Jermaine Hall Brings Latest Website to Another Level

Jermaine Hall Brings Latest Website to Another Level

Several weeks ago, LEVEL, previously located on Medium, launched its own website, The website speaks to Black men age 30 and older, offering commentary on race, politics, culture, relationships, and self (finance, wellness, career, identity, and aging).

The man who brought to life is industry veteran Jermaine Hall, who recently connected with BLACK ENTERPRISE to talk about the recent move from Medium to stand alone on its own. With stints working with BET, VIBE, The Source, KING, and RIDES magazines, Hall’s experience with brands that cater to a Black audience prepared him for LEVEL. Hall talks about how the site started, what led him to pitch the website to Medium, and shares his views on web3.

What spurred, and how would you describe the purpose of the new website?

This is actually a relaunch. I started the brand in 2019 on Medium after pitching it to Siobhan O’Connor, who instantly saw why the brand needed to exist. Building a space for Black men to have conversations about race and identity and how they affect our daily lives was important. Making Black men smarter as it relates to finance, health and wellness, and sex and relationships is necessary. Giving you a more nuanced take on celebrities is refreshing. All that said, when I think of our purpose, it’s really making Black men smarter tomorrow than they are today. I want to build a community for this group through the dot com, social, and amazing experiential experiences.

You’ve been in the industry for several years; how has your experience prepared you for this?

I’ve approached every position I’ve had from a rounded cultural perspective. For me, it’s about figuring out how to feed an audience with information they didn’t know they needed after they’ve come to a platform for a specific thing. I’m more fascinated with human interest and service and gravitated to that content. But it’s always been additive to the brands I’ve spearheaded. With LEVEL, it’s not additive. It’s primary. 

How has the changing atmosphere and technology throughout the world kept you focused? How do you approach how you work and what you do in this environment?

It made us look far beyond 2.0. It forced the team to figure out how we intended to show up on social, experiential, and web3. The audience we’re speaking to is powerful and doesn’t have outlets to be vulnerable. So the question that needed answers is how are we going to build a community for them outside of the dot com. What is the fully-formed community for Black men that LEVEL is building, and why will the consumer care? It was a necessary exercise that resulted in a roadmap that I feel builds a very viable, mission-driven business.

What advice would you give someone who wants to turn a passion into a career?

Make peace with it being scary and do it anyway. It’s really that simple. That thing that you’re passionate about will never feel like a gig.

You’ve seen many trends throughout your years in the industry. What do you anticipate or even hope will be a trend in the future?

Web3 feels like a tremendous shift is upon us — sort of like what happened in 2000. The way we engage with content is going to change. I spoke to a kid the other day — a 24-year-old — who was telling me about the club he went to the previous night. He was raving about the time he had, but it was in the metaverse! That was fascinating. It makes me think about the out-of-box opportunities we have to build community at LEVEL. It gives me a clearer vision of what a subscription offering could look like for the brand because the experiences we can create are beyond what we’ve been able to do. 

One of the reasons we chose to work with Create Labs as our development partners was their experience and passion for web3. They’re so far ahead of what’s happening, which bleeds into how we think of making LEVEL relevant and successful five years from now.