Oh, those were fun days. I’d write one post per week, struggle with the intricacies of web hosting, and feel like a big boy when the website generated $20 of advertising revenue in a month (look ma, I own a tech company!).
I enjoyed what I was doing, but always thought at the back of my mind that the site would eventually go down the path of one of those Live Journal pages you start in your teens and abandon after a few months. I assumed that sooner or later I’d simply get tired of writing, and The Milelion would lapse into obscurity, joining the trash heap of Angelfire and GeoCities pages that came before. I mean, I couldn’t keep this up forever, right?
I figured I’d try it for 6 months. No one sued me for libel. So I tried another 6 months. And another 6 months. And so on. In 2015 I wrote 91 posts. In 2016, 274 posts. In 2017, 409 posts. As of October 2018, the site has published 543 posts and counting. Readership grew from 1,000 visitors a month to 10,000, then 100,000. Maybe the travel hacking community in Singapore is bigger than I thought. Or maybe none of you actually exist, and I’m Fight Clubbing all my pageviews in the dead of the night. Whatever it is, The Milelion has already grown beyond my wildest dreams, and I’m very thankful for that.
As you know, I had a decision on my hands back in June. I wanted to move out of management consulting, but didn’t know where to go. I wasn’t sure that The Milelion was ready for prime time, and I preferred not to resort to cyberbegging/online pimping (although I have received some rather lucrative offers for Matthew).
So I joined Mileslife, excited by the “earn miles everywhere” vision and the chance to do something special in the world of miles and points Three months later, I concluded two things: one, that the Mileslife IPO is going to be bigger than Alibaba, and two, that doing justice to my job would likely come at the expense of The Milelion. Besides, with my upcoming January nuptials, spending quality time with the Milelioness and building our home together would become the priority. The first year of marriage is crucial, and I’m not sure if I’d be able to juggle that with the demands of startup culture. I’m sure some people can, but I’m not one of them.
It was just as well that during this period, Milelion revenue started picking up. I can’t explain why, I’ll just chalk it up to God’s blessing. I found ways of monetizing traffic through events, affiliate sign ups, and advertising, while keeping the core proposition of the site, content, free. It became apparent that I could make a living doing what I love doing, without having to show too much skin (for that you’ll need the soon-to-be-launched Milelion Premium).
Long story short, Mileslife was the right opportunity at the wrong time, and at the start of this month, I made the decision to full-time Milelion (which is undoubtedly the best way to Milelion). What does this mean for the site and for you guys? Business as usual. The Milelion wouldn’t be what it is without the community, and I see no reason to fix what isn’t broken.
How can you help? You already are. You support the site when you attend our events, sign up for credit cards through our affiliate campaigns, make purchases through affiliate links or whitelist the site on your adblocker (please don’t underestimate the impact of that last one). You grow the community when you join our Facebook or Telegram Groups, subscribe to the newsletter or Telegram Channel, or simply be that guy who starts every conversation with “so I read on The Milelion…” (trust me, chicks dig that). If you run a somewhat legitimate business and want to do exciting legal things together, reach out.
Some of you have been reading the site since we first started, others have joined along the way. Whatever the case, it’s your participation, feedback, comments, and support that have made all this possible. I’d give you all a group hug, if it didn’t open me up to potential liability. Thank you everyone for your support, and let’s see where this goes.
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