I am Pieter Levels, the founder of Nomad List, the biggest crowdsourced city database and digital nomads social network. I also founded Remote OK, the biggest remote jobs board in the world.
After I was quickly going broke in 2014, I started building “12 startups in 12 months” which got a lot of attention and forced me to ship a new app every month.
Most of those apps didn’t become successful, but some did: Nomad List became a real startup with millions of monthly users, multiple acquisition offers, $15,000 to $25,000/month revenue in membership fees, while having a real cultural impact of getting tens of thousands of people to travel and work remotely.
Remote OK started as a basic jobs board for remote workers, and grew out to now be the highest traffic generating remote careers platform with about $10,000 to $20,000/month revenue in job posts.
I am also Product Hunt’s Maker of the Year 2015 and 2017, winner of Product Hunt’s Side Project of the Year 2017, currently the #4 most upvoted Product Hunt maker, got my apps multiple times to #1 on Hacker News and I was on the frontpage of Reddit twice (with Nomad List and Hoodmaps).
I don’t have the keys to success, so I can only tell you what worked for me. A few principles I hold is that I don’t take external funding, I do everything myself, I mostly don’t really hire, I automate a lot which means I have lots of robots working for me 24/7, I like transparency and I hate business bullshit. That means I share my revenue, share the problems I have and the successes when things do work. This presentation is pretty much that!
Pollination Founders Comment on Overcoming Challenges: How to be Successful on the Internet
Jagrit Pratap Singh, Pranav Rastogi and Muhammad Ali are the founders of Pollination, a firm which owns and operates some of the hottest digital properties on the internet. Pollination’s portfolio boasts of websites which continue to rank on front-page in Google Searches, Social Media pages with over 15 Million followers, and e-commerce platforms across two countries.
Jagrit Pratap Singh
In an interview with Disrupt Digital, the founders of Pollination talked about how they started off, where they are – and what’s next for them!
The First Taste of Success
We started out with viral marketing during the digg.com days. This was in the early days of this decade. Our stories were getting popular on that platform and hence, we were making it to the front page of search results on Google almost on a weekly basis. Eventually, it progressed into being multiple times in a week. However, this all stopped when Digg “incinerated their own site to dust”, Jagrit said. He added:
That wasn’t such a big shock on our numbers, yet it was a valuable learning experience. We had viral organic traffic from Facebook and other platforms, and so we scaled that up. And hence began our social media journey.
Scaling it Up with Social Media!
Pranav adds that Pollination owes a huge deal of its success to social media. The trio own and manage Facebook pages which have over 15 Million combined followers! Among Pollination’s portfolio today are pages such as Art Studios, Take Moments and Life of a Rider among others. However, their fondest memories are of a project that gave them some of their biggest highs and lows – Hiptoro.
Hiptoro.com, which quickly reached to 191 USA ranking on Alexa, was a huge success for the trio. The website got most of its traffic from social media – resulting in at least 20m users every day. Everything seemed to be going well for them until Facebook decided to shake things up! After almost a year of consistent results, Facebook decided to make viral sites on their platform humble and made a monumental shift in their content distribution strategies resulting in the traffic dropping by almost 70%.
Muhammad Ali commented on what happened next, saying:
This humbling experience gave us the time to introspect our business strategies and come up with mature business strategies, focusing on the consumer or the end-user. We had always viewed retail e-commerce as an industry we wanted to be in one day, and so began our journey into 1336 USD billion dollars industry.
What’s Next for Pollination: E-Commerce!
Jagrit recalls that the e-Commerce industry was a whole different beast. So far, the trio had operated in social media – but this change in business forced them to learn the ropes of online ad distribution. They tackled this new industry head-on and managed to obtain big results here as well, reaching sales worth $2 Million in just 40 days.
Pranav adds: Multiple failures, delivering sales under time constraints, understanding our customers and regular improvisation, allowed us to reach $2 million dollars in sales within just 40 days on NoahsCave.com through various ad networks. Now, we run 2 e-commerce companies in Dubai and USA, with over 20 employees, and have business expansion plans of developing valuable product brands not only for our own e-commerce companies but also to give the same expertise to our clients who approach us for brand transformation.
Muhammad concluded by stating that innovation is the name of the game. The three will continue innovating and exploring more avenues – ensuring that they remain on top of their game for the years to come!
Interview with Todd Denkin from DigiPath
We recently had the opportunity to talk to Todd Denkin the CEO and Founder of DigiPath. Since joining Digipath, Inc., in 2014 Todd Denkin has transformed the company from a pure digital pathology solution provider into a leader in the medical and recreational cannabis testing market. Digipath Labs’ Las Vegas cannabis testing facility is the number-one testing lab in Nevada, seeing a steady increase in clients and revenues since opening in May of 2015. While maintaining the highest standard for cannabis testing, Todd also focuses on expanding the business through licensing agreements and partnerships that will bring the reliability, experience, and customer service Digipath Labs is known for to cannabis markets across the country. While doing all of that, Todd also co-founded TNMNews Corp. where he serves as it’s president and on-air host.
Denkin’s career has been defined by foresight––the ability to spot and take advantage of emerging market trends and navigate new companies into lucrative markets. In 2009, Todd identified a trend in grow-your-own hydroponic systems and co-founded the self-contained hydroponic system leader Phototron Holdings, helping take the company public and serving as its president. At the time it was one of the very first publicly traded cannabis companies.
He also founded 10 Mile Farms, a hydroponic vegetable growing company dedicated to sprouting locally grown vertical indoor organic produce farms in communities across the country.
Starting in the television and film production business since attending the University of Florida, Denkin became a 25-year show business veteran making TV shows, commercials, infomercials music videos and films. It was another natural fit for Denkin to shift to the Internet in 2000 with a streaming video dot com startup in Las Vegas, NV. He helped take that company public in 2003 and was instrumental in building it to a $300 million market cap.
Glenn Parada & Darwin Roman from Latino Wealth Movement on ParadaWorks
On this episode of ParadaWorks, Glenn Parada sits down to interview Darwin Roman founder of the Latino Wealth Movement to discuss everything from business to leadership. Buckle your seatbelts you are not going to want to miss this episode. Enjoy.
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