Architectural Digest’s Newest Digital Site Is Starting a Unique Ecommerce Relationship

Clever wants to become more than content

Clever, which was first released in October 2017, decided to work with Modsy because of the brands' overlapping missions. Courtesy of Clever and Modsy
Headshot of Ann-Marie Alcántara

These days, publishers don’t just want people to read their content—they want them to shop on their sites, too.

And Clever, the eight-month-old digital website from Architectural Digest, also wants to style readers’ homes.

A new partnership with Modsy, a home design company that uses 3D technology, allows Clever readers to take a quiz to determine their preferred style and take photos and measurements of the room they want to redecorate. Then, they can see (and shop) two 3D designs of the room, with “editor-approved furniture.”

“We’re looking for … fun brand extensions that can bring this new brand to life with our users,” said Eric Gillin, digital general manager of Architectural Digest, Condé Nast Traveler and the food innovation group. He added that the publisher’s top objective is to “surprise and delight our reader base and really help Clever go from just being a content vertical to being a three-dimensional brand with big aspirations.”

Clever readers can choose from two different packages: a $69-per-room deal with two 3D rendered designs and a $199-per-room offering that includes the two designs, as well as an opportunity to work with a “Modsy style advisor” and get even more personalized tips and recommendations.

“We want to give the user that choice,” Gillin said. “Some people are really DIY.”

The two designs consumers receive will include furniture from retailers such as CB2 and Anthropolgie.

“Clever is the first partnership [where] we’ve done an editorial take on our collection and we’ve worked with their team to curate collections that really appeal to the Clever audience,” said Shanna Tellerman, Modsy CEO and founder.

That audience is the millennial generation, which is “really in their prime of going through these life changes and beginning to really invest in their spaces,” added Tellerman.

Clever, which was first released in October 2017, decided to work with Modsy because of the brands’ overlapping missions.

“Modsy … really does match how Clever tries to solve problems,” Gillin said. “It has that DIY sort of aesthetic to it, and it’s very empowering for the user in the same way that Clever is empowering for the user.”

For Modsy, it was tapping into a similar audience and creating a curated collection for consumers. Tellerman said its design is “geared towards this new [Clever] audience rather than their parents or extension company Architectural Digest.”

Clever readers can check out the experience starting May 8 and can expect more information about the partnership in future emails and social media posts.

@itstheannmarie Ann-Marie Alcántara is a tech reporter for Adweek, focusing on direct-to-consumer brands and ecommerce.