I was reminded of a meeting yesterday with my COO, Garry Vander Voort, while watching the College Football National Championship game last night.
Alabama Coach Nick Saban changed quarterbacks at halftime of the National Championship Game.
Alabama couldn’t get anything going in its runing game in the first half. Trailing Georgia 13-0, Saban went into the locker room, huddled his quarterbacks together and said we’re going with Tua in the second half – and may rotate back in our starter. Nothing more.
Changing quarterbacks is not unusual in its own right, but Tua Tagovailoa was a 18 year old freshman who hadn’t played a meaningful down in college football. The starting quarterback had won 25 of 27 games he started. Now Tua’s going to replace him to lead Alabama, the pregame favorite, back to win a championship.
Why the change? A quick gut feel by Saban that Alabama needed to pass in order to win. Their power running game was being shut down by Georgia and Tua was a better passer. Simple as that.
Tua threw two touchdown passes, including a walkoff bomb to another freshman in overtime to win the National Championship. A play after he got sacked for 16 yards, a play so dumb Saban said afterwards Tua wouldn’t have been capable of throwing the game winner had he been able to get to him.
A ten minute gut decision by Saban won Alabama the game. Saban’s sixth national championship, tying him with legendary Alabama coach Paul “Bear” Bryant for the most championships in college football history.
Yesterday afternoon, Garry and I were talking about LexBlog’s evolution to a publisher. By curating the contributions of legal bloggers worldwide, LexBlog would become the world’s largest source of legal news and information. Bob Ambrogi inspired both of us, big time.
Historically, LexBlog only curated LexBlog client blog publications — blogs running on our WordPress managed platform. Recently we’ve had talk of including non-LexBlog platform blogs at a cost of $50 per month. Turns out many legal bloggers were paying far for syndication and this was considered a steal by folks contacting us.
But as Garry and I talked, such payments ran into credibility problems. Largest legal news source, but only from contributors who paid?
Also had problems with growing fast. Getting people to take money out of their pocket and to put it in yours is not always easy. We’d never get all the good law bloggers and it would take a lot of time and human resources to get those we did get.
It complicated things too. LexBlog does a lot of free work for non-profits, law schools, and legal tech organizations. We would want all of their blogs, whether on our platform or not, to be included at no cost. Boy, was that going to get gray as to who’s free and who’s not. Who gets billed and who doesn’t is a mess for accounting.
I also saw more revenue opportunities by being inclusive and much bigger, faster. More relationships. More sales of existing products,. Sales of new products and solutions.
Why get bogged down on a smaller revenue items when not charging frees up time to get after large revenue.
In less than five minutes, Garry and I went with our gut. Every legal blogger (real bloggers) will be curated at LexBlog at no cost. Credibility, simplicity, growth and a big goal on the horizon – world’s largest legal news and information site by curating the contributions of legal professionals world-wide. Totally in line with Ambrogi’s thinking.
Neither Garry or I are Nick Saban. But if a guy who’s won as many titles as anyone can go with his gut on a national stage, why not us?