If you’re a woman working in fashion, you must’ve heard of Refinery29 before.
When the digital media and entertainment company Refinery29 was founded in 2005, the initial idea was to create a digital space that highlighted unique fashion discoveries in New York City. Quickly, Refinery29 evolved into a revolutionary platform, allowing young women to spark conversations that matter most. The mission is to be a catalyst for women to feel, see and claim their power and with that in mind, the media house became one of the most popular ‘go-to’ platforms for next-generation females. With a global audience of over 550 million, Refinery29 isn’t only talking about pretty topics like fashion and beauty but tackles subjects that contribute to female empowerment and that leave room for discussion and free-flowing thoughts.
For this podcast we were able to meet up with Cloudy Zakrocki, Content & Creative Director at Refinery29 Germany, which was launched as the company’s first non-English office in 2016. Since then, Cloudy has been responsible for bringing Refinery29’s magic to Germany, mixing native content and translated English articles, while engaging young women in a new way of storytelling.
Cloudy Zakrocki of Refinery29 Germany, cool girl and digital storyteller
If it weren’t for an internship in Australia, you may have found Cloudy teaching at a school now. It was there that the feisty young professional got into fashion writing and decided to continue this path back in Germany. After joining the fashion blog LesMads, which was at the time owned by a German publishing house, Cloudy traveled the world and worked her way up in the media industry. From consulting other media and fashion brands to becoming the Executive Online Editor at the German Interview Magazine, Cloudy’s extensive experience and belief in Refinery29’s mission eventually made her the ideal candidate to help launch the company’s first German office.
Cloudy is a hustler who is always working hard and knows what she stands for. Knowing that it’s sometimes hard for young women to get respected in a hoard of ‘grey-suits’ – she does not find herself intimidated, but rather gives them food for thought on female leadership in the industry. Cloudy is always on the hunt for the latest digital trends, not only to understand Refinery29 Germany’s audience but also because she’s a strong believer in social media. The possibility of engaging in conversations with people you might never meet in real life, and receiving feedback from readers and followers, is what Cloudy valued during her time as a blogger. With that being said, Cloudy doesn’t see herself as Chancellor of Germany in the future but wants to have more open eye-to-eye conversations with women to encourage and inspire them to live their lives the way they want to.
Listen below to discover how Cloudy witnessed and contributed to the evolution of digital storytelling, and how her work at Refinery29 Germany is giving young females grounds to voice their thoughts.
Female empowerment is still an important topic in our industry, with gender diversity being far from balanced. Tune in to our previous podcast with David Noël, Co-founder of Rolemodels, in which he shares with us how he is giving women in Germany space to voice their thoughts, inspire and be inspired.