On the up · 2 August 2017

Quality content over clickbait headlines drives this duo’s online sport platform

School friends
The two school friends have been in business together for just over two years
Before launching their online sport platform, RealSport, Scott Hurst and RoeI Samuel knew they wanted to create a website that prioritised content over clicks.

Unlike rival platforms, RealSport avoids misleading headlines solely targeting page views and impressions, and provides readers with a service free of pop-up ads a strategy resonating with affiliate brands and fans alike.

Having just celebrated its second birthday, RealSport now receives over a million unique users every month, with that number growing.

Business Advice sat down with the duo to find out where their platform stands in a crowded sport media environment.

  1. Who are you and what’s your business?

Scott Hurst and RoeI Samuel, co-founders of RealSport, an online sport platform focusing on integrity and quality content.

We have been best friends since school and have both been obsessed with sports our entire lives. We set out to create a platform which would give the greatest fans in the world a voice on the sports they love.

Rather than going down the route of clickbait headlines and deceiving audiences to deliver advertising impressions, RealSport provides amazing sports content for fans, by fans.

  1. How long have you been around for?

As a concept RealSport kicked off in early 2015, and we launched our first iteration of the platform in July of that year we just had our second year anniversary.

  1. How do you make money?

We create amazing content for brands that want to connect with sports fans, both on our platform and through our wider distribution networks.

  1. What makes your online sport platformdifferent and why should people take notice?

Right now, sports media is broken. Platforms measure everything on page views and ad impressions, and they understand what their audience can be tricked into clicking. At RealSport, we actually understand what sports fans engage with because they want to, not because theyve been misled.

That understanding, an understanding of what sports fans truly want, gives us a real competitive advantage.

  1. What was key in terms of getting started?

Dedication and focus. they’really are the only things we had at the start.

We spent from February to September 2015working alternatively out of our bedrooms, depending on whose mum was more fed up of us taking all the bandwidth that week.

The key is keeping your eyes on the ball, believing in your product, and not creating excuses in your mind for why you can’t create a business yourself or the time not being right.

  1. What’s your biggest achievement to date?

Weve had some great achievements, and building our amazing team has been such a great journey to see.

To have over a millionunique sports fans a month using our platform because they want to read or watch our content, not because theyve been misled or tricked into it, is an amazing achievement in our eyes. However, it’s only the start for us.

  1. What setbacks have you had along the way?

One of the hardest things about running a start up, especially when you’re staying as lean as possible, is hiring the right team. Hiring the wrong person can be costly, taking up valuable time on your runway and on the journey of your road map.


 
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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Praseeda Nair is the editorial director of Business Advice, and its sister publication for growing businesses, Real Business. She's an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.

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