Tech startups are 2017’s gold rush. Everyone is running to them with dollar signs in their eyes and many are walking away disappointed. Isn’t ironic that the tech boom is happening in California? The many who flood into Silicon Valley aren’t necessarily failing because they are underfunded or have bad ideas, though that may contribute, they are failing because they don’t know why they are trying in the first place.
I’ve been reading Simon Sinek’s Start With Why, if you’re not into reading then I highly encourage you watch his TED talk here, it’s not that long.
It got me thinking though, ‘why Blog Trackr?’
I first came up with the concept walking to the grocery store and had no idea what I was getting into given this is my first tech startup, a year later why still go? Where are we going? And what do I want to get out of it? These are all valid questions and ones that sent me on a journey of sorts. While the journey did not require an epic that spanned several continents it did require some heavy soul searching in my free time and I want to share a bit about what I found and what we as a company believe in.
Companies are founded with pitches and profits, but movements begin with an idea. A hope really, and that’s where my journey began some years ago.
In a house not terribly far away and a not so long time ago
It was 2013. The sports website I was writing for had been temporarily shut down and I found myself without an internship for the summer. It devastated me. Not one to have nothing to do or nowhere to turn I decided to take it upon myself to give myself work. Thus Monstah Mash was born. It was a website of my own creation; a sports sited dedicated to my favorite team: the Boston Red Sox.
The Sox went on to win the World Series that year and we were catapulted along. We had thousands of daily page views, and a writing staff around the globe (literally, we had a guy from Japan at one point). It was stressful and hard at times, discouraging at others. But at the end of the day seeing the page views trickle in, comments appear on our posts, and reactions from readers it was 100% worth it. Honestly, at times I miss it.
I learned a few extremely valuable things during my time running Monstah Mash. Lessons like how to manage a remote team, build a brand, and not just create something but grow it. I also gained a front row seat to the blogging universe, because that’s what it is–a universe.
The blogging BOOM
There around 700 million blogs on the web right now. With one created every half-minute that’s, well, a ton created every single day and a great deal more created every year. If it sounds far fetched, in my time running Monstah Mash if I had a dollar for every new Sox blog that came on to the scene with the goal of revolutionizing sports media, well I’d be able to quit my day job. I realized then that what I do in the day to day with my blog really isn’t special. It didn’t matter if we covered one story a day or 10, anyone can do that. What anyone cannot do though is mimic our style and tone, authentically at least.
People didn’t read Monstah Mash because we covered all the stories, or even had the best commentary. They read it because they identified with us and our message. We were a little offbeat, sarcastic, and authentically Bostonian. We loved the Red Sox and liked to have fun and make jokes in our articles. They didn’t buy into what we did, they bought into why and how we did it.
It was that moment of realization in December 0f 2015 that I had a really good idea.
Why Blog Trackr
I’ve got loads of ideas. Some good, some okay, and some that are embarrassingly bad. It’s not the idea that I follow though, but the mission.
I was walking to the grocery store one day listening to music as I tend to do thinking about Monstah Mash when I had the above epiphany and then wondered: does everyone else know this? 700 million blogs on the web and counting, do other people realize what makes their blog so successful… or unsuccessful? No one gets into blogging with the hope that their work won’t be read, that goes against every reason why we blog. We blog because we have a message we want to be heard and a cheap and easy way to spread it. Or if you’re a business, a cheap and easy way to market it.
If you really want to boil it down to one ‘why’ it’s simple: I’m a blogger, but I love technology too and found a way to use technology to help bloggers like myself. My mission is too help people who care about their work and want it to be read. I had a vision for never having to search for a story again. To completely automate the content curation process and take something as democratic as blogging and bring something as elitist as branding and content strategy down to its level.
That’s why I believe in Blog Trackr. It’s why I learned to code, brought on a team, and spent countless hours of late weekday nights and all-day weekends building this. Because, like bloggers who care about their work, I care too.
Why me though? We all know why Blog Trackr but why Tyler Scionti.
To put it simply, I’m someone who has big ideas and loves seeing them through. I thrive on learning new skills and seeing them put to the use for the good of others while having the freedom and flexibility to try something new. It’s because I want to love what I do, and believe in my work. That’s why I put in countless hours in late week-nights and get up early on a Saturday morning and why my coffee budget has increased exponentially–because I truly and honestly believe in what we are doing and want to see it through.
I want to thank my team for sticking it with me this long, and above all I want to thank you. You know my ‘why’, my challenge to you and your blog/company is this: what’s yours?