May was a great month. I published lots of interviews, one of which went viral on HN. A lot of people arrived at the website and subscribed to Failory newsletter. Our social networks kept growing. And I was able to sell an advertisement on the homepage, which meant $300. Go on to read about May marketing strategies, numbers and revenue.
I am Rich Clominson, the guy behind Failory. From now on, I will be in charge of Failory almost on my own. There won't be any change in the number of interviews published every week, or in the number of side-projects launched, so it will be the same for you. However, you will start reading articles written in the first person instead of third one ;)
May went particularly well. Not only in terms of traffic and email subscribers, but also in revenue. It was the month with the biggest earnings, which is the result of the sale of an advertisement on the homepage. Failory's SERPs kept increasing, the social networks grew a lot and the newsletter beat the 4,500 subscribers goal.
Now, let's move into this month marketing strategies, numbers, and revenue & expenses report.
One more time, all of my marketing efforts consisted of content promotion, social media, and SEO. Well, in fact, I didn't put a lot of focus on marketing as I was really occupied with a really great project I am launching really soon called Startup Cemetery, in which I analyze the failure of +100 big companies. However, these three channels were the ones that drove the highest amount of traffic to the website in May.
Publishing and promoting Failory's interviews was the #1 strategy in terms of traffic driven. Only 3 interviews meant 27,689 page views, which represented the 34.99% of the total amount of page views on May. So, which were these three interviews and why did they do it that well? Let's analyze them.
One of these three interviews is called “Growing a Time Tracking Software to $316,000/Month”, in which I interviewed Dave Nevogt, a 38 years old entrepreneur who built Hubstaff. It is a really insightful and long interview (3,308 words) which fits developers' interests and freelancers' attraction.
I published the interview and, as usual, I started promoting it. I submitted it to Hacker News, Reddit, Twitter, Facebook, and a few other communities, without big expectations of reaching thousands of people. However, when I refreshed my Google Analytics I found out +50 people were on the website reading the post. This occurred because the interview was upvoted many times on HN and reached the front-page. This also led to a controversial debate on HN comments between developers who had different opinions towards the product that Hubstaff sold.
In May, 10,980 people entered the interview only from Hacker News, and 8,243 did it from other sources. The only negative impact of getting featured on HN frontpage was that the average time on the interview remained really low (01:22), although the estimate read time for that interview is 15 minutes.
The second trending interview is called “WURA: Burning $250,000 Building the Nollywood Netflix” and it is about a guy who invested $250,000 in creating and marketing an on-demand video platform for African and Nollywood movies, which obviously ended up failing. I submitted it to Reddit and it did it pretty well on the Entrepreneur subreddit, as well as on the EntrepreneurRideAlong one. These two channels led to a big part of the page views the interview received. Moreover, a big part of the page views come from organic search, which is really weird, as WURA wasn't such a recognized company.
And finally, the third interview that got a big amount of traffic was with the James, the founder of Bediwin Information Services, a failed startup in the IT industry. One more time, this interview got many upvotes on Reddit and attracted a lot of people on different subreddits.
7,042 users (34.26% of the total users on May) arrived at the website from social networks. These were the networks that meant the biggest amount of traffic:
I have already talked about Hacker News and Reddit, so let's move to the next ones. Regarding Facebook, there isn't much to say. Every time I published a new interview, I shared it on Failory FB Page and on different FB communities/groups about entrepreneurship. The same with StumbleUpon. I just submitted the link to new interviews and let them get some organic votes.
As for Twitter, you can see that 233 users arrived at the website from this network. This is quite surprising because last month I stopped tweeting that much. However, the number of people coming to the website from Twitter grew by 97.46%.
An amazing month in respect of the SEO optimization of the website. 5,010 users entered to the website from Google searches, which is 114.77% more than in April (a lot!). Check out the following chart comparing both months:
The pages that received the biggest amount of traffic from SEO are the same as the ones in April. However, they got a lot more people to click on them in May.
But, what are the keywords that attract so many people to these pages? The following ones:
There is still a lot of work to do to improve the search engine optimization of the page, but I can definitely say that I am going on the right path :)
Let's have a detailed look at May numbers and analytics.
20,549 users entered Failory in April, in 26,148 different sessions. In these sessions, they saw 79,125 pages, which is an average of 3.03 pages per session (not bad!).
The acquisition of users was in first place on social channels, secondly, on direct sources, and thirdly, with organic search. And the users who arrive at the site directly were the ones that mostly subscribed to our newsletter or downloaded our free eBook.
Lastly, two pages were responsible for the 50% of the total page views. These were the 10 pages that got the biggest amount of page views:
Failory ended up April with 4,238 email subscribers. I now have 4,690. This means that I got 452 new email subscribers in May. The growth rate was 10.67% and I got 14.58 new email subscribers every day.
I am considering doing a cleaning of the newsletter and deleting maybe a thousand of subscribers that don't open Failory emails.
Twitter went okay. Although it was the month with the biggest amount of people arriving at Failory from Twitter, I didn't manage to get a lot of new followers.
However, Failory received a few important mentions from TuitStars ;) that meant more people to know our website. For example, the following one:
Failory has been making some money during the last few months with sponsorships on the newsletter. In May, however, I couldn't find any business to sponsor the emails, so the newsletter didn't make a single penny.
Anyway, I got contacted by D3FY team, a startup that provides design & web development services to businesses, asking me about the price and requisites for advertising Failory homepage. After a few emails, they paid $300 and I published their banner on the homepage, which is still there and doing it really well.
Regarding expenses, I only had to pay $20 for the Hosting on Webflow. I know this is quite expensive, but it is the only way to have the CMS solutions that Webflow provides.
What about profit? PayPal charged me 10$ for fees on the advertisement payment, so I earned $290. Subtracting the Webflow Hosting Plan, the real profit was $270.
In April I thought May would be a much more difficult month than it ended up being. I was able to publish two interviews every week, and it was the month with the highest earnings. Anyway, I am sure that if I had set some goals, I would have completed them.
In June I will be traveling to Europe, so I won't work on Failory for 2 - 3 weeks. Traffic will decrease, newsletter growth will be really small and twitter followers will probably remain the same. So I prefer not to set me up any goal.
I want to thank everyone for the support I received this month and for being part of this great community we are all building. See you in June!
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