The Power of Community
Over 13 years ago, I started seriously mapping out a plan for what I thought would be the right kind of online magazine and community for bass players. On May 2nd, 2009, we launched No Treble. It was crude, but it had the foundation for what we wanted to try.
Our focus was to figure out a way to bring value to the global bass playing community. The most important part of that was to feature our readers like no other publication had done.
I had no idea how it would go, but over the years, it caught on, reaching between 200,000 and 300,000 people per month. We grew the platform in a way that if we shared what our readers were doing, people were seeing it, amplifying it, and giving many talented people around the world an opportunity to reach new people.
Publishing is a tough business, and while I never intended No Treble to actually be a business, the expenses grew with our success. I started consulting on the side to fund it, and we started finding some ways to monetize it. Some years were okay, other years were not. But the joy I got out of – and the continued growth – was enough. Through it all, we stayed true to our commitment to not disrupt the experience on the site with nagging ads.
When the COVID lockdown started in March, things started to fall apart. By June, monetizing it at any level was gone. By August of the following year, we were hurting pretty badly. So I pulled together some trusted people in my circle and shared the idea of turning the whole “reader-focused” concept into a “reader-supported” model. I started a Go Fund Me campaign in the most No Treble way I could think of, which included telling our story, being as honest and authentic as possible, and offering rewards.
I had no idea how this would go. I’m terrible at asking for help, and this was scary. But in 13 days, we hit our goal. The supportive notes and shares we received overwhelmed me. The funding meant that No Treble had a future.
Ultimately, what got me to this point was this: we were going to find out if we mattered to readers. If they believed in us, I believed they would support us (and they did this beyond my expectations). Alternatively, I knew that if it didn’t work out, it was time to move on.
I’m beyond grateful. And now I’m working with the team to double down on being even more reader-focused than ever. It is an amazing feeling, and I want to make sure that the feedback we heard – and the support we’ve been given – will be met with an equal amount of love in return.
To all of our supporters, I thank you on behalf of the entire No Treble team. We believe in you, and we’re so encouraged by you believing in us.