How tech/business newsletter The Hustle raised $300,000 from its readers
Laura Hazard Owen of Nieman Lab interviewed Sam Parr, the founder of tech and business newsletter The Hustle, which has more than 300,000 subscribers and raised $300,000 from its readers in just more than two days.
Here is an excerpt:
Owen: How big is your team?
Parr: We’re a team of 12, about to grow to 15 or 16 in the next couple months. We have a three-person editorial team and everyone else is focused on building the technology and building the list. [The Hustle said on its SeedInvest page: “Because we’re email first and driven by subscribers, not page views, we’ve been able to thrive with a small team of writers. This allows us to put most of our resources into growth via tech and marketing, and not clickbait-like content designed only to capture attention without delivering substance.”] We do big events as well. We’re profitable just from the advertising in the email, but the events make us a lot more profitable. [Between January and October 2016, The Hustle made $473,675; 81 percent of that came from events and the remaining 19 percent came from advertising.]
Owen: You’re also raising money, including some money from readers.
Parr: We ended up raising a little over a million from institutions, so like normal VCs, but also guys like Tim Ferriss, [Behance founder and VC] Scott Belsky, [Bleacher Report founder] Dave Nemetz, people like that.Our community — we consider ourselves a community more than a media publication — is very big, they love us a lot, and they always ask to invest. As a little shtick to get them involved, we let them invest. And we ended up raising something like $300,000 in like 40 or 50 hours. It was crazy. I thought that we were gonna get $150,000 over 90 days, but we got that in the first handful of hours.
Owen: What do they get for investing?
Parr: They’re a small shareholder. The average price was like $1,000, and so they own a small piece of the business.
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