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Episode 079: Prepear – A Revenue Opportunity For Food Bloggers With Natalie Monson

Blog Title: Prepear

Social Media:

Prepear on Instagram

Prepear on Facebook

About: Prepear is a connected recipe platform for food bloggers to diversify their revenue streams while giving their readers the best digital recipe experience.

Notes from Episode #079: All About Prepear

  • Fun fact: Natalie’s background is in nutrition but before that she’d been interested in botany because she loves plants. She loves gardening and enjoys plant based foods too!

  • Natalie and Russ are co-founders of Prepear. They are naturally bent towards being entrepreneurs and have started multiple businesses.

  • Why the Monsons built Prepear

    • Natalie started a food blog over 10 years ago. They grew fast through Facebook help and 1-2 years they got so much traffic they even had their site crash. Then as quick as they received traffic, it changed. The algorithm was changed and they had their traffic cut in half. But their revenue doubled. This is when the idea was planted with Natalie. She wanted to help bloggers have control over their own blogs. 

  • Their vision –
    • Productize recipes – there’s a lot of markets to sell products on, like Etsy and Amazon but there isn’t much for food and recipe creators. It’s because the items are mostly digital. Apple pioneered it with subscription fees by selling a single song for $.99 and another price for a group of songs. 

    • But food bloggers aren’t going to offer free recipes if they can’t sell ad space. That’s problematic for the consumer because they are being bogged down with ads.

    • Natalie and Russ took the subscription model Apple had created and made it work for food blogs by creating Prepear. They offer a subscription service. A user can purchase an annual subscription that includes all the recipes and cookbooks that are on Prepear for an annual fee. A user can also purchase one recipe, and it’ll be ad free. Anyone can view any of the content on Prepear, but there will be ads. Prepear compensates food bloggers in a fair 80/20 split for the recipes to be on their site. 

  • Why Food Bloggers should get on Prepear

    • Prepear provides analytics specific to recipes. Bloggers have analytics in many places on many platforms but none of them were built for food bloggers especially. So Prepear built a back end that helps food bloggers view recipe metadata for SEO purposes. Prepear is testing this out with several bloggers before its rolled out for everyone and they are seeing good results. Once it’s solid they will share it but they are excited with what they are seeing thus far. 

    • Marketing system – social media isn’t a great platform for marketing. You can get traffic or lose it and have no control of it. And there is a conflict between the food blogger and the social media platform because food bloggers make money when users leave the social media platform but Facebook and Instagram want users to stay on their platforms, not visit another site. 

      • So Prepear uses email marketing. It’s more effective and helps make money. They created a targeted and specific plan combined with their marketplace and a product at the end to sell. 

      • These are relatively new and different in the food blogging space. 

-Features and How it Works

  • For Bloggers –

    • it’s free to the consumers when they sign up for the basic features. Users will see display ads but Prepear makes sure its non-invasive. 

    • Drag and drop system is built to make this an easy program for bloggers to use. 

    • Metadata is a huge benefit. You are able to see errors on a recipe and how people are using your recipes that is different from other sites. 

  • Benefits to users –

    • The ease of saving and organizing recipes. Unlike in Pinterest where you are taken into a browser experience, on Prepear, you can save a recipe and create a cookbook right in their program.

    • From the saving of a recipe to a cookbook, you can also start the shopping experience. Create a meal plan, create a grocery list, etc. The blogger is being compensated because the user isn’t being sent off Prepear. 

    • Prepear mode cooking experience guiding the user is popular. 

    • Users can create custom meal plans or purchase meal plans from bloggers that sell them. Users can also customize their meal plans within a plan too. They can use any recipe from any source (different bloggers recipes within the meal plan) on any device. There is a lot less turn because of this customizable option. 

  • To start up with the Prepear platform, scroll down to the footer of their website and click “become a Prepear Pro.” They have minimum standards for bloggers to join. Right now they are working with a wait list because they are working with their current bloggers to see them succeed. As they grow and can support more bloggers as resources grow, they’ll add more businesses. 

  • How is Prepear getting the word out about this program? 

    • Food bloggers are helping promote Prepear because they are good at building an audience and engaging them.

    • 60% of recipes online are from food bloggers, the other 40% are from big recipe companies. Prepear wants to boost the business of the solopreneur.  

  • Will Prepear take away business from the Food Bloggers?

    • This is the biggest question that Prepear gets from food bloggers: doesn’t working with Prepear take away from traffic and ad revenue of the solopreneur? Prepear is different in that they don’t index recipes. They index meal plans and cookbooks because they are purchase-only items. It won’t outrank your own content on Google. 

    • Prepear has seen increases in Google traffic for bloggers because the bloggers recipes are on Prepear. Prepear wants to boost and add to traffic for its participants. 

    • Prepear will never replace Google. Their intention is to provide a different revenue stream. They want to be ⅓ of bloggers’ revenue strategy. 

  • Natalie still runs a food blog and tests everything through hers first to make sure the business model works for both Prepear and food bloggers. 

  • Prepear is similar to the music industry. If you wanted the best experience to enjoy music, you bought it. Now it’s normal. Prepear strongly believes the free internet is changing. The best way to use recipes (digital) is through a paid experience. Both food bloggers and users will see advantages. 

  • Favorite quote: “An object in motion stays in motion and an object in rest stays at rest.” She thinks this is impactful because there are so many things to focus on and do but at times when she wants to sit and do nothing. But Natalie reminds herself that once you get going [as a food blogger], you’ll have the momentum you were looking for and help yourself keep stepping forward.

Helpful references from the episode:

Natalie can be reached via email at: [email protected]