Two years ago, I built a radio station for my religious community: the Messianic Jewish and Hebrew Roots community: Chavah Messianic Radio. Since then, things have really taken off: I wrote a popular software article about it. My traffic has shot through the roof. We’ve surpassed 1 million tunes served. I open sourced the project, added new features. It’s been great.
Fast forward to a few months ago, a Coptic Christian man saw Chavah, was impressed, and asked for help building a version of it for the Coptic Christian community. This would be a special branded version of Chavah that plays chants, hymns, prayers, and sermons from the Egyptian Coptic Christian community.
I figured this was a great idea and a good way to help fellow disciples of Messiah (who are facing Islamic persecution, by the way), so I jumped at the opportunity.
Well folks, fast forward a few months, and I now have something to show to that end.
We’re still getting the thing ramped up, but you can see it now in its infancy:
Try it out at CopticBox.com. As you can see, we don’t have many tunes up yet (maybe like 12 hymns and sermons), but we’ll be adding more soon.
Cool stuff, eh?
Drum roll, please…
On that note, something interesting has happened in the last few months: I’ve had several different folks approach me to build a custom version of Chavah for their community.
One guy is using Chavah to start a business around an innovative way of connecting artists and listeners:
Another guy is aiming to run the place to go for Nigerian music on the web.
Another guy’s playing indie rock from central Illinois:
For all of these secular purposes, I’ve charged a fee to get them started. In doing so, I’ve made several hundred dollars now – and I wasn’t even trying to sell anything. Not bad, eh?
Speaking with these contacts, it sounds like there’s more money to be had via consulting, adding features, fixing bugs, updating the look and feel of their sites. (As an added bonus, I can roll these new features and fixes into Chavah Messianic Radio – Messiah’s disciples get the cream of the crop, oh yeah!)
But all this got me thinking: if I can make hundreds of dollars without actually trying to sell anything (these people approached me), how much can I make if I actually, you know, try to sell it?
Bottom line: I’m starting a tech company. The startup’s first service will be building specialized internet radio stations – things like Chavah, CopticBox, PrairieAsunder, UsoundRadio, iNaija – and providing consulting around those stations. Furthermore, I’d like to offer the whole package – I host the station, music, give you the software and tools to manage it – and offer that at a premium.
What’s great is, I don’t need external funding; this is a side-project to bring in extra income. And, I don’t need sales people – the sales are already coming to me. I already have a product to sell, so it’s low risk. And what’s more, I already have customers and some small revenue coming in, so I know I’m building the right thing.
Sounds like a recipe for success, no?
So, yeah, go me! Entrepreneurial spirit, rah rah rah.
Wish me luck. I’ll let you fine folks know when my company launches.