I built my first website around 1999/ 2000. It was a website for and by talented lady comics, for other lady comics. It was successful in traffic, but it made no money. Wait, that’s not totally true. I couldn’t figure out how to get it to make money. That’s closer to the truth.
With hindsight being 20/20, I should’ve turned it into a Splitsider or a Cracked and monetized through google ads and then eventually sponsored stories, the way Buzzfeed does. Or I could’ve tapped into Mediabistro’s original business model and monetized through classifieds. However, I didn’t have that foresight then. I do now, though.
Using that knowledge, I’ve monetized big sites for big brands.
Something keeps me hesitant on building out further sites.
It’s the fact that I think websites are dying. They’re being replaced by something else. Something more vibrant, more organic. Something that will appear obvious to everyone immediately after it’s too late to capitalize on it.
You see, websites used to be the hub. Everything else (social) was used to push to the hub. It’s the Buzzfeed/ Upworthy funnel of yore. The strategy used to be: use social to create this huge funnel and drive it to your hub (website) that you can then monetize.
NOW SOCIAL IS THE HUB.
Pick a platform, make that your hub, your meeting place and everything else will get monetized off of it like branches bearing fruit on a tree. You can’t get the fruit without the tree trunk. The tree trunk is the platform.
This shift is why you’re seeing so many different personas coined, “The King of Vine,” “The Queen of Periscope,” “The Next Snapchat Star,” “Hottest Instagram Star,” etc. It’s about one platform. You lead on one platform. That’s the hub and everything else feeds off of it like a momma pig nursing dozens of babies.
A lot of top creators will be making a jump from Youtube to Facebook. I think new stars will come up on Facebook and Periscope and Snapchat and everywhere else. I think you’ll follow them where YOU are. You will follow them where YOU like to be. Your platform of choice, let’s call it and from there, they will drive you to the places they hope to monetize.
Today, that’s what I think.
I like to think about the internet. I also like to hear other peoples’ thoughts about the internet. So, leave yours in the comments section below and…