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TheSkimm and Brit + Co founders say they don’t need Facebook to thrive

You don’t need Facebook when you have email and Pinterest.

Brit Morin, Carly Zakin, Danielle Weisberg
Left to right: Brit Morin of Brit + Co; Carly Zakin and Danielle Weisberg of TheSkimm
Asa Mathat

Danielle Weisberg, Carly Zakin and Brit Morin run small, targeted digital media organizations at a time of media consolidation and concentrated power.

And they say that they’ve been able to thrive online independent of how they are treated on Facebook.

“Brit + Co has a very diversified traffic pie,” Morin said, calling out its audience on Pinterest, where readers might enjoy a before-and-after photograph of a remodeled kitchen but not a heated conversation about politics. “We aren’t reliant on Facebook — however, we play there, for sure. We try to find the pockets of communities that do love the things that we have to offer them.”

The founders of theSkimm and Brit + Co. were speaking Monday at the Code Media conference hosted in Southern California.

Morin started her millennial lifestyle company at age 25, and she now reaches more than 170 million people a month.

TheSkimm, meanwhile, focuses on email. Its daily subscription newsletter reaches six million subscribers, and the former NBC News workers are now eager to build different products. Originally just a newsletter business targeting a young female audience, theSkimm recently rolled out a paid calendar app.

“We are in a position now — when they do need to change an algorithm or change direction in some way — we don’t have to have an executive meeting to figure out how do we change our business,” said Zakin, arguing that theSkimm’s key is its connection with the niche audience.

“We don’t want to be the biggest player out there, because we don’t need to be,” added Weisberg. “For us, it’s about trust.”

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