Martha Stewart may be seen as a queen of domesticity, but she is equally adept at reinvention. Her company Friday announced it is forging a “new digital path” that will see an end to her “Martha Stewart Living” print magazine and put a new focus on producing digital content, including a podcast via iHeartRadio, videos on TikTok and Instagram, and a refreshed ecommerce effort.
"It's always been my philosophy that when you're through changing, you're through," said Stewart. “I look forward to bringing more inspiration, more ideas and more how-to information to an even larger devoted following,” she said in a statement. Stewart also acknowledged the moves are in response to how consumers continue to search digital platforms for information with the "teach, make, buy" principles driving her lifestyle brand.
Marquee Brands acquired Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia in 2019, and CEO Neil Fiske said Stewart will bring her “unmatched authority, unstoppable energy, and creativity” into “more modern” digital formats. “The media landscape is evolving so quickly, and Martha has always been at the forefront of innovation and change,” said Fiske. “No doubt, she will blaze a new trail for others to follow, as she's done many times before."
Stewart says a common thread through her career as a model, stockbroker, and doyenne of all things domestic has been her role as a teacher. On the new podcast she is developing with iHeartRadio, Stewart will look to people she has worked with through the years for advice and lessons learned that she can share with listeners.
“We have identified more than three thousand people who have worked for Martha Stewart over the years,” explained Stewart during a presentation for the ad community last year. “So many have done amazing things and so we are going to be investigating what they did at Martha, what they did before Martha, what they have done after Martha, and even some of them what they are still doing at Martha, because we have some real great talent at Martha and they all deserve to talk about their amazing careers, their self-development, and learning processes in order to get ahead in an entrepreneurial world. That’s what it is all about.”
Podcasting will also help Stewart appeal to a new, younger demographic. That is something she has been focused on in recent years from appearing on Comedy Central’s Justin Bieber Roast to producing “Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party” for VH1 with Snoop Dog. “I have that sixth sense about what you do next and to try something new every day,” said Stewart. “That is a motto of mine: learn something new every day.”
Stewart said she is a podcast listener herself, choosing mostly to listen to them while in the car on her commute from her home in Connecticut to her office in New York. “What an amazing medium for a captive person,” she said. “I like to always be hearing and learning something.”
Stewart said the pandemic has had some positives for her, including dropping 20 pounds as the result of cooking at home and new hobbies like knitting.