Meet Jason Trout the Co-Founder of GoodBlogs, this company licenses out a traffic generation and conversion optimization platform.
Jason Trout is the Co-Founder of GoodBlogs, this company licenses out a traffic generation and conversion optimization platform. Jason and Goodblogs have been featured on Techcrunch, and today he shares the startup story behind this new platform.
Q: Tell us a little bit about your background and the start-up story behind GoodBlogs?
I started an Internet business while in college and decided to pursue that after graduation rather than getting a “real job”. My mother was terribly disappointed 🙂 The idea for GoodBlogs came to me several years ago, and since it seemed to fill a pretty big void in the marketplace, I decided to pursue it.
Q: What are some of the projects you are working on right now?
GoodBlogs is definitely my main focus right now. I used to launch side-projects fairly regularly but, given the potential that GoodBlogs is showing, I have stopped doing that in order to focus in on GoodBlogs.
Q: Do you or have you owned any other businesses in the past, if so what happen to them?
I’ve had a string of web businesses, mostly just little side projects rather than what you would call a stand alone business.
Q: Share a few tips and advice for first time entrepreneurs.
Start it. If you want to be an entrepreneur, you have to start. It’s okay to be in the “talk about it” stage for a while, but I would say no more than a year. Start it. It may not be perfect. It may not look anything like what your end goal is, but you *have* to get going on something if you want to be an entrepreneur.
Q: What is one thing you know now you wish you knew before starting GoodBlogs?
Mostly what’s contained within “The Lean Startup“. Had I read that before we launched, things would have been much smoother (I think).
Q: Why is it important for business owners to use blogging as part of their marketing strategy?
The vast, vast majority of all web traffic comes from either search engines or social media sites. And what drives those? Content. And blogging gives you content. Plus, by blogging, you can provide something of value to your target market. Don’t just try and sell them, give them something valuable instead.
Q: Starting out what the worst mistake you made with your company, and what did you recover from it?
I would say aiming to high, starting too big. We started big before we really understood how our business was going to grow. We should have started smaller, gained that understanding and *then* gone big.
Let me give you an example. Our first GoodBlog site (this was before we started licensing out the software) paid $20 per post promoted to the homepage, and promoted 10 posts a day. That’s a lot of cash to burn through. Our second GoodBlogs site (after our first pivot but still before we started licensing out the software) promoted two posts a day at $10 per post. So it was 1/10th the cost to run. The crazy part? That site is far more successful than the original site was. For 1/10th the cost.
Q: What is one thing that you on a daily basis to grow as an entrepreneur?
I learn about and try new things. A lot of them fail but even if they do, I’ve learned something by trying. Also, trying new things keep life interesting.
Q: How is running a tech company different than what you thought it would be?
It’s a lot more fun than I would have thought possible. Most of that is getting out and meeting other tech entrepreneurs. It’s also a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. Go figure.
Q: What was the best entrepreneurial advice you have ever been given and by whom?
You know, I actually don’t have any idea. I’ve gotten or read thousands of pieces of good advice though. I think the key is being willing to act on good advice when you get it.
Q: What 3 advice would you give to anyone looking to start a tech company?
1) – Start small and pivot as necessary (as part of this, read “The Lean Startup“ *before* starting a start-up :-).
2) – Don’t quit your day job. I relied on the income from my “day business” as we grew GoodBlogs. Without it, I would have been in trouble.
3) – Get out and meet other people running tech start-ups. Over beer if possible.
Q: What is your definition of success?
About ten years ago I heard someone (I can’t remember who) define success for an entrepreneur as being able to show up to the office, announce that you’ll be out for the next six months starting tomorrow, and have your business thrive while you’re away. That sounds about right to me. No where near that yet with GoodBlogs, but it’s an end goal.
Q: What is your favorite success quote?
Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm. – Winston Churchill
Q: How can our community get in touch with you?
Shoot me an e-mail: Jason@GoodBlogs.com