By Ana Ćakić
How many times have you heard the phrase “content is king”? Too many times, I’m sure, if you are one of the content creators in the digital marketing world or any other Internet-related industry. That dazzling, almost prophetic statement originates from a 1996 essay by Bill Gates, the founder and former CEO of Microsoft. In the famous article, Gates argues that technology will transform the way we design, publish, and consume information:
“One of the exciting things about the Internet is that anyone with a PC and a modem can publish whatever content they can create. In a sense, the Internet is the multimedia equivalent of the photocopier. It allows material to be duplicated at low cost, no matter the size of the audience. The Internet also allows information to be distributed worldwide at basically zero marginal cost to the publisher. Opportunities are remarkable, and many companies are laying plans to create content for the Internet.”
Slightly over two decades later, we are practically living that reality. That was one of the key reasons why we decided to contact Joshua Mendelssohn, the co-founder of Factinate.com, and asked him to shares his insights on online publishing, the content creation process, and what IT services provider such as Cosmic Development has to do with it.
Joshua Mendelssohn and Jeff Myers, Co-founders of Factinate
How did you come up with the idea of creating Factinate.com? Please tell us more about it – what is the mission of your website, and who is it for?
Jeff Myers and I have always had a passion for facts and trivia, so we wanted to create a website dedicated to that. Factinate’s mission is to share fun, educational facts about anything and everything that interests our readers. It’s for trivia lovers everywhere, with a specific focus on folks interested in pop culture, history, and science.
How is Factinate different from other fun-facts sites? What makes it unique?
We try to differentiate ourselves through the quality of our content. Our content creation process is meticulous, and we rely on seasoned career writers to make our articles shine. We have a wonderful team of editors that polish content, fact check, and inject a sense of fun into the writing. We pride ourselves on having high-quality, engaging images, and the team at Cosmic Development does an incredible job making sure our images are a cut above our competition.
How does Factinate.com function? Who makes your team?
Our team of freelance article writers, which includes 20 or so seasoned writers, make the first drafts of all Factinate articles. We have a team of content creators, split between Toronto and Macedonia. The Toronto team (three full-time editors) focuses on editing and writing marketing copy for distribution. The Macedonia team (four full-time content creators), which is provided and managed by Cosmic Development, focuses on finding high-quality images, optimizing for SEO, and scheduling our Facebook page. We also have a team of media buyers who help make sure our content reaches trivia lovers everywhere.
When did you realize that your project may benefit from outsourcing and staff augmentation services? What challenges were you experiencing before we first got in touch?
We were outsourcing to Cosmic Development since the beginning. At launch, we outsourced our development to Cosmic because they had the development skills that we didn’t: the Cosmic team knows exactly how to build a website that looks great and can handle high volumes of traffic. Additionally, Cosmic is much more affordable than a senior developer based in Toronto.
As for content creation, we started working with Cosmic Development a bit later. Approximately six months in, our Toronto team found themselves burdened by time-consuming image insertion. The Cosmic content creators were extremely affordable, so having them take this off our plate was a no brainer. Having dedicated resources focused on images improved the quality of our images, and the team also ensured proper sourcing and crediting of all images.
How did you learn about Cosmic Development? What convinced you to use our services over another solution?
We knew Chris Pavlovski, one of the founders of Cosmic Development and the founder and CEO of Rumble.com, from our time working at a previous employer, who was a Rumble client. The major drivers to choose Cosmic were cost and expertise.
Cosmic Development Content Creators
What service does Cosmic Development perform for you, and how do you manage your augmentative team that operates from Macedonia?
Currently, we have four full-time content creators provided by Cosmic Development (soon to be five!). The focus of the Cosmic team is on finding high-quality images, optimizing for SEO, and scheduling our Facebook page. Additionally, we often have the Cosmic team handle tasks that are labor-intensive and require critical thinking. We’re currently adding new meta tags to our entire article database, and we have a Cosmic employee spearheading the initiative.
As for management, some training is always required to teach an employee a new task. However, the Cosmic team learns quickly, and they are generally self-sufficient after the first training session, so neither Jeff nor I really need to manage them actively. We do have a simple process in place for tracking work–our editor in chief assigns articles and the Cosmic team track completion in a spreadsheet. Other than that, it’s really hands-off.
We also have bi-weekly company-wide check-ins, but these are less for active management and more to make sure everyone feels connected to other divisions.
What are the benefits for your business that came out as a result of our work together? If you have an opportunity to recommend us to others, what would you tell them?
It’s tough to outline the “benefits” of working with Cosmic Development because they are so integral to our operation. In a certain sense, the benefit is that they allow our business to operate. To get into specifics, one of the major benefits is cost savings. Having our entire content team based in Canada would have been prohibitively expensive. Another major benefit is that they make our content better. The Cosmic employees working on Factinate are awesome, highly educated people who are very dedicated to the work they do, and this shows in the results.
I would certainly recommend Cosmic Development (and we have to many now-clients of Cosmic)! To folks in our industry (online publishing) or looking to get into the industry, Cosmic has unique expertise: they can build and manage the website you need. Additionally, Cosmic’s business process employees and content creators could help so many businesses in a variety of industries. The economics just make sense, and the people are top-notch.