Mary Orton, co-founder and President of Trove, and editor at the wildly popular blog, Memorandum, knows all about hustle. No two days are alike for the bustling beauty, who, in August of this year will celebrate the first year anniversary of Trove, the addictive mobile style app that she co-founded with her husband. Bringing together all of your favorite fashion bloggers into one beautiful, shoppable place, Trove allows you to find outfit inspiration, save favorites to a digital closet, and shop everything from the palm of your hand. With a schedule like Mary's it's no wonder she wanted to find a way to bring this content to consumers who, like her, want access to great style inspiration quickly and easily on the go.
So what is her day-to-day like? How about hour-to-hour?
From 6am inbox purges to morning coffee to design and investor meetings, the CEO does more than look the part-- she’s actively involved in every aspect of her business. And yes, she eats at her desk just like the rest of us.
Read through to find out what it’s really like to run a startup and a successful blog at the same time. Be impressed and then, get inspired.
6:00 AM: I violently slap my iPhone alarm into snooze mode and proceed to do this roughly 2-7 additional times over the course of the next 25 minutes. After reluctantly exiting my cozy sheets (muttering obscenities), I army crawl to the kitchen where I throw my Bialetti on the stove. Even the promise of coffee does Pavlovian wonders for my not-a-morning-person-ever self. While the coffee starts, I throw on gym clothes, grab my iPad and head back to the kitchen in the hopes that my coffee is ready and my email inbox is manageable. With coffee in hand and a hard boiled egg (or scrambled eggs if I'm feeling really bold and didn't hit snooze too many times) I start reading the news and triaging my email inbox.
7:00 AM: Depending on the weather and my workout plan for the day, I usually hit the gym or the pavement for a morning sweat sesh. My go-to workouts are barre classes, circuit training or long runs along the water watching the city wake up.
8:15 AM: Back home, I jump in the shower and start the process of making myself look like a presentable human being. As the co-founder of Trove and a style blogger, my go-to weekday looks are typically professional and classic with a trendy, urban edge.
9:00 AM: I make an iced tea in my favorite travel tumbler and with a protein bar hanging halfway out of my mouth, I hit the office! No two days are ever the same, but if I can, I typically try to concentrate meetings in the mornings and computer work and conference calls for the afternoon, so my mornings are usually hectic. On Mondays we always have Trove team meetings where we set objectives for the week and update everyone on different areas of the business. The rest of my mornings are typically spent running all over the city to design meetings, investor meetings, brand meetings and meetings with lots of other folks across the industry. If navigating NYC traffic and subway systems were an Olympic sport, I'm fairly confident I would make the podium.
12:00 PM: If I don't have a lunch meeting, I'll usually grab a salad and eat it at my desk while catching up on emails. I'm addicted to this quinoa and arugula salad at LPQ. It's insane and super healthy, which is good to offset my very unhealthy affinity for cheeseburgers and fries. And burritos. And also Indian food. Oh and CUPCAKES. You don't even know.
2:00 PM: On Tuesdays, I meet with my team that helps manage the business and operations of my blog, Memorandum. We touch base on upcoming posts that I'm planning and solidify plans for photo shoots, video content, and brand collaborations. I've recently started a YouTube channel and have been getting more and more into video--it's wild but so much fun! Since starting my blog three and a half years ago, I've gotten really into photography, but videography is still new to me. It's so much fun to bring my style content to life in this way.
3:30 PM: If I don't have any afternoon meetings, I usually have at least one or two conference calls. At Trove, we work with business partners and bloggers from all over the world, so often spend a couple hours in the afternoon on the phone or Facetime with them. For our business, there's no place like New York--of course, the fashion and technology community here is just incredible--but having so many touchpoints around the globe makes my job really fun and interesting.
7:00 PM: At this point in the day I'm either heading home or heading to drinks and dinner. We live in Tribeca, and are frequenters of Locanda Verde, Tiny's, Weather Up and Distilled. At Distilled, they always serve this crazy good seasoned popcorn at your table, and it's my mission in life to figure out how they make it.
9:00 PM: Once home, I settle into my home office to work on upcoming blog posts. My husband is not only the co-founder of Trove and the CEO of the business, but he also takes all of the photos for Memorandum, which we usually snap either on the way to the office, or in-between meetings during the day. I always keep my DSLR in my bag and we've gotten pretty good at it, so we can capture an outfit in 5-10 minutes when running from one thing to the next. People often comment on the movement captured in our photographs which makes me laugh, because it was borne out of necessity and the reality of my hectic work day, rather than a super conscious artistic choice.
10:00 PM: Once I'm done writing my upcoming posts, I then have to spend an hour or so going through the photos that we took that day and getting them ready. I'm an obsessive reader, but seldom have time to sit and read anymore so I've gotten completely addicted to audiobooks which I always listen to while going through photos in the evenings.
11:30 PM: Once the photos are done and the blog post for the next day is scheduled, I hit the sack! Although if I'm being honest, I'm extremely lucky if this happens as early as 11:30 PM. It's often much deeper into the early morning hours. But, hey, gotta support that coffee industry right? Just trying to do my part over here.
If you're heading to #CreateCultivateNYC be sure to check out Mary on panel, where she'll be sharing her know-how on Content Meets Commerce.