In Episode #301 Nathan interviews Alex Skatell. Alex jumped into the incredible competitive online media space and founded the Independent Journal Review. Today it’s one of the top 50 websites in the country, with over 20 million unique views a day. Listen in to hear Alex and Nathan break down the future of online publishing, making money through news, and why you shouldn’t be afraid to go up against giants.
- Favorite Book? – David and Goliath
- What CEO do you follow? — Fred Smith
- Favourite online tool? — Asana
- Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— No
- If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be?—Go with your gut
Time Stamped Show Notes:
- 01:32 – Nathan’s introduction
- 02:11 – Welcoming Alex to the show
- 02:25 – Why go into online publishing?
- 02:50 – Alex wanted to create a platform for self-published news in college
- 03:30 – “People aren’t looking at the front page of the paper to find what’s news”
- 03:50 – News is becoming more feed-driven: Alex’s company puts out content every 4 minutes
- 04:20 – 700k people on the email list
- 05:10 – “How can you reach people online, on your own terms?”
- 05:35 – Independent Journal Review was launched in 2012
- 06:08 – The company was initially bootstrapped, and has since raised around $2.5 million from friends and family
- 06:31 – 20-25 million unique views per day
- 07:20 – Around 50 people working in the newsroom
- 08:00 – There’s a technology company and a news company under Alex’s Media Group of America brand
- 09:00 – Alex believes in publically available tools like WordPress and Google Analytics
- 10:00 – Total expenses each month are around six figures
- 10:30 – Largely makes money through advertising
- 14:00 – Nathan: Would you scale your technology into a SaaS platform?
- 14:30 – Alex: No, that’s not our focus
- 14:18 – Connect with Alex on Twitter and via email
- 17:30 – The Famous Five
3 Key Points:
- Don’t be afraid to go up against the big guys. Start-ups can be flexible and take risks, even in spaces full of giants.
- Go with your gut. Listen to your instincts.
- The way that people consume and publish news is fundamentally changing – it’s becoming more personalised, more immediate, and more feed-driven.
- Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
- Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
- Leadpages – The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
- Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5 hour drive) to listen to audio books.
- Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives