#CAREERGOALS: KATHERINE POWER AND HILARY KERR OF WHOWHATWEAR
Twenty-something females have long been obsessed with WhoWhatWear.
From it’s street style coverage to helping us track down that bag or pair of sunglasses every it-girl is wearing, WWW truly was the first website to tap into our obsession with celebrity style – both on and off the red carpet. But did you know it has been almost TEN YEARS since Who What Wear first launched in 2006? And it’s co-founders are now the owners of a multi-million dollar media company, three websites, three books and a clothing line?!
Here are a few reasons why Katherine Power and Hillary Kerr are the ultimate #CAREERGOALS…
FILLING A FASHION VOID
When Katherine Power and Hillary Kerr first met in 2005, they quickly realised they had a lot in common. Power was the West Coast Editor for ELLE magazine, and Kerr was the New York-based features writer for ELLE. They were both in their twenties and, like us, were spending all of their time on the computer pouring over celebrity content.
The girls decided to launch a daily celebrity style e-newsletter which would tap into the world’s rising obsession with paparazzi and gossip but also incorporate the fashion-conscious elements Power and Kerr were used to publishing in ELLE. The duo felt like everyone was talking about where the celebs were holidaying and who they were dating, but no one was focusing on what they were actually wearing (obv, really really important).
BUILDING A BRAND FROM THE GROUND UP
When Who What Wear first launched in 2006, Power and Kerr had to learn a lot of specific skills in a short amount of time because they had no staff to delegate tasks to.
Power taught herself how to use Photoshop, using Powerpoint to plan the website’s home pages and Google-ing technical terms they didn’t know. The prolific pair now manage roughly 170 employees across content creation, technology and sales & marketing. They built WWW on the idea of publishing just one post a day and today the website boasts about 120 posts a week!
Because Power and Kerr had no financial backing either they had to rely on organic circulation of their e-newsletter when it first launched, emailing it out to 200 friends and family. But because they were contributing something new and un-heard of to the online world they very quickly experienced impressive organic growth through word of mouth (basically, it was 2006 and everyone really wanted to know where they could buy Nicole Richie’s over-sized sunglasses).
FASHION MEETS SCIENCE MEETS BUSINESS
Power has said, “The way that you communicate your brand, idea, company, project or vision to the rest of the world is of paramount importance.”, and while their initial success was an organic process, all of their business decisions thus far have been carefully considered and executed. They have carefully studied their content feedback and analytics, and used the patterns from that research to dictate what their next move is.
In August of this year Power and Kerr raised US $8 million in venture funding from new and existing investors, including Amazon. This has allowed them to continue to expand into new realms such as their clothing line with Target which is launching in the US early next year.
ALWAYS LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
When Kerr started Who What Wear ten years ago she said that she dreamed of one day having a clothing line in Target, and in February next year her dream will be a reality. The line is inspired by the street style, trends and celebrity looks they cover on their website and will be a combination of art (trend forecasting) and science (analysing data of what the WWW readers are shopping and when).
This year they also launched a book called ‘The Career Code: Must-Know Rules for a Strategic, Stylish and Self-Made Career‘. Because with ten year’s worth of experience running a fashion and digital empire, the girls clearly know a thing or two about attaining professional success, flawlessly. The book is filled with pragmatic, insightful advice and covers everything from how to nail an interview to how to negotiate a pay-rise.
The WWW brand has evolved from being a celebrity style e-newsletter to a multi-million dollar media group with three websites, a best-selling career guide book and a clothing line.
Yeah…talk about #CAREERGOALS