Canım Istanbul newsletter brings love of city to your door
ISTANBULWho said newsletters were a thing of the past? Many are, but a unique one in Istanbul has certainly bucked the trend. Canım Istanbul is a free, beautifully illustrated and refreshingly short newsletter (you can read it in less than a minute) that is sent to your mailbox twice a week and lets you in on everything up-and-coming in Istanbul.
A manicure service that comes to your office, a health-food restaurant with a yoga studio above it, a new carpooling app, a young jewelry designer, a new bookstore/café, an escape game or suggestions for a day-trip to Heybeliada… everything that makes Istanbul the best place to live is in Canım Istanbul. Is your Turkish a bit rusty? Canım Istanbul publishes its newsletter both in English and Turkish.
“I created Canım Istanbul to be a newsletter that locals can not only trust, but would also be delighted every time they see one in their Inbox, because they’ll know it’s always going to be something exciting and new,” Joseph Donyo, Canım Istanbul’s founder, recently said.
Donyo is a Turkish-French entrepreneur who grew up in Paris, spent his teenage summers with his family in İzmir, studied in Boston, and worked in e-marketing in the early days of the Internet. For the last 10 years, he has been living between Paris and Istanbul while running his family’s textile business. As he fell more and more in love with the city, its people and its energy, he decided to make a bold move: quit the family business and launch a digital project. His experience and love for fun-seeking and urban exploration all came together in 2014.
“When I lived in Istanbul, I was amazed and inspired by everything the city had to offer. While most of my friends were always going to the same places, I was always seeking the genuine and unique ones. So I decided to create a newsletter for Istanbulites that people will actually look forward to reading, because not only will the content be good but also the format will be short and it will look pretty. Some people have told me newsletters were out of fashion in this new social media world, but I still think they can be relevant, when done properly. Canım Istanbul is where I share my love of Istanbul,” he said.
Written in a concise, compelling and fun tone, each newsletter comes with a custom made illustration with “the Canım girl,” a cute local who discovers what Canım reveals that day.
Created especially for women (although 20 percent of its readers are men), the topics vary between food, fashion and beauty, nightlife, health and fitness and arts and culture. But nothing is off-limits as long as it fits in Canım’s “We want to delight our readers” promise.
Surprisingly, there is no way to read the old newsletters on the web. “I am working on the next version where you can find all our discoveries on our website, even though I actually like the idea of a members-only club, of a little community you have to be a part of to get the info,” Donyo said.
Full of ideas to shake up the old newsletter concept, Canım Istanbul recently partnered with music blogger Cizenbayan to offer a monthly “Canım Concerts” edition, with live music recommendations and a matching SoundCloud playlist, where readers can listen to the concert picks and decide for themselves which shows to go to.
Also in the works are videos and short interviews with influential and inspiring people who will share their city tips with Canım Istanbul’s readers.
To sign up to the newsletter, visit canımistanbul.com.