Business/Advertising: Marlen Horn: firstname.lastname@example.org
Editorial: Linda LaSala: email@example.com
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the girlawhirl.com editorial policy
As of December 1, 2009, The Federal Trade Commission has required that all websites disclose whether or not they have received compensation – in any way – for what’s been written about a product, service or subject. The editors at girlawhirl.com take this new guideline seriously, so a quick review of the girlawhirl.com editorial policy appears to be in order:
First and foremost, Girlawhirl.com is not a blog. Our articles are planned in advance, well researched and edited for both accuracy and grammatical errors. Articles are written a couple of weeks ahead of time and the editors spend many hours testing, trying and researching items that are featured. Remember, Girlawhirl’s just like your best friend – she’ll keep you up to date on the latest and greatest!
Sometimes an editor loves a personal purchase that she’s made so much that it inspires an article – the recent feature on the Winter Foliage Silk Blouse is a great example of this. The blouse was purchased and worn by our editor – not given to her by the manufacturer. Other times, editors may spot a trend and request specific items – usually cosmetics – for review. It is standard operating procedure for cosmetics companies to send products to editors – print magazines often refer to their ‘beauty closets,’ that are well stocked with cosmetics and beauty items. When girlawhirl.com editors receive items that have been requested, they’re divvied up in the office and tested, with plenty of conversation and cross testing to follow – and only the best of them make it to a girlawhirl.com article.
There have been cases when an appliance or larger item’s been sent to girlawhirl.com for review. Sometimes they are returned, or, following the manufacturer’s instructions, donated after testing and extras may even be given away as part of Girlawhirl Giveaways. Girlawhirl.com editors have attended press preview events along side of print magazine editors and other web editors and bloggers to learn more about products. Lunch, dinner, cocktails, product samples and even transportation might be provided, but again, girlawhirl.com editors never write about things that they don’t feel will be of interest to the site’s readers who, for the most part, are busy fashion forward and health conscious women between the ages of 22-45.
So how does the site make money? Advertising. Whether it’s a banner ad or spot in the girlawhirl.com shopping mall there’s a dedicated team – completely separate from the editors – that work to sell ads on girlawhirl.com. And part of the advertising offering is what’s called a Girlawhirl Confidential – a sponsored message or advertorial. When these appear on the website they are clearly identified as “A Sponsored Message From…” Often there’s an offer or discount for girlawhirl.com readers to take advantage of, and they’re completely separated from the rest of the Girlawhirl.com articles on the website – they have their own ‘Confidential’ category.
There’s a little bit of Girlawhirl in every woman! We’re all busy, whether we’re working, taking care of kids or both. Managing life’s little details can get overwhelming, leaving no time to pick up a magazine or catch up on the latest news. And who’s got time to search the internet, with millions of sites added weekly? That’s what inspired a trend-spotting fashion designer to create girlawhirl.com.
In early 2005, during a 15 minute work-break, she surfed the web and couldn’t find sites that interested her: magazine sites were, at the time, just updating horoscopes daily, and other web-places focused too much on celebrity gossip for her taste. she uttered the three words that lead to the development of girlawhirl.com: “Where’s my Internet?”
A site full of useful information, with quick click-throughs, and easy to digest articles, was just what she and her friends needed. In addition to all the information they craved, it would have to be simple to navigate, and include helpful daily tools, like lists that could be used to keep track of things on their computer screens. And they’d have to be able to send the lists and articles to their hand-helds. After all, she couldn’t be the only one who inevitably left her grocery list on her desk when she left the office, but went no where without her phone or BlackBerry®.
The articles themselves wouldn’t just cover fashion, but all things fashionable and helpful – over a wide range of topics from beauty, travel and shopping to dining, eco-friendly ideas, home design and work-life balance, including maintaining friendships, fitness and health. They would have to answer all kinds of questions that she and her friends always chatted about, from “Do I have to wear that?” or “What clothes should I bring on my business trip to Hong Kong?” to “I have a free afternoon in Chicago – or London – or Rome – what should I do?” And there would have to be plenty of giveaways, because what kind of a friend wouldn’t share her finds?
Girlawhirl became the designer’s alter ego, and since going live in September, 2005, not a day goes by that the girlawhirl.com staff hasn’t provided useful information to busy women everywhere. From purse-sized “shopping cheat sheets” to explanations about what blue-ray discs are, Girlawhirl shares with her friends, always keeping in mind that readers have far more to do in a day than ever before.