This week’s featured media mogul in the making is the founder and editor-in-chief of Black Boy Bulletin, K.B. Denis. Learn more about K.B.’s journey below.
You are a multi-talented individual dipping and dapping in a bunch of other expressive fields. So, what was it about journalism or media that piqued your interest?
“In high school, I was writing for the school newspaper and literary journal. I ended up serving as Editor-in-Chief of the latter and Media & Culture Editor of the former. Writing has always been one of my first loves, so I think it was kind of obvious that I would pivot to journalism and media. I’m constantly amazed at how the media can shift conversations and control narratives and minds. Whether it’s pop culture critique, film analysis, or politics, I’m all over it. While I can always express myself emotionally through poetry, singing, and acting, journalism gives me away to express my thoughts and feelings analytically. It forces me to compartmentalize and really dig into why certain things are important or why certain things provoke the reactions that they do.”
How did you get your start in the media field? Did you study communications in college? Internships? Hobby writing?
“I’ve been writing since I was a kid. Whenever there was an opportunity to write for a media outlet, I took it. Middle school newspaper, High School Newspaper and Literary Journal, and now my own site!”
Tell us how you built up your platform. What’s your mission/goals? Who’s your audience?
“I launched Black Boy Bulletin in the summer of 2017. A friend’s mom gave me the idea to start my own platform after reading a piece I wrote about Beyoncé’s Lemonade in my school newspaper. My intent was always to create a platform focused on reviewing and analyzing media from my perspective as a young Black man. I always want my Blackness to permeate through my writing. Blackness is not a monolith and my specific Black experience greatly impacts how I interact with different global events and works of art. Another one of the goals with my site was to highlight up-and-coming artists of color. Through New Artist Spotlight, I’ve been able to give a platform to a slew of rising rappers, R&B maestros, and pop stars. My audience is basically anyone who is interested in what I have to say. To be more specific, my target audience is internet stans. I gained a sizable platform on Twitter from them by covering the artists that they care about and delving into the depth of pop music in a way that is fresh and exciting.”
So far throughout your career, what has been your proudest personal media moment?
“I think I have a few proud moments. One of them is when I started getting sent press releases from record labels. It really shook me up because it meant that people were really paying attention to the work that I was doing and valued my platform! This year, I put out an article titled, ‘This Is Why ‘Saving Pop Music’ Is An Anti-Black Sentiment’. The piece went viral on Twitter and a bunch of editors and staffers from my favorite media news outlets reached out to me praise my work. Finally, I got to launch a column with AwardsWatch, an entertainment site that I had been following for years. That was a surreal moment for me!”
What advice would you give aspiring mediapreneurs looking to enter the field?
“Don’t get discouraged by engagement numbers. You likely won’t be an overnight success, but if you consistently put out quality content and build a relationship with your readers, you’re set. Sometimes I’ll put out a piece or an album review that gets 4 total views and the next day I’ll put out something that goes viral and makes my site crash for a bit. Ultimately, none of it matters because I’m staying true to what I want to write and that is more powerful than any number.”
Connect with K.B. Denis on Instagram to keep up with him. Follow Black Boy Bulletin on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. To view the latest posts on Black Boy Bulletin, visit https://blackboybulletin.com/.
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