"Eternal frat boy" culture tends to isolate women: the abusive/nagging girlfriend in The Hangover, disapproving wives in Old School. In reality, my college years were more Frank the Tank than Allure magazine. That's why I prefer men's magazines over women's -- the information is a million times more useful than another method for applying eye-shadow.
If you agree, you'll love Thrillist.com, a site that sends a daily newsletter of cool, unique, useful goods, sites, and services, like customized t-shirts that show off your resume. "Slow learner, hates details and working in groups..." as the inevitably ironic version might say.
"There's always some element of service in anything we cover -- a suggestion to go here, buy this. And there has to be something about it that's entertaining and funny," says late twenty-something C.E.O. Ben Lerer who founded the site in Manhattan with Adam Rich, a fraternity brother from the University of Pennsylvania. The two wanted to bridge the gap between stodgy local guides and classic men's magazines. "Esquire is going to tell you vests are in this season; we're going to tell you where sales in your city, for clothing we think is really cool, can be had. We're connecting the dots."
Want to get cash for your old electronics? Thrillist introduces you to YouRenew, which pays you for recycling your old gadgets. In love with illustration? Check out Molly Crabapple's sex-filled graphic novel, Scarlett Takes Manhattan.
Covering a dozen cities, including Miami, Washington, DC, San Francisco, Thrillist has a growing readership offering tips and ideas for expansion into other cities. Lerer says they plan to launch Seattle and Austin sites in the next two months and are looking for anyone plugged into the local PR, food, city guide scene and has been a resident of at least five years, with journalism school a plus.
The editorial staff of 18 is made up of men, ages 21 to 35, which doesn't mean the site is against hiring women. "Women tend to sound a little misogynistic, because they're trying too hard to sound like guys. They come off as jerks," says Lerer. (When will we understand each other?!) "Ultimately, the most important thing is someone who's humorous, can network efficiently, and is a one person show."
Expect a party when Thrillist comes to town. Last summer, in celebration of launching the Las Vegas site, Thrillist flew 150 people, mostly journalists and one Equinox-sponsored fortune teller, to Vegas, putting up the party in the Mirage for the quick trip. In each of its locations, Thrillist is rabbid on throwing free events sponsored by marketers. "Events are core to the brand. They help us close advertising deals and help our advertisers touch the consumer," says Lerer. Sounds like a good recession survival and growth strategy. Now if Facebook could do that, imagine how much more time we'll spend living than refreshing status updates.
In New York alone, Thrillist sponsored a rioja wine crawl and five nights straight of Absolute vodka sponsored parties with Las Vegas bartenders mixing up crazy drinks. And something called Thrillist Jam'n in the Sky Party at the Hudson Terrace, pictured. I have yet to attend one of these, but a Thrillist party sounds way more fun than any Washington Post salon and helps build the brand and audience. Subscribers to the newsletter went from 500,000 in January to nearly a million today.
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