Grooveeffect was a profitable urban/indie culture media site dedicated to curating the best in emerging style, music, and trends. Originally launched in late 2004 as a small web store, it was re-launched in late 2005 as a content site to capitalize on the explosion of blogs and independent media, and quickly grew to be one of the leading sites in its niche. As co-founder, I was responsible for all site technical development from back-end to front-end to ad-server, as well as biz ops and content management.

Over the years Grooveeffect developed into a thriving small business with the majority of its revenue generated via advertising and site sponsorships. We’ve worked with several major ad networks, as well as directly with youth brands such as Scion and a number of independent fashion labels and music publicists. The site was marketed primarily via word of mouth (everything from grassroots spread to the occasional “viral” post), event sponsorships, advertising, and SEO, having been architected from the ground up to perform well in Google and other search engines.

We’ve had over a dozen staff writers contribute to the site, as well as outside contractors such as Six, a UK branding and identity firm which produced an award winning rebrand in 2008, landing the site in numerous design showcases and galleries online and off. Beyond staff, we managed relationships with dozens of brands, publicists, PR agencies, musicians, and promoters.

We’ve reached millions of readers over the years, interviewed major names like Skrillex, B.o.B., and Porter Robinson, as well as covered some of the biggest events and acts nationwide, such as New York Fashion Week, SXSW, Coachella, EDC, HARD, and Treasure Island Music Fest.

In addition to management, I personally contributed a large percentage of the content on the site, including many of our most successful posts. Content responsibilities included authoring posts, producing photography and video, and ensuring an aesthetically pleasing post layout.

Aside from the business itself I managed all technological aspects of the site – everything from the HTML/CSS/JS/PHP frontend, the content managed backend, LAMP server admin, and SEO features. To be friendly to our writers, the content management system has been engineered to allow even novices to dynamically manage additional features such as the image carousel, page color schemes, and lightbox photo/video popups.

All good things must come to an end though, and as my personal interest in the niche has began to fade I decided it was better to retire it gracefully, and the site was unofficially closed in 2011. The site served as a central focus of my life for several years, giving me deep exposure to all aspects of the online media, editorial, and independent journalism worlds. It’s been great fun but I look forward to making room for something bigger and better in the future.

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