This wonderful presentation from 37 Signals on focusing on a REAL business model inspired me to write this post on making an UNREAL business model.
If you’ve heard me talk at any conference, you’ll frequently hear me talk about how valuable our users are to us. Any publisher will tell you how much they need their users, but in our case, it’s even more so. Thanks to our users, we have virtually no costs on content production and no marketing costs. For a publisher, that’s a dream come true.
Look at it this way: If we were General Motors, it’d be like getting all the raw materials for free, getting your customers to assemble the cars for free and getting them to convince their friends to buy the cars. Unreal. No bail out needed.
It should come as no surprise to anyone that we turn a profit. But it does. To practically everyone. To be fair, it’s not glamorous earning crappy CPMs in this busted economy, but a lean business is a real business.
I’m not writing this to brag*. I want to share that you don’t have to think like everyone else to make money. In fact, thinking unlike everyone else will help you see opportunities where others see none.
(* ok, maybe just a teeny bit)