Penny Arcade is by far one of the most successful webcomics. The founders of Penny Arcade, Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins, gave a great talk at Google back in January, where they told the story of how the simple idea of creating a comic out of their lives as gamers turned into a phenom, averaging 62+ million pageviews monthly. How did they manage to get such a huge following at a time when there are so many competitors in the space?
A lot of their success comes form the fact that Penny Arcade features tons of content outside beyond just the comic itself, such as:
Most early webcomics focused just on the comic and not much else, but Penny Arcade chose to do more. How did this idea of adding more content to the page come about? Here is a quote from the talk that describes how this happened:
I managed to write a set of frames in HTML, which included some incredibly large navigation buttons. The navigation buttons were so large that the scaling kept creating this huge space on the left where there was absolutely no content. It's was a huge blank space. It was agitating to me from an aesthetics perspective. I started writing little news posts to accompany each comic strip just to fill that blank spot... now that's a core part of the site.
There is a great lesson we can learn from Mike and Jerry and their story — content drives the sale of your product, be it a comic strip, a gadget, a web app or consulting services. Stop focusing on pitching your product; share insightful and interesting content instead.Hat tip to Dre from Wages of Wins for sharing this story with us.