After a few years of running DollarsAndSense, we have finally decided to do something we never done before, to write and publish a non-finance related article about ourselves on our website!
Helping People Make Better Financial Decisions
In 2012, when we were just students, we created DollarsAndSense with one simple mission – to help people make better financial decisions. Every week, we brainstormed and wrote finance articles in hopes of making a positive impact on someone’s life, or at very least, prevent them from making money mistakes that they may regret.
All too often, it’s easy for start-ups to lose sight of the reason they started in the first place. Some start-ups have no choice, as they realize there just isn’t a strong enough demand for the products or services that they are offering. Others may grow, only to realize that their business model isn’t sustainable, and would require a pivot. These are difficult decisions that founders have to make all the time for their businesses in order to survive.
We have been fortunate to be able to stay true to our mission. The online media business is not easy given the fierce competition for eyeballs, the requirement to remain relevant and the perception that online content should always be free.
We have always been driven by our core belief, mapped out when we first started, that personal finance education should be readily accessible for all who are interested.
Talent – The Number One Factor In Any Company
For us, one of the biggest achievements for the year is that we were able to expand our team.
We were able to bring onboard, on a full-time basis, another one of our initial co-founders. Dinesh has been writing and helping the website since we started in 2012 was instrumental in defining the direction of the website. He brings to the team not only his extensive writing experience, but also invaluable corporate experience, having worked in one of Singapore’s leading investor relations firm for more than 4 years. We hope this will translate to a higher quality and a wider variety of content.
On the business development and digital marketing front, we also brought onboard Deanna, who has close to 10 years of experience in the marketing and public relations space prior to joining us.
Those of us who work in creative agencies would know the typical structure of agencies. We have the “suits”, referring to the people who meet and understand the client’s needs, and the “creatives”, who are the ones that execute the work required. Deanna integrates both functions into a single role. She is one of the rare hires that is almost impossible to find these days, though it certainly helps that she is also my wife :)
This year, we were fortunate to meet some really awesome interns. Aside from helping us bring down the average age of our team, we also enjoyed some really good content from our younger writers who bring with them fresh perspectives on financial concerns that millennials care about. Even as we ourselves grow older, it’s important for us to continue remaining relevant in educating the next generation.
Seeking Good Growth
Expanding and maintaining a bigger team wouldn’t have been possible without growth within the company. On that front, I am extremely grateful that we managed to achieve most of the important goals that was set for the website in 2016.
We observed healthy growth in both traffic and revenue for DollarsAndSense and that gave us the confidence we needed to go out and do more. We are thankful for the partners that we worked with over the past year, who share the same vision to improving financial literacy in Singapore, and whose support allows us to continue sustaining the website. We hope to continue working with them in meaningful ways in 2017.
Looking Forward To A Challenging 2017
We have some really exciting plans for 2017!
None of these plans that we have are new to any of us on the team. They have always been part of what we wanted and intended to do.
Finding the right people to execute them well will be our challenge, especially given the fact that most of these projects will require internal funding. As we all know, media start-ups are not exactly flushed with cash either, unless you get a big $3 million raise like what e27 did earlier this year.
But that’s our challenge we hope to overcome in 2017. And if we do, we are confident that it will continue to value add and help people make better financial decisions.
Last but certainly not least, thank you for always reading us. Ultimately, it’s your interest and support in reading and sharing articles from DollarsAndSense that keeps us going.
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