On 1 November we launched a new website for The Evidence-Based Investor (TEBI), an investing blog written by our own Robin Powell, and managed by Ember Regis Group.
As you may know, designing and developing a website is usually quite an intense and challenging process for a small team, but that aside, the project really crystallised for me the value of good content that finds an audience.
With our relaunch of TEBI, we were starting a new era for the blog, where the content will be part-funded by a select group of strategic partners. It’s a blog about evidence-based investing, and our partners are advisory firms who share the same philosophy. Our partners want to attract interest in their firms by affiliating themselves with the TEBI blog and gaining exposure to its readership, and I'm glad to report that they are happy to do that without control over our output.
A note of caution for all the bloggers, podcasters and video producers out there though - for us, the relationships we now have in the investing industry have been hard-earned. Robin has been writing this blog for four years. He was motivated to write the blog because he wanted to draw attention to an industry that historically hasn’t done right by investors, as well as championing those who do things the right way.
Over time, both the audience Robin built, and the content itself became a valuable resource to financial advisers as well as the investors themselves. The income we now receive from our partners will enable us to produce a wider variety of content, and allow us to be more ambitious with it. It will also allow us to promote the site more actively, and that, combined with links to the site from our partners, will see the content being consumed by more of the people that matter - in this case, investors.
There will always be interest in a captive audience, and advertising and promotion has always been a vital revenue stream for media organisations. Just this past week I’ve been working with Reach PLC, the largest news publisher in the UK, on a video aimed at potential partners who might want to advertise in their publications, or work with them in other ways. Needless to say, their impressive readership numbers and social media followers are important messages to get across.
There's also the example of podcasts, which almost always feature adverts. As a consumer, I don’t mind these - they’re not invasive as they’re usually read by the show’s host, they’re generally short, and you can skip past them if you like. Also, they are most often linked to the subject of the podcast, so the chances are it’s something you may be interested in. To me, these last two points are the most important when it comes to putting advertising or promotion on media - if it’s relevant, and you can skip it if you want to, it’s probably ok by most people.
So, if you can find your niche (and a heck of a lot of time), your blog, podcast or Youtube channel can become valuable. And not just in terms of any profit you might personally make. As we have found, a good blog can be a springboard, with the potential to take your organisation to the next level, and spread awareness of your cause.