How British GQ’s Adam Baidawi reimagined the legacy males’s luxury newsletter for a as much as date, world target audience

By Kayleigh Barber  •  January 30, 2024  •  4 min learn  •

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Adam Baidawi stepped into the role of British GQ’s head of editorial whine in November 2021 at a time when the legacy males’s model and lifestyle title used to be dealing with a indispensable pivot point in its identification. 

Now not most productive used to be Condé Nast reimagining its editorial and enterprise technique to be internationally structured, nonetheless the very thought of males’s model and luxury used to be evolving from a singular ideal image to embracing individuality. Baidawi, who had been a lifelong fan of the title, used to be also serving because the deputy world editorial director of GQ, and helped lead the refresh of the imprint, focusing first of all on new luxury and community.

On the most up-to-date episode of the Digiday Podcast, Baidawi shared how he applied the “new luxury” mentality to the newsletter’s social technique, events enterprise and video manufacturing, as well as how the shift to world operations strengthened the storytelling capability of GQ eventually of the globe. 

Under are highlights of conversation, which grasp been flippantly edited and condensed for clarity.

The foundation of the realm target audience technique 

Folks don’t relish culture in spirited geographical boundaries. In particular no longer now. Despite the incontrovertible truth that you dash again to fifteen-twelve months-extinct me paying a top class to steal an imported model of British GQ, I did that because I wished to portal correct into a undeniable field… And in reality curiously, before we even went by our world transformation, 40% of Condé Nast’s traffic used to be coming from outside the country in which the whine used to be created and posted. 

There used to be a 12-, and even 14-week window [before the international shift] in which three numerous editions of GQ printed three numerous covers with Rami Malik… I’m talking three fully numerous shoot days, three fully numerous hours-long interviews, all the pieces… None of us knew that the others were working on this Rami Malik story. What a huge damage of cash and time and creativity. 

Now we have story editors per story, who, from the outset of their story, will partner with their peers on the fabricate group, who also, to boot to designing the print journal, manufacture the circulation Instagram story displays for chronicle functions and so that they work with the social group. The arc of a fable going from the reporting stage to closing for print to launching on social, or on occasion skipping the print course of altogether, is procedure more drawn out now. And so much more considerate. A gargantuan phase of that is trying to rework the capability we talk with each and every other as a group and the capability we collaborate, and trying to manufacture so without having too many meetings. 

A story editor will now grasp accountability for steering a fable by each and every stage of that course of and grasp foremost accountability for constructing out the premise with the fabricate, visual and social teams to make certain that it launches in as gorgeous a procedure as that you should accept as true with.

Evolving events

In 2022, we made a lovely radical decision to, no 1, switch the match from September to November to align with a brand new world time desk we wanted to grasp for Males of the Year, [and number two], we reduce the visitor checklist from 800 odd folk to about 220 folk for the dinner. We eliminated the staging, we eliminated the awards, and as a replacement we created what I’d simplest advise as admire a terribly noteworthy marriage ceremony reception dinner… A pair of folk stand up and offers toasts and honor their mates… and then you definately’ve got a terribly worthy celebration. And that became the British GQ Man of the Year structure.

Nevertheless I also belief there used to be a huge different that wasn’t being taken superb thing about with whine. This ought to be a social video dwelling crawl… these are about a of essentially the most notorious folk on this planet, and so that they’re dressed to the nines, we’ve bought to be taking pictures this. The supreme thing I felt used to be that for a menswear journal’s ideal tentpole second, it roughly felt odd at odds to manufacture that as a unlit tie second, [which creates] rather a restrictive costume code… We’re a procedure journal so we modified the costume code, we poured so famous money into social video and photography and we noticed engagement dash by the roof. In the occasion you combine video views, web traffic and social engagement, we were up higher than 300x twelve months on twelve months.

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