Basically, the way their site works is this: Readers pay a $5/month subscription fee that is distributed to their favorite blogs based on how often they visit them. So if I visit 5 blogs equally, each blogger gets $1 a month from me. I’m supporting great blogging, and the bloggers actually make a little money — or a LOT of money, if they have, say, 10,000 readers.
The problem is that not many bloggers are signed up with Kachingle. As of now, they have 108 sites signed up, and not all are even English-language sites. In fact, none of the blogs I regularly follow has signed up. So I’m paying $5 for nothing. It’s only worth it to me if my favorite blogs are signed up, and they’re not.
On the other end, bloggers don’t have much incentive to sign up unless there are a lot of people handing out money. The biggest payout so far has been $85.92, to Carta, a German site, based on 34 people who support the site.
I have to imagine Kachingle is burning through quite a bit of capital getting their system up, what with coders, marketers, support staff, and rent to pay. But they’ve got a chicken and egg problem. They won’t get readers without content, and they won’t get content without paying readers. How to fix it? Use some of that money to buy themselves a henhouse preloaded with both chickens and eggs. Here’s how:
They need both bloggers and readers. So what they should do is give bloggers some seed money to prime the pump. Send emails out to 100 influential bloggers in a variety of specialties: politics, gossip, sports, science, and so on. Here’s the text of the email:
Would you like to divide $1000 between yourself and your readers, while building a steady revenue stream for your blog?
We’ll give you the $1000 if you register for our site for one year. Not only do you get to keep $400 right off the bat, but the rest of it goes directly to your readers, who will in turn use it to support your blog and others like yours.
That $600 will support 10 subscriptions to Kachingle for a full year. Every time your readers visit your site, you get some of that money. And YOU get to pick which readers get the money. You could run a contest, pick your favorite commenters — whatever you want. And since we’re giving out a full $100,000 to bloggers like you, you’re likely to get a whole lot more money back as their readers discover your site via kachingle.com.
Visit our site at kachingle.com for more information, and feel free to contact us if you have any additional questions or would like to claim the $1000 for you and your readers.
Now they’d have 100 top blogs registered for the site, 1,000 readers who actively support those blogs, and a whole lot of publicity from the best bloggers in the business.
When new readers visit Kachingle, they’d actually have a worthwhile array of blogs to choose from, so they’d be more likely to sign up for real money. When new bloggers sign up, they’d see that others are making real money for the site and so would be more likely to do it without an incentive.
A site like Kachingle needs a critical mass to get started, and a program like this, which seems expensive, is actually cheap compared to the years of capital they’d have to spend to build a content and subscriber base from scratch.
Oh, and what about that extra $10,000? That’s my fee for setting this project up for them.
Update: It just occurred to me that they don’t need to spend that $100,000 all at once. The $60,000 in subscriptions gets paid out $5000 per month. The $40,000 in blogger fees should probably come in two chunks: $200 at the start of the year and $200 at the end. So this project would only cost $25,000 for the first month (plus my $10,000 fee, of course!).