GAME CHANGERS – Davy Kestens

Posted on March 17, 2011

0


The Daily Job Finder blog is featuring a new series profiling young movers and shakers entitled Game Changers.

Belgian born Davy Kestens is emblematic of the 21st century Internet entrepreneur. He’s not afraid to teach himself what he needs to know to make his idea a service. He eschews a subtle confidence that can be detected in both his work and his words. His optimism about the future and his place within it is unbound.

Daily Job Finder caught up with Kestens via email to discuss his web skills, how he intends on offering an alternative to how content is distributed via his startup Ghostbloggers, and his thoughts on early stage seed funding.

Are your web design skills self-taught or acquired through school?

I’ve had the pleasure of being able to work with computers and the Internet for as long as I can remember. When I got bored of destroying the computer and just clicking away, I started to figure out how the web works and developed my first website. In the years that followed, I kept learning more about web design and I still do every day.

Talk about the concept behind GhostBloggers. Is this the project that your currently putting most of your energy into?

The idea behind GhostBloggers.net is actually powered by a personal need. I launched the weblog RunAddicts.net in December 2009 and like every blog/website owner, I was wondering on how to get more visitors and thus, revenue.

The answer was simple, publish more unique content more frequently. However, if you want to do this, you’ll need to get some extra help because it’s hard to deliver a constant stream of unique content by yourself.

I started hiring extra freelance writers but this also brings in a lot of mess which I’m not going to discuss in detail at this time, but it basically drains the time you need to spend marketing and managing your website, and obligates you to dedicate that time into the management of the writers.

To solve this problem for myself, I’m launching an online platform – GhostBloggers – which will allow blog/website owners to buy unique content and allow writers to sell content about any topic they enjoy without the need for prospecting or any hassle.

In terms energy, I’m currently putting about 80% of my available time into this project.

You have a few projects listed on your website; have any been profitable or do you foresee them reaching that point in the near future?

Absolutely. Though some of the projects listed on my website have been cancelled due to numerous reasons – high upkeep, unprofitable, mistakes – my current active projects are profitable or will be soon; they include:

– My personal blog and an different dutch blog: great for personal branding / marketing and continuously deliver me with web design work. Profitable.
– RunAddicts: Not yet highly profitable, but reached a break even a while ago. Last month I had a huge increase of visitors so I expect more revenue soon.
– GhostBloggers: Hasn’t launched yet (still in beta), however I’m confident this will become a success.

You have about a thousand plus followers on Twitter; do you work on expanding your personal brand or are you more focused on promoting a particular project?

Actually, that’s something I’m a bit struck by. I don’t really feel that my personal tweets have a real value but for some reason, I steadily gained 1000+ followers. Currently I’m not working on expanding my personal brand since I’m completely focused on building and growing RunAddicts and GhostBloggers.

Have you applied for any seed funding from early stage incubators?

No I did not. I feel that it’s always better if you are able to launch a product without the need for any funding. Ok, you’re using your own money and paying from your own pocket, but that shouldn’t be an issue if you’re confident about the future success of your idea or project.

What’s the project that your most proud of? And without getting too specific, what direction might future projects take?

At the moment, I’m most proud of GhostBloggers. No doubt. Why? That’s because I’m bootstrapping it from the beginning until the end, and while doing so I’ve seen myself and my knowledge grow in numerous directions. It’s the hardest project so far. It will be the best, I’m sure. About possible projects in the future: I guess I’ll most likely be building projects relevant to the current ones which will be able to improve each other. But who knows what the future holds? It will be awesome and loads of fun, that’s for certain.

Follow Kestens on Twitter

Advertisements
Posted in: Game Changers