The Fluid, Creative Agency Inside of RebelMouse

A lot of people know RebelMouse from when we went viral in 2012 as a social aggregation tool — later dubbed "social media's front page." Those who stuck around with us got to later know us as a social-forward CMS. This is still true, but RebelMouse has since evolved into an enterprise-level publishing solution that — just like we always have — adapts to the current digital landscape. So while we were born in the age of social, we've kept up with every peak and valley the industry has traversed since the birth and boom of digital.


What a lot of people may not know yet is that every media property we work with doesn't just get to use our platform. Our clients get a global creative agency made up of content optimizers, social strategists, and audience builders. We continuously analyze all of our clients' data and performance so we can help guide your strategy toward a path of growth and revenue. RebelMouse is not simply lean tech, but also a full-service creative agency. Here's a little bit about how we got here, and more information about the services we offer.

Box-Free Beginnings

Growing up, my dad started a software company, which gave me the chance to learn how to write code from a very young age. I loved it immediately. The act of creating! A lot of people think of coding as a math or science, but I have always seen it as an artistic language. From the moment I touched code, it was an act of expression for me. My first program was a "Choose Your Own Adventure" experience. It was truly an act of writing and a different way of telling a story.

What I realized quickly as I began my career in my late teens and early 20s, was that people wanted to put me in a box and label me as merely "a developer." I wanted much more than to write code and be told what tech should do. By this point, I had already worked on viral projects (Dog Island is particularly fun) and built a real e-commerce business for Palo Alto Software.

I have always been able to see the big picture, which is much larger than simply the coding side of tech. It's why I decided to make RebelMouse a well-rounded product and not just a software offering. Our clients don't only sign up for a publishing platform, but also a real service that propels their properties to success on site, social, and search.

Finding the Dream Team

As I looked at the potential opportunities for who I wanted to work with, the way Jonah Peretti and Ken Lerer (co-founders with Arianna Huffington at The Huffington Post) approached tech was exactly me. When I became CTO of The Huffington Post, I had both design and product teams reporting to me, and I was responsible for overall traffic. I worked every day with an amazing editing team so that we could collaborate on how to build a massive and loyal audience together. It was far beyond the confinements of a developer-only box.

At RebelMouse, I've been able to put together a team of people who are like me. Most of the team, regardless of each individual's position and title, is technical. Developers manage accounts directly, working not only on product, but strategy, audience growth, and revenue, too. It's possible because, like me, they don't self-identify as developers in their heart of hearts. The net result is an amazing team of people who have fallen in love with particular aspects of the media and content business. And those aspects can be anything — from how to get the most out of Instant Articles to what's possible with Google AMP to growth hacking Instagram to wiring your site for maximum monetization.

Reaching Rebellious Heights

Today, RebelMouse is a fully remote powerhouse. I closed our SoHo office in New York City because I believe so strongly in distributed teams. We have no bar for geography when we look for talent on the team, but we have a super-high bar for talent. Having an office confused our culture, and accidentally excluded our brilliant people who weren't there to hop into a meeting room day to day. Now we're closer and more connected than ever, and we stay linked together across 26 countries. We're fluid between roles and time zones, and we work with clients who are meshed together with their teams, too.

We utilize a very unique approach in our mission, and it works for the awesome brands we work with, such as United Airlines, BlackRock, PAPER Magazine, and many more. We're inspired by intuition and gut, but we get to check everything against data, and are able to see what is working across a huge set of categories and verticals.

Below are just some of the specific services we offer at RebelMouse. If you're interested in creating something viral and awesome together, then email us at creative@rebelmouse.com.

Site Design: We've finally entered an industry shift where site design truly matters again. Users are exasperated with the platforms and more willing to spend time on site, which is good news for publishers. Whether your content calls for a minimalist structure like Axios, a more artistic aesthetic like PAPERMag.com, or a subscription-based experience, we'll create a look that's easy to use for your content creators while still being a key driver of user loyalty.

Social Growth: A lot of businesses still worry that organic growth on the platforms is dead. While the oversaturation of content has created a lot of noise in recent years, it's also created what we call a universe of creators. As a result, we've developed proprietary technology that leverages this universe to identify influencers across platforms right from within our Entry Editor. We work closely with you through these tools to amplify your message with every publish.

Monetization: RebelMouse is invested in a lean tech model that opens up new revenue streams for you to see impactful return on your content. We make sure your brand is optimizing the right ad networks and has a premium sales pitch so you can reach your true revenue potential. We help you through time-tested best practices that have delivered again and again.

Custom Web Design: We built RebelMouse to be as flexible and fluid as we are. That means if we believe in the idea you have or the new feature you want to build, we can not only build it, but make the idea even better through implementation.

Our unique journey over the years has enabled our clients to both experience amazing statistics that crush industry standards, and reap next-level growth at a time when a lot of publishers are worried about making ends meet.

We're here to help you and your brand prosper, no matter the state of the social ecosystem. Even if you aren't currently able to switch to our CMS, you can still take advantage of any of our strategy services. Drop us a line to schedule a quick chat. We guarantee we'll be able to add value within the first fifteen minutes.

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Why RebelMouse Is the Best Content Marketing Platform

RebelMouse is a unique platform and company. The company was founded on the vision that media companies would need an always-modern solution to thrive in the new connected internet, and that brands would have to behave like new media companies and use the same platforms.

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At RebelMouse, we believe creative teams are successful when collaborative ideas can be easily tested and turned into strategic choices quickly. However, content creators are already pinched for time, and deploying a test on a new site approach or design can mean an entirely new set of tasks to contend with.

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How COVID-19 Has Changed Four Key Components of Marketing

Picking up the pieces and the importance of building trust in a pandemic

As the second half of 2020 begins to pass us by, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage on throughout the global community. The longevity of the pandemic has left thousands of industries struggling to find an appropriate position in the marketplace that will allow them to sustain themselves alongside daily tragedy.

The pandemic is far from over, but publishers and marketers are beginning to sift through the aftershocks of what COVID-19 has done to the web. Here's a quick look at the decline in conversion growth during the first few weeks of the pandemic in the United States:

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The Feed Builder Dashboard allows you to create custom RSS, Atom, and JSON feeds. You can access this dashboard by appending the following to your site's URL: r/dashboard/feed-builder

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The Current Sections element pulls a list of your sections to be displayed as a sidebar on your page. It can also show subsections. Click + Add Element and scroll down to Current Sections.

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How to Add Links in Entry Editor

To insert a link into any article, highlight the text you want hyperlinked in Entry Editor, and then click on the chain icon in the formatting toolbar and select Insert Link. You can also insert a link from scratch without highlighting existing text.

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Austonia Launches a Truly Local Austin Source for News

Following their launch on RebelMouse in April 2020, Austonia is establishing itself as a great source of local news in Austin, Texas. Austonia combines its authentically Austin news with RebelMouse's cutting-edge platform to grow an audience of loyal subscribers.

The Vision

  • Exclusively Austin news
  • Truly local feel
  • Only promote local Austin advertisers
  • No programmatic ads
  • No paywalls to reach a larger audience
  • Led by a Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial advisor, with five full-time staff members
  • Build community through digital media
  • Easily optimize content across platforms in real time

Why They Chose RebelMouse

  • Sophisticated Entry Editor purpose-built for search, social, and emerging digital formats
  • Easily incorporate powerful features to drive engagement
  • Leveraged the RebelMouse Insights Dashboard and real-time analytics data to quickly act on viral hits
  • Track record and impressive client list
  • Trust established during the initial conversations

Austonia’s Three Months Later: Real Results

  • Articles ranked on social and search right from the start
  • After a great first 15 days following their April launch, the growth continued during the next 15-day period leading into May, where traffic grew by 80%
  • During their second 30-day period that ended in June, Austonia saw 12% more growth (no sophomore slump!)
  • By July, 30-day traffic grew by another 80%!
  • And most recently, August gave them another 70% boost in traffic
  • All together, the last 30 days saw 4x more traffic than their first 30 days
  • The growth continues in Q3!

Pageviews

Unique Visitors

April 2020–August 2020 via Google Analytics. Pageviews and User growth, both daily and a 42-day moving average.

And Stuff Like This Happens

When Austonia had the scoop on Joe Rogan moving to Austin, they used the power of RebelMouse to distribute the article across digital channels and maximize the viral impact.

The article started ranking on Google quickly, and as national media sites and social pages linked to their article, Austonia got close to almost 200,000 organic pageviews!

Why Austonia ❤️s RebelMouse

Built-in Modern Technology Integrations: With out-of-the-box compatibility with AMP, Facebook Instant Articles, and various other formats and feeds, Austonia was able to avoid an internal technical hire and still have constant technology upgrades to stay ahead of the curve.

Real Knowledge: Austonia considers RebelMouse to be more than just a tech company — it's best-in-class global expertise.

"When we chose RebelMouse, we did not yet fully appreciate what they offer beyond just technology. The best-in-class team is made up of really smart people from all over the world, working for major clients all over the world, and I benefited from that expertise and experience. As an independent local publisher, this was incredibly valuable and I have so much gratitude to RebelMouse for our success"

—Mark Dewey, Publisher and CEO of Austonia

Change Your Publishing Platform

Just like Austonia, all properties on our platform grow at mind-boggling rates, and are built in a way that allows publishers to focus on producing great content, which in turn becomes sustainable, high-growth social traffic and loyal, long-lasting communities. Customers like Austonia who trust their digital strategy to the experts in distributed content are able to compete with high-budget global news corporations and show up everywhere first!

Request a proposal today and let's start working together.

Select JW Player in Layout & Design Tool

RebelMouse has a seamless integration with JW Player so that you can easily embed videos into your articles.

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Here's a example of what social share buttons can look like:

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