ASK DAN: Business of Blogging, Gay Vibes, Our Playlist
May 15th, 2014
1. The Business of Blogging
I think many of us readers would like to know more about the business side of Articles of Style; what projects you’re working on behind-the-scenes, your vision for the growing brand, etc. Personally, I’m as fascinating by the entrepreneurial spirit as I am with all the fashion & style stuff. Would love if you could share some insights!
Funny you should ask this Marcel, as we’re currently dealing with a server crash due to an unexpected spike in traffic that set us back a couple months on website development… It’s been a very frustrating couple of days.
It’s a good question, but a long one to answer since we have so many irons in the fire right now. Here are some of the projects we’re currently working on, at different stages of development:
- Bringing on a business development team so Alex and I can focus on producing more, higher quality, content (2-3 posts/day)
- The Style Guide development continues to be a focus for us, even with recent set-backs
- We’re currently negotiating a production and distribution contract with an LA-based media house to develop a new web video series
- Our new e-commerce Shop will soon house limited edition products designed in collaboration with some of our favorite brands/designers (and eventually the shop will hold my own namesake line)
- An updated commenting system that will make user interaction more fluid, and easier to slide between the elements of our website (Articles, Style Guide, E-Commerce Shop, etc)
- A weekly newsletter with exclusive content and discounts only for Articles of Style readers
- We’ve been slowly developing a concept for a Articles of Style hardcover book
- “Articles of Style Premium”, a subscription based service with exclusive content and “insider perks” including private sales and event invites
- Articles of Style is hitting the road! We’ll be traveling from city to city to document the style and culture, set-up profiles with local style enthusiasts, and throw private men’s style events for our local readers
That said, as we continue to develop Articles of Style into the premier destination for men’s style advice and inspiration, the website also continues to serve as a vehicle for my personal career as a menswear influencer and relatable personality in the industry. Many readers think that this “job” is all about organizing photoshoots and publishing new articles. I wish it were that simple. The reality is that I spend 80% of my workday on non-content related tasks such as web development, negotiating advertising contracts, editing sponsorship offers from brands, consulting for menswear brands, etc. I’m a businessman building a brand more than an artist creating content…at least for the time being.
Blogging as a business is all about diverse revenue streams, and developing a valuable niche to deliver a premium full-service experience. It’s still just the beginning for us, and I look forward to bringing some of these newer projects to life.
2. Giving Off “Gay” Vibes
Hi Articles of Style Team,
I live in a small town where t-shirts and Wranglers are the norm. I enjoy clothes and dressing well, but sometimes I find that being over-dressed in a non-fashion town can be off-putting to some people. Also, some ignorant folks here call me “gay” because of the way I dress. Is this something you’ve dealt with? Any advice? I know you’re a small town guy. Thx, love the site.
– Tim L.
Good question. And yes, I have dealt with this. When I first started getting into style and fashion, I was probably forcing it and overdoing it. Partly to prove a point, but also partly because it takes experience to appreciate subtlety. Early on my slim fits were a little too slim, accessories were a little too too dandy, face was a little too clean shaven…
I also think that some of the people calling you “gay” are using the term in an ignorant sense for meaning “weird” or “out of the ordinary”. They don’t necessarily think you prefer men.
Regardless, though, the more comfortable I got with style, the more natural it came to me and the more comfortable I felt with it (which people can notice immediately). Over time I’ve also developed a more masculine look, with simpler outfits based around classic menswear pieces, clothing with more worn-in character, and of course, now I prefer the scruffy beard.
It’s also very important to consider context for style. For example, I don’t wear slim three-piece suits back on the farm. I keep it simple in some casual workwear that still looks well “put together”, but not out of place.
Ultimately; consider scaling it back a little but don’t let others bother you. Keep doing you. Guys called me gay for years…then I started dating their girlfriends…haha. Stay with it, you will build confidence and find your niche. It takes time but it will eventually be working for you.
3. Articles of Style Music List
Dan, I always love the music you guys use in your videos (or those coming back, by the way?) as well as the music you’ve linked to in past articles. I guess this is not related to fashion, but definitely style…What’s on your playlist? Put us on to some tracks that inspire you!
– Alejandro C.
Great question my man. Music is a huge passion of mine, perhaps even beyond clothing. And you’re right: a gentleman’s soundtrack is a big part of his personal style. I almost always have some type of music playing – life is better with a soundtrack – but the style of music varies greatly depending on the occasion, mood, time of day, etc.
To answer your question directly, I pulled up some of my most played tracks this month, in no particular order. Maybe it speaks to where I’m at in life… Hopefully I can put you on to some new artists, because music can be very transformative…
Make sure to use some proper audio!
- The Tallest Man on Earth – The Dreamer
- Curtis Mayfield – Pusherman
- Melody Gardot – Baby I’m A Fool
- Kings of Leon – Beautiful War
- Drake – Trophies
- Boombox – Midnight On The Run
- James Blake – Limit to Your Love
- The Weeknd – High for This
- Erykha Badu – On & On
- Stephen Marley – Hey Baby
- Bahamas – Lost in the Light
- Notorious BIG – Story to Tell
Thanks, as always, for reading.
Yours in style,
Dan Trepanier & Articles of Style
Special thanks to @louisnicolasdarbon for the artwork