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Episode 2. The Making of Owners Illustrated Magazine

A fascinating conversation among friends and family on the struggles and triumphs of founding Owners Illustrated Magazine. The story starts off with a strategy to direct market at urban events like NBA All Star weekend in Atlanta in 2003, to other events like the Kentucky Derby, Miami for Memorial weekend, culminating with participating on the Roc The Mic Tour with 50 cent and Jay-Z. The tale covers the many innovative techniques from crowd funding before there was a Kickstarter by having pre-sales from events and rewards in terms of fashion merchandise and music related items. Other innovative techniques involve the approach to building viral awareness of the publication by creating a reading space around the Ford Expedition owned by founder Damola Idowu. A mock issue of the publication was presented to potential reader along with a folding table and chairs. There was a vinyl wrap on the Expedition that was provocative in nature which garnered attention and would wind up making 1,000,000 impressions on concert goers and other people in the cities of the tour. Bryan ” Fashion Williams” speaks on his career in fashion and how he came in contact with the Owners Illustrated Magazine team. Dawoud Shahidu would discuss his efforts to support his brother founder Damola Idowu and navigate several difficult urban environments to build awareness for the nascent magazine brand. The discussion covers the several celebrities featured in the inaugural issue from; 50 cent, Jay-Z, The Clipse, Lil Jon, Ludacris, Funk Master Flex, Busta Rhymes, Maino, and many others. Wole Idowu the son of founder Damola and CTO of their Tech startup on the Campus of Carnegie Mellon University lends a millennial’s perspective to the conversation. Other publications will eventually be launched including: Hustlenomics, The Womens Issue, and Toyz Magazines. Here is a video trailer that captures some of these moments.