UK map
Credit: Image by Thinkstock
Men's lifestyle news and features site Blokely is to create nine regional bureaux in an effort to find a new and sustainable business model.

The site, which aims to give men ideas for things to do with their "spare money, spare time and spare mind", has been running for three years and makes money both through advertising and a metered paywall, charging readers £1.50 a month for access.

Blokely is now planning to sell licences to journalists who will run the regional sections as quasi-independent businesses and earn a revenue share.

The Blokely site lists the nine regions and explains that the entrepreneurial journalists running the regional sites will get 100 per cent of local advertising revenues that they bring in, a proportioned share of 20 per cent of all display and advertorial revenues from the main site, plus a fee for every person who signs up to the paywall.

A regional licence costs £250, plus there is a monthly licence fee of between £62.50 and £93.00, depending on the region.

Blokely regions
What the site for Birmingham will look like

James York, founding editor and owner of Blokely, told the idea for "licensing off" Blokely regions came after working with freelancers and wanting to find a better way to motivate those writing for the site.

Blokely started to "scale back" on the number of freelancers it was using last year and it now wants to "scale up" and offer "journalists an incubated business of their own", York said.

Those who buy a licence to run a Blokely region will get an "off-the-shelf site", "a bit of independence" and a "share of the master business that they are helping build", York explained.

The journalist's task will then be to make men's lifestyle content regional. "We want to have locally targeted content that makes people in Bristol think 'that's my life'," York, who will run the London region, said.

Each region will provide at least one piece of content a day, which is the minimum quota under the licence terms.

York said those who buy a licence will have access to the brand's social media accounts, contacts, plus the content management system. The monthly fee will cover unlimited web hosting and marketing.

Asked about the £1.50 a month metered paywall, York said he has found the model works well for the site. "Our niche as a brand is something different," he said.

York is also behind Knitd, a web app for premium content, which has reported on previously.

Free daily newsletter

If you like our news and feature articles, you can sign up to receive our free daily (Mon-Fri) email newsletter (mobile friendly).