The news about the closure of Dayre saddens me, beyond words can describe. I empathize with all the Dayre users, especially those who’ve expressed their thoughts in the comment thread of the news piece.
I thought that the least I could do is perhaps explain the key factors which led to this decision - a picture that you would likely have no visibility of, as a user.
1. Did not hit critical mass.
Dayre is a platform. The goal of every platform is to grow its user base. Once you have a significant user base, you can monetize it by a) selling ads, b) selling user data, c) selling subscriptions, d) selling the platform (like Instagram did) and etc to sustain your platform. There are also platforms like Wikipedia, which sustains itself by raising donations from its users.
But before you could do (a) or (b), you will need big numbers to make it worthwhile for advertisers, advertising and media agencies to spend their time selling it to decision makers, planning a campaign, scripting, QA, trading, monitoring, optimizing the campaign and reporting. Unfortunately, we did not have those numbers. For illustration purposes, FB & IG have 23 million active users in Malaysia alone. Dayre on the other hand has less than 50k active users across the world.
I will explain (c) under point 4.
2. We did not have the funds to take it to critical mass.
To take a shot at bringing it to critical mass, you will need a development team, a marketing team and plenty of marketing funds. There’s also time cost from the management team, administrative and regulatory costs.
To give you context, you should Google up the size of development teams behind popular apps that you use. And Google up marketing dollars spent by apps like Traveloka and Grab too.
I’ve been a marketing man all my life, and even the thought of the prospects of developing and marketing Dayre at a large scale excites me. However, we simply did not have the funds (we’re talking millions of SGD) to pursue the Dayre dream.
3. Did not generate enough ad revenue.
Considering all the monetization methods mentioned above under point 1, selling ads is always the lowest hanging fruit. And that’s what we tried to do for almost a year - despite us not having the numbers to begin with. We had to swim against strong waves, but my team is always determined to take on challenges.
We created a sponsored post ad unit - like the ones you see on your FB and IG newsfeeds. We started selling sponsored posts on Dayre, like what we do with our Nuffnang community. We gave away free brand and product mentions to allow advertisers to sample. We bundled it with sponsored events. And many other methods explored by my very capable team that come with decades of experience working in the largest global media agencies.
We also made our top sales people spend additional hours to bundle Dayre into their client pitches and do diligent follow ups. We were able to generate some ad revenue, but regretfully, it was not sufficient.
4. Did not generate enough subs.
When I was appointed by Netccentric in March 2017, I have looked at our subscriber base of Dayre Plus and it was not at all encouraging. I remember discussions with my team to ramp up the base of Dayre Plus and one of the ways we agreed to pursue was to lower the barrier of entry. We went on to reduce the price of subscription and saw the base grow significantly, from where it started at least.
Today we have 338 Dayre Plus subscribers. We are very thankful to all our subscribers, but again it wasn’t enough to help us make Dayre a viable platform.
5. Commitment to shareholders.
As a CEO of a public company, I represent all the executives and am answerable to a board of directors, who then report to shareholders.
When I was appointed in March 2017, my biggest mandate was to turn the group around and start generating profits. One of the key strategies deployed by the management team was to scale down on loss making entities and scale up profit making ones. Dayre unfortunately belonged to the prior and in spite of that, we went on for a year to try and turn it into the latter.
Regretfully, we’ve come to this day. Beyond the above explanation, which I’ve tried my best to personally deliver, I would also like to offer interested parties the opportunity to make offers to acquire Dayre. This would perhaps be another way to keep the Dayre community alive.
Thank you for all the support you’ve given us.
Saturday, 10 Feb 2018
Enjoy reading this?
Join our community! Download the app, and get updates from desmondkiu. Remove this bar by logging in.