After overhauling RollingStone.com in 2010, Wenner Media is turning its attention to another publication with a less-than-impressive Web presence: Men’s Journal, whose current site is more of an afterthought to the magazine than a standalone digital destination.
Men's Journal is planning to unveil a new site this spring that, in a departure from many magazine websites that still tend to mirror their print counterparts, will revolve around product reviews and advice.
“We’re going to do is extend what the magazine does so well, and that is expertise in men’s lifestyle and adventure,” said Bill Crandall, head of digital content at Wenner. “The core of the website is going to be recommending the best things to do, the best things to see, and the best things to experience for men.”
Many magazines have been jumping on e-commerce partnerships to offset soft ad revenue lately. Whether Men’s Journal will sell merchandise through the site is still being discussed, but Crandall called it a “logical extension.”
He did say, however, that the site would only feature products or destinations that have been tested by editorial. “The stuff that we are recommending will be the stuff that we’ve experienced, so we’re thinking that our recommendations will go a long way and provide a nice layer on top of commerce,” Crandall said.
Rather than siphoning Web posts directly from the magazine, the new Men’s Journal site will feature original content, said Crandall. (That will likely include a good deal of video, to take advantage of Rolling Stone’s new studios at the Wenner offices.)
Men’s Journal is also planning to bring in a new team of Web-specific producers and editors who will work closely with the magazine’s existing staff.
Meanwhile, the title still hasn't named a new publisher to replace Michael Wolfe, who defected for The Week last month.