Interview with Jason Calacanis of Weblogs Inc
Jason McCabe Calacanis.
Jason McCabe Calacanis is best known for his steerage of Weblogs Inc. — a less-than $10m a year blog network — into a snug berth with AOL, the world media giant. Leaving aside the effects of some political blogs, it was the most bravura advance of the blogosphere over the past two or three years.
Jason has kindly given his valuable time for an interview with Syntagma, in which he imparts some essential tips for success in the blog network business:
1. How has the sale of WIN to AOL affected the blog network scene in general?
Frankly, I don’t know that it has had any effect. When an exit happens sometimes it validates the business model for other investors or buyers, but it’s not like we’ve seen 100 people raise money or get bought since our deal. In fact, I don’t think anyone has been bought, and the only site to raise money is that Pajamas Media thing (or whatever they are calling it now).
2. How has being part of AOL affected you personally?
I have healthcare now.
3. Do you ever get nostalgic for your freewheeling startup days?
As far as I’m concerned AOL is my new startup company. I’m having a lot of impact here and the place is very open to change and new things. So, forgive me if I’m not nostalgic for the days of worrying about payroll and servers going down every other week.
4. What are the key points for success with a blog network?
Today it is really about focus. When we started we tried a lot of different things, but there was no competition. Now you’ve got a lot more folks involved in creating blogs for profit, so spreading yourself thin is a recipe for disaster.
5. What’s the single most effective monetization step for a blog network?
Create world-class content every day for a year. Folks get one to three months into blogging and they’re like “I don’t have an audience.” Uhhh…. well, it’s only been three months.
If you’re going to make it in blogging today you have really be willing to invest a decent amount of time (or money).
Thanks a lot, Jason.