This website is an initiative of J-Lab.

Who's Blogging

Jordan Young and Selena Fragassi
Jordan Young works at the Knight Lab at Northwestern University. Selena Fragassi is Chicago Magazine's pop/rock critic.

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Project Blog: Boxx Magazine

A newly launched site to cover women artists who are shaping the music industry. Launching Boxx are Jordan Young of the Knight Lab at Northwestern University and Selena Fragassi, Chicago Magazine's pop/rock critic.

Re-Boxxing a Formula for Success
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Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Re-Boxxing a Formula for Success

March 2014

By Selena Fragassi
Boxx Magazine Co-Founder

Things are looking up for Boxx Magazine after it started 2014 overcoming key organizational and fundraising challenges. Founding partner Jordan Young decided to leave the organization to steer her career in other directions. I opted to move forward but I knew I couldn't continue with just myself alone. While I have strong contacts in the music industry, networks with writers and photographers and a strong creative vision for the magazine, I needed help with business matters and growing the brand through strategic partnerships and marketing that could eventually make us profitable.

To accomplish these tasks, I brought on three new key figures, all of whom were already Boxx contributors. Carly Fisher came on board to be in charge of business and partnership development. She organized our GoFundMe.com crowdfunding campaign and premiere party, is coordinating several partnerships, trained our team in new social media strategies, and is monitoring metrics for our site. She also started implementing Pay-Per-Click marketing and has provided new ideas for content.

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   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 04/09 at 01:23 PM

Boxx Magazine Harnesses Eventbrite and GoFundMe
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Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Tasked with raising $2,000 to leverage a matching amount, Boxx Magazine, the online music magazine for women artists, has turned to GoFundMe for crowd funding and to Eventbrite for an event to help make the match.

Boxx magazine, which launched last year with a $12,000 J-Lab Women Media Entrepreneur award, will receive another $2,000 if it can raise the same amount from others.

Fourteen days into its GoFundMe campaign, Boxx as of Feb. 4 had raised more than $1,300 from 37 people.

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   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 02/05 at 10:07 AM

Tips for Finding the Right Interns for your Startup
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Thursday, November 21, 2013

By Jordan Young

There has been some controversy recently about unpaid internships, mainly in the fashion industry, but problems can occur in any industry. Be appreciative of your interns’ time and willingness to help your company succeed. If you are an organization that does not possess the financial stability to hire employees then internships are the best option you’ve got. Sure finding people with suitable skills who are willing to devote some of their time can work out, but often these people are extremely busy with their own projects and jobs that pay them and thus take priority.

Here's how we brought on our first two amazing interns at Boxx.

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   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 11/21 at 12:14 PM

Building Momentum at Boxx
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Monday, November 11, 2013

By Selena Fragassi

In the past few months, Boxx has maintained a strong editorial calendar with an equal mix of hearty features/interviews, album reviews, concert reviews and book reviews as we initially promised to our readers when we first launched. As well, the addition of intern Gillian McGhee has allowed us to maintain our regular channel of Videos of the Day and the addition of intern Dana Getz has provided for regular news postings three times per week. We have operated on a schedule of posting new content every day, sometimes multiple pieces per day, which has given readers the impetus to revisit us with the trust that our content will be consistently updated. It has also given Boxx credibility as a verifiable source of exclusive and relevant content.

Of significance, we have landed access to notable artists such as Riot Grrrl pioneer Kathleen Hanna, up-and-coming L.A. rock band Deap Vally and arguably 2013’s best new artist, Savages. In the fall, we also wrapped up our festival coverage with Riot Fest, which capped a great season of intense, comprehensive previews and reviews of SXSW, Pitchfork Music Fest, Lollapalooza and Outside Lands. Ground coverage and video interviews gave us a strong push and visible presence (we had branded T-shirts we wore and gave out to interviewees). I understand not every outlet was given credentials, but we were able to secure our spots, which gives us leverage to grow on these opportunities for next year. Jordan and I have begun discussing how we contribute to the overall festival experience next year, with such ideas as media tents, Wi-Fi branded sponsorship and day parties being considered.

In assessing our web traffic reports, we uncovered a significant appeal for our video interviews (our Sky Ferreira episode received 10,000 views alone!). We plan on continuing this series on a regular basis and are considering moving to a more considerable video platform in the near future.

In the past months, we’ve instituted new regular features such as our Video of the Day Throwback Thursday series, which gives us a chance to revisit some of the important music videos of the not-so-distant pass; as well, we launched “This Week in Women’s Music History,” which profiles an important historical moment and analyzes how it is relevant to today’s modern female musician. We also instituted a new section called InBoxx, which focuses on women inside the music industry who are the cogs and wheels behind the system. So far we have profiled Danger Village PR owner Beth Martinez and 18 Love music app developer Natalie Edell.

In the coming weeks, we’ll develop our well-rounded coverage of the “Best of 2013” lists and features – these features routinely do well for other publications, and we will enter the forum with our own picks while looking forward to another strong year in 2014.

   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 11/11 at 09:42 AM

Exclusive Content, Promotion Build Boxx’s Traffic
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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Exclusive interviews and recaps of our content in other media outlets helped Boxx generate some record traffic numbers in the past month.

In addition, Twitter recently granted the company the shorter handle of @boxx, which will help people to remember us. Moreover, Boxx has been accepted into the Northwestern Law Clinic. The clinic and others experienced in entrepreneurship and branding will help us with the creation of a new logo, trademarking and branding.

In June, Boxx had nearly 4,000 unique visitors, almost double the number from May. The boost in traffic is related to interviews, quotes or recaps in such other media outlets, such as WBEZ, a Blurt Magazine story, and links to our video interviews on Blabbermouth.net. Also juicing traffic are such exclusive interviews, as the June 26 post on Teri Gender Bender, which helped create the highest spike for the month at 1,400 unique visitors that day. Our video interview with Lzzy Hale from Halestorm drew in about 1,000 unique visits on June 3.

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   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 07/16 at 11:13 AM

Setting up an LLC and Building Content
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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

It’s been a busy couple of months for Boxx Magazine. In late March, we met with a lawyer – a first for both of us – and became an LLC, a limited liability company. We weighed the decision of involving a lawyer especially since it costs a pretty penny. We could have pursued an LLC without one. However, since we are a partnership, we wanted to make sure that we have a lawyer working on behalf of the company and not one of us individually. Our lawyer also helped us draft an operating agreement, which is a must if you are starting a business. It was tough to narrow down the right business entity for our situation. I listened to different ideas and considered many options, but my initial instinct and our lawyer pointed us toward filing as an LLC.

Since Boxx Magazine has two founders, we will be the managing members of the LLC and the taxes will pass through to us. This means any taxes are reported on our personal income tax returns, and any tax due is paid at the individual level. With an LLC ,we are free to establish any organizational structure we agree on, so this offers us some flexibility as we grow. A corporation, on the other hand, would have a board of directors overseeing the major business decisions of the company, and officers who manage the day-to-day affairs.

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   • Posted by Selena Fragassi on 06/12 at 01:36 PM