ fans… elektro’s mission is to take you behind the turntables and into the lives of DJs, sharing their passion for the music, giving fans an all-access backstage pass. From Tiesto’s sold-out gig, to David Guetta’s new album and the Swedish House Mafia’s unreleased track, elektro will show you the tools to make the music and the lifestyle they live. Electronic music is now the fastest-growing genre in music. DJs are the new rock stars and are selling out arenas around the world. elektro brings you face- to-face with the fans that attend these events, along with powerful marketing solutions including print, online, and experiential activations at sold-out shows and festivals across the globe."
Tiesto is on the first issue’s cover. It will come out quarterly. I sent Zev a few questions (electronically of course) and got these answers:
What is elektro?
elektro is a new platform for electronic dance music enthusiasts to learn about DJ culture and their favorite artists and producers. It’s definitely much more than a magazine as we have also built in a comprehensive digital ecosystem and a large special event calendar for 2012 to round out our presence nationwide. This includes our online hub at www.elektrodaily.com, very active social media engagement, and strategic partnerships with Spotify, future.fm, mixcloud etc. We will also be distributed at all the large festivals including Ultra and Electric Daisy in New York and Las Vegas, etc.
You have been a promoter/marketing guy;  is elektro an exit strategy…a way out of nightlife’s day-to-day, er… night-to-night, or a natural progression and a deeper commitment?
I must refer to a quote from Steve Jobs where he said, "You can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards." I got my start in nightlife very early working the doors at Limelight and Kit Kat Klub when I was in college, striking out a few times on my own and eventually landing with Eddie Dean at Pacha NYC.  Nightlife is my absolute passion and I like to say that I got my Masters following Eddie around as we launched the Pacha brand in America. That was, by far, the most valuable experience of my life as I learned not only the importance of branding and guidelines, but also how vital nightlife can be to the world of marketing and how strong the connection is between consumers and brands. I have been jumping up and down on corporate board room tables for the last four or five years, begging brand managers to pay attention to what’s going on in electronic dance music (EDM) and people are finally paying attention. It’s an amazing feeling and now I have elektro to make sense of it all. I never could have imagined this starting out but when I look back it all makes perfect sense.
Everybody in the world is going electronic..or is it elektronic… as online is more and more the way people want it…why print?
We are very in tune with the digital space. I actually moderated a panel a few weeks back during Social Media Week based on a theory that the explosion of EDM in America is intrinsically tied to social media; that’s why we have created an extensive online presence across every single medium there is for us to share content. We are curating playlists with Spotify, streaming from events with future.fm, YouTube, Instagram, etc., you name it. The honest answer is you need everything to succeed and we take a 360 approach here. The sweet spot for me is how everything connects from the live events, the social media, and the print piece. That gives us maximum leverage as both an editorial property and a marketing vehicle for brands.
How did Tiesto become your first cover boy?
This was such a no-brainer for me; he is arguably the most iconic DJ of all time and truly personifies how far dance music has come in America, from the initial burst in late ’90s, to now. I literally made a mock-up of elektro about a year ago with him on the cover to show my partners what I look at every day to remind me how this all started.
It’s a quarterly; will there be events to celebrate each issue at various clubs around the world? Will the cover boy be the DJ? Will the distribution of the magazine at these events be a huge part of the marketing strategy?
Absolutely. We are gearing up for a massive launch during Miami Music Week. In addition to a private launch party with Roger Sanchez that we are hosting for the industry on Thursday, March 22 at The Setai, we are going to be distributed in the VIP section at Ultra, are an official media partner of Winter Music Conference, and will be hosting events all week at the National Hotel, Villa221, Mansion, as well as a big in-store event with Guess Jeans on Saturday 3/24. We’re also working on an official launch party in New York on April 14th at Pacha NYC which will be a sort of homecoming for me I guess, so I’m definitely looking forward to that.

Sally Singer Talks ‘T’ magazine

Sally Singer, recently crowned editor-in-chief of T Magazine, granted a rare interview to PAPER magazine about her new position and where she hopes to take the New York Times‘ bible of style. Known for her brainy approach to fashion and her discerning eye for new talent, expectations are high for the former Vogue editor, who’s picking up with where the revered Stefano Tonchi, now at the helm of W magazine, left off. “The bigger lifestyle shifts that everyone is adjusting to lately—the needs to bicycle more, to consider locally grown food, to think about how we live with technology, which is a huge question—are informing everything,” Singer says. “Fashion is just what you put on to go out into the street to deal with all the other stuff. So everything has to be part of it.”

“Everyone gets dressed every day and wants to look better. It’s a common denominator. So the question is, what are you going to put on and what is it going to say about you in the world?” Singer remains dedicated to the idea that fashion is individualistic and specific to ones personality—there’s no one right answer to the question of what to wear. “When people ask me what they should wear for evening, I say, ‘If you’re most comfortable in your pajamas, then wear pajamas. Do not put on a ball gown, ’cause you’re not going to look good in it.'” it’s a point of view that seems markedly different from the rule-bound fare Vogue usually serves up, but that doesn’t mean Ms. Wintour’s influence will be null and void. In fact, Singer poached quite a few Voguettes for T, including “former associate fashion editor Ethel Park, who is now T’s senior fashion editor; as well as Tonne Goodman’s former assistant Sara Moonves and Vanessa Traina,” says Fashionista. To see what Singer’s new team and vision bring to T, check newsstands for her first (holiday) issue come December 5th.

Photo via PAPER Magazine

Fall Into 032c’s New Website

032c’s much-anticipated website has finally arrived. Editor-in-Chief Joerg Koch has opened up the archives to his 10-year-old Berlin-based magazine named after the bold red Pantone color-code that graces each issue’s cover. Scroll through the dozens of links to previously published material and you’ll find captivating pieces on heavyweights from every creative industry. As far as fashion is concerned, there are lengthy stories on the likes of Sally Singer (the soon-to-be Editor-in-Chief of T), Ingrid Sichy (of Interview), and Carine Roitfeld (Editrix of French Vogue), as well as Bless, Marc Jacobs, and Prada. The magazine likewise features top notch fashion photography (think Steven Meisel, Inez & Vinoodh, and Nick Knight) that never feels derivative.

Back in December of 2009, countless magazines were slimming down severely, if not shuttering their doors altogether, while 032c was increasing ad revenue and generally thriving. The number-one reason: content, content, content. Awarded the German media award for Lead Magazine of the Year in 2008, 032c is proving with its new online expansion that it can compete no matter the medium. In case you’re not familiar and want to see what all the fuss is about, you can pick up old issues of the culture magazine at its online store.

Print Ad Outlook Not Good

Bad news for print magazines: advertising isn’t expected to recover from its current downturn anytime soon. “Print ad spending in U.S. consumer magazines is set to decline again in 2010, 2011, and 2012 before finally rebounding in 2013 and 2014, according to the outlook, which was released today,” says AdAge of a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers. But it’s not all doom and gloom: predictions aren’t especially staggering when it comes to losses in advertising in months ahead. The aforementioned report estimates that in all likelihood ad spending will drop “7% this year, 3.5% next year and 1.1% in 2012 before increasing 0.6% in 2013.” That’s after a 21% tumble this past year.

One place that ad revenue is growing is in magazines’ digital sector. In fact, while TV, radio, and print have suffered quite a lot of ad losses, “U.S. consumer magazines’ digital ad revenue never declined in the recession, just grew at a far slower rate.” As for the print ads that will surface in fashion magazines, expect to see a bigger push toward interactivity as showcased in a recent issue of W. At least there’s something to be cheerful about.

Lucky’s $100 or Less Issue & W Magazine’s Interactive Ads

Lucky‘s latest issue narrows its shopping lens to focus exclusively on products marked $100 or less. A delayed but better-late-than-never reaction to the recession, the concept will no doubt appeal to the hordes of still-unemployed shoppers looking to spend as frugally as possible. “We’re totally into the $5-and-under beauty page, which includes lowest cost-per-use body washes, the best $2 smoky eyeshadow duo, and even vanity accessories from labels including Paul & Joe,” says Racked of the new issue. And its not just accessories and beauty products that are highlighted; there are plenty of dresses, bikinis, and other summer essentials marked at an equally digestible price point. W magazine is also trying something new.

For its April issue, the fashion rag, which recently appointed T Magazine’s Stefano Tonchi as editor-in-chief, started testing out a new kind of reader interactivity.”W Magazine ran a special issue where readers could take a photo of any ad with their phone and after they send it to a special number, a message would be received with more details, information on deals, and a special competition,” says PSFK. Titled ‘W Desires,’ the campaign intends to make it so that “on any advertising page, readers can snap a photo of the ad and send it to w@pongr.com to receive a message from the advertising brand: a link to buy; a special shopping offer; or video such as behind-the-scenes or runway shows.” Not a bad move, considering interactive promotions are one way print magazines might actually be able to keep a leg up—or at least even with —on the web.

iPad Means Fewer Full-Frontals In Fashion Mags

The iPad has fashion magazines shaking in their designer booties. And now not just because the ever-expanding digital terrain might bring about the death of print. It might mark a return to puritanical photo spreads as well. American magazines have long been significantly more prude when it comes to featuring fully nude bodies, thus stateside publications have little to worry about. But, for European fashion magazines, from the likes of Dazed & Confused and French Vogue to Purple Fashion, which doesn’t put out a single issue without a fully-frontal nude spread, there’s much cause for concern. “Magazines planning to launch iPad editions for the Apple’s glossy e-Reader device will have to censor themselves to make into Apple’s No Porn app store,” says Shiny Shiny.

“A [Dazed & Confused] insider revealed that the mag’s iPad edition has been nicknamed the Iran edition by the people putting it together, giving the parallels between censorship in the Muslim theocracy and the iTunes store.” And they’re not likely to be the only ones with a proverbial bone to pick with Steve Jobs should magazines have to restrict their showcasing of nudity. “It’s even more ironic because the iPad has been billed as the saviour of the magazine industry and also given Apple’s reputation as a maintstay of the creative industries,” Shiny Shiny continues. So, while the iPad might allow fashion photographers, stylists and designers to showcase their work in an entirely new, high-resolution light, if their creativity for how to present those images is censored, the novelty of these new tablets, at least for the fashion community, has the potential to wear off fast.

PAPER Magazine Now Playing Shopkeep

The roster of magazines adding e-commerce to their online outfits has been being beefed up quite a bit these past few months. In additional to original content, news sources are now looking to double as retailers, which seems to be the pervading common philosophy as to how editorial outlets can stay relevant. InStyle has found an e-commerce partner in StyleFeeder, while Elle has buddied up with Rue La La; Vogue has scored the much-coveted position as collaborator with Gilt Groupe. Lucky, Another and Refinery 29 have, on the other hand, taken playing shopkeeper into their own hands and introduced virtual boutiques unassociated with any specific major retailer. And, now PAPER is putting itself in the mix.

The indie NYC culture rag has launched its own shop, thanks to the help of major European retailer Yoox. The latter has long been synonymous with high-end designer wares as well as stock from a slew of avant-garde fashion houses. Together, the two are serving up a self-proclaimed “one-stop shop for savvy styles, limited edition looks and gift ideas from the best names in fashion and design.” Essentially, PAPER is breaking down certain looks — take Alexa Chung’s tuxedo from this year’s Costume Gala, for instance — and linking through to the various pieces that make up the ensemble, all sold at Yoox.com.

It’s by no means a bad model; but it does mean that while it’s called the PAPER store, the magazine is merely highlighting pieces from Yoox, then sending shoppers in that direction should they come ready to put their credit card to work. Considering a report by Women’s Wear Daily today says that Yoox’s profits have “quintupled in the first quarter,” the retailer is surely doing quite a few things right: namely, running e-commerce outlets for everyone from Marni and Pucci to Armani, Valentino and Cavalli. In other words, PAPER is in very good company.

Fashion Mags Continue To Embrace E-Commerce

Numerous magazines have been embracing the increasingly popular editorial meets e-commerce model in recent seasons. Lucky has its own shopping system as does Another Magazine; not to mention online news outlet Refinery 29. Meanwhile, Vogue has partnered with Gilt Groupe while Elle has teamed with Rue La La to offer special shopping initiatives, says the Business of Fashion. But, few fashion rags have committed so vehemently to upping the shopping ante as In Style.

A property of Time Inc., In Style originally launched its shopping feature back in 2007. Since then it has “moved more than $10 million in product,” says its director of digital operations, Simeen Mohsen. Then, “in January, the publisher acquired StyleFeeder, a personal shopping engine that uses pattern recognition technology to make product recommendations,” adds BoF. And, now comes news that the magazine will now feature exclusive items from one of Los Angeles’ most celebrated luxury consignment retailers—Decadestwo.

The new shopping facet launches today. “Every Tuesday, the site will feature a selection of the boutique’s clothing and accessories curated from the closets of consignors such as Sarah Jessica Parker, Courtney Love, Rachel Zoe, Selma Blair, and Julianne Moore,” says Daily Front Row. Shoppers can then snag the wares in question by using a “dedicated reservation email” that will only be listed on InStyle.com. But the partnership won’t be relegated solely to shopping, there’s an editorial element as well. Christos Garkinos—co-owner of Decadestwo—will contribute to the magazine’s blog, “What’s Right Now,” offering handpicks and answers to reader’s style queries.

Columbia Has a New Fashion Rag

One of the last things Ivy Leagues schools may collectively connote is fashion. But, as we saw with Harvard last fall–the institution launched its very own clothing line of “contemporary menswear based on classic Ivy League style–academics may in fact know a thing or two about style. Or, at least they may think they do. Following in Harvard’s footsteps is Columbia, who will launch its very first fashion magazine this spring. Called Hoot, the magazine’s debut issue features none other than real housewife Kelly Bensimon on its cover. Why? “We hope to embrace our differences in the magazine, whether we dress by strict orthodox rules or play up the drama for television,” a blog post on Hoot‘s website announcing the magazine’s launch reads.

Crack jokes all you want, the mag (which, kudos to Hoot, is all available online) covers some pretty serious style terrain. Not only is the magazine run by an ethnically diverse staff (not something you see very often in the offices of Conde Nast or Hearst’s fashion rags), it tackles some more heavy subject matter, even if it is all still fashion. The first issue looks at what young orthodox Jews are wearing these days, as well as profiles Lisa Cant, a Columbia student and professional model since the age of 14. There’s also an original fashion editorial featuring a Columbia student that is by no means your average size zero mannequin. Finally some fashion images featuring real women that don’t pull you one extreme or the other. In case those weren’t enough, one more reason to stay tuned: a new website is slated to premiere soon.