Last Sunday, I published part 1 of the story of Coin Crunch. I spoke about how Coin Crunch started and how it got where it is now. You can read it here – https://coincrunch.in/2018/07/15/the-story-of-coin-crunch-part-1/
This is part 2 of the story. I want to tell you how Coin Crunch is cashflow positive, how RBI’s decision has affected us, what competitors and exchanges think about us and what we might do in future to never deflect from our vision.
How is Coin Crunch Making Money?
Coin Crunch was doing very good in terms of viewership and soon we were approached by our first client to write a sponsored article. After many negotiations, the deal was sealed. To date I do not charge a penny more than I charged my first client. We have grown in terms of readers and ranking and yet, I personally believe that this is not the time to exploit the readership for money.
After a few days, I received offers for banner ads. The first time I sold the banner ad, I sold it for very less. I didn’t realise how much potential it has, the banner is visible on any page of CoinCrunch, I made the mistake of undervaluing it. The next time I sold it and I still sell it at the same rate, I realised that this has more potential, but once again, it is not wise to exploit too much of it.
Today, we make enough money for Coin Crunch’s survival from ad revenue. But the situation looks a little grim going forward. Why? Well, if India’s stance on Crypto is negative, advertisers lose interest in the market. And we can see it happening. In the past 4 weeks I haven’t received a single inquiry for advertisement. I used to get emails from atleast 3 agencies in one week. But don’t worry, I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve as of now to keep this business profitable.
I think the most amazing thing about Coin Crunch is that we are a [dot]in domain. It just symbolises that we are in India, for Indians. You all read news about Justin Sun doing an airdrop or that Binance suffered a security breach from various if not all media outlets. True?
So why should I publish it? Just for a few eyeballs? Unless Coin Crunch can add some more information or correct any information already published, there is no point in publishing the same thing. If I hire one employee to just copy stuff from other news websites, how fast do you think we can scale from 50k page views to 100k? Pretty damn fast.
But Coin crunch is for India. If an Indian exchange is launching a new product, it has to be on CoinCrunch. If an international exchange is launching a new product, it will be everywhere anyway. If I find something wrong with an Indian exchange, I will publish that immediately. We have done it several times already. If there is an Indian legit ICO, it will find space on CoinCrunch. We are India first.
CoinCrunch was made to fight the mainstream media in India. It only makes sense that the news here is localised too.
Failed Hirings, Current Status and Future of CoinCrunch
You must have seen me saying we have a few interns. That is because we have had a bunch of them. All these students are really excited to work in the new in-thing “blockchain” and “cryptocurrency”, but when you hire them and give them work, they slack. Why? Because this is hard work. To write a page about a product, you need to read the whitepaper and several under articles. Many students fail to do enough research.
I hired my first intern who quit in 2 days because she “had to study for MBA”. For my second intern, I made a contract so he cannot ditch me, for three months. He started slacking in 10 days. Eventually he stopped responding after a month. He texted me for an internship certificate after two. Ofcourse I made him a certificate for his work of one month. No respect for the contract.
Third and fourth interns I hired were for graphics and social media. The graphics intern took numerous calls with me to develop a new physical product which I wanted to give away to my readers. Everything was finalised and then suddenly she stopped taking my calls and answering my emails. The social media person didn’t know what should go on our Instagram so we have an instagram with one photo, that’s it.
I tried to hire 3 employees. One denied because it wasn’t “secure” enough as I was asking him to work from home on his personal computer. Another one changed his mind and asked to come on board part time after I sent an offer letter for full time employment. Third one I tried to hire, agreed, accepted the offer letter and later on the day of joining said he can’t join because he got another job. The second candidate came back to me with the acceptance of my offer but I had to say no because I had hired the third one, who eventually ditched too.
But it all turned out to be good for us. July has been a bad month for CoinCrunch revenues so hiring an employee would have added a lot of pressure. But it also got me thinking that right now, the focus should be on improving the product more than adding employees. I never went through a seed funding round so I may as well reach out to some friends now.
You might think I am a bad recruiter. That I have a bad taste in hiring people. Maybe you are right. Maybe I lack the skillsets to find the right person for coincrunch. Its best if I stop hiring right now. The last couple of interns who were working in the background, gathering data or trying to get details anonymously have left now. Cryptocurrency and Blockchain is not a sought after industry anymore after RBI’s Banking ban.
Coin Crunch will be successful, I will make sure of it. It will be in the lines of my vision. We are going to literally be the most trusted source of crypto news in India. I say literally because everyone else seem to be using this phrase to describe themselves and has little value, some of them even in their first week of operation
Some websites merely rely on eyeballs. So their articles are 200 words. Possibly a one minute read loaded with ads. You can never know when the article ends because there will be full page ads in between two paragraphs. No one wishes you to read stuff. Everyone wishes you click on the catchy headline, read a couple of lines, align with their pseudo opinion and share the article or click on the ads.
This is journalism today. I cannot stand it. I want you to read my article. I want you to take out 15 minutes to read an article with over 1000 words, understand it, question it, criticise it and then share it. Share it with people who will take out 15 minutes to read the article as well.
We no longer put ads between the article. There are no sidebars. There is no distraction until you completely read the article. All of this because Coin Crunch wants you to read and ask questions. I personally want to empower you to ask questions to people you normally don’t. But you should.
We have much competition in India. There are plenty of websites writing news on Cryptocurrency and blockchain. But I am not very worried. They will survive and possibly always rank higher than CoinCrunch, but on CoinCrunch you’re connecting with me and you will connect with others who will write articles on Coin Crunch. Our guest authors have loved to publish on Coin Crunch in the past and are still publishing.
So, trust is the main factor I would focus on for Coin Crunch. If we aren’t trusted by our readers we are doing our job wrong.
Relationships with Exchanges and Competitors
As of now, I, Naimish Sanghvi is the name behind Coin Crunch. I personally have good repo with exchange founders and some of the other crypto journalists. I have written bad reviews, have blatantly accused exchanges for multiple reasons and yet joke around with them outside of Coin Crunch.Some hold grudges, many respect opinions.
Many other journalists and I chat regularly. We discuss the subject of cryptocurrency, the exchanges, and how something can be reported, etc. Sometimes we call each other out publicly. But that’s the thing. Until you are told you are wrong, you wouldn’t know. So I prefer my relationship with other journalists. There is a lot to learn from them. If I want Coin Crunch to be successful, Coin Crunch cannot ignore the other experienced people in the field.
A New Beginning
So folks, that’s the story until now. But it won’t be in future. Coin Crunch can become a global product, or maybe the biggest in India. We might soon have 10 employees, or 50 or 100. Pretty soon we may be exposing all cryptocurrency scams. But nothing, and I mean it, nothing of this sort is possible without your support.
Our readers are the biggest assets of Coin Crunch and we are very grateful for your constant support and encouragement. There is nothing more in the world I would wish for than your support and maybe donations later on. So guys stick around as we progress towards transparency in the cryptocurrency universe. I know you will.