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The Business of Content

Oct 1, 2020

Polina Marinova had the kind of media career that many journalists dream of. After a brief stint at a media startup, she landed a job at Fortune Magazine and eventually got the role of head writer for Term Sheet, its daily newsletter on deals and dealmakers. After six years there, her resume and profile probably could have gotten her any mainstream media job she wanted.

But instead, she left that steady job in March -- in the beginning of a massive recession -- to focus on her Substack newsletter full-time. The newsletter is called The Profile, and though she was running it as a side hustle while working at Fortune, she didn’t debut the paid version until after she left.

I recently interviewed Polina about why she decided to make the jump during such uncertain economic times, how she differentiates the free from the paid content, and her strategy for growing the newsletter’s audience these past six months.