As The Knot gets ready to launch in China, the co-founders, married couple Carley Roney and David Liu, talk about how the media company got started, how they keep going and what’s ahead, in the New York Enterprise Report’s June 2010 issue.
The publicly traded Soho-based company includes wedding website TheKnot.com, a print magazine, WeddingChannel.com, GiftRegistry360.com, the Nest and the Bump brands, and four iPhone applications. The company employs 500 people and saw revenues of $106.4 million in 2009.
Roney, the editor in chief, and Liu, the chairman and CEO, along with two partners, founded The Knot in 1996 as an Internet start-up using $1.7 million in seed money from America Online. They hoped to bring something new to the wedding publishing industry.
“We realized this industry could use a makeover and we were the people to do it,” Roney said. In her bio on the company website, Roney said the goal was to “enhance the wedding planning process with the convenience of emerging Internet technology.”
The Knot was the first company on AOL to have online advertising, Roney said in the New York Enterprise Report. And that first advertiser was fashion designer Nicole Miller.
With brides as their audience, The Knot is challenged with trying “to attract a new audience every year,” Rooney said.
But this is not a curse, she added, because they have a legitimate reason to tell advertisers that they really need to advertise ever year.