The coming new year will mark a decade since the creation of Brad Ahn’s first sports publication, Heat Nation. Since 2011, the LA-based founder and CEO has built up a respectable reputation within the sports industry, and it’s due to the high-quality content each of his publications produces. With a team of experts to back him up, it’s no guess as to how Brad has managed to scale to such heights over the years.
Let’s take it back to when he began his entrepreneurial journey, with a blog called Heat Nation. It focused on the basketball team Miami Heat, and Brad would provide his readers with all the latest news, updates, and media surrounding them. He posted daily, spending hours making sure everything he put out was well written and contained only facts.
Brad soon dedicated all of his time to the website, and after working on his formula of scaling, he applied it to even more team-based publications. Between 2014 and 2018, he created three more: Dolphin Nation, Cavaliers Nation, and Lakers Daily. This was when Brad noticed a slow but steady increase in business. With continued hard work, he scaled the businesses, though eventually hired a team to help him cover all areas.
The hiring process was a thorough one; Brad wanted to ensure he had nothing but experts surrounding him. Soon enough, he had carefully hand-selected multiple writers, editors, managers, and reporters with backgrounds in sports journalism to join the team. They can be found worldwide, though Brad has a core team in Los Angeles with him.
Since his team’s creation, Brad has seen an incredible increase in the impressions each publication receives. Dedicating resources to curating a professional and hardworking staff has become one of his tenets, and he stresses the importance of it to other entrepreneurs. It also strengthens the infrastructure of one’s company, which only makes things run smoother.
In 2019, Brad created his newest publication, Ahn Fire Digital. Unlike the others, which are based on a single team apiece, this one covers every single team in the NFL and NBA. Now that they covered 62 teams, their popularity grew significantly, and monthly page views doubled to 10 million within a year. Their goal for this time next year is to scale that number further to 100 million, and at the rate, they’re going, that may just become a reality.
Brad’s secret to success is knowing the audience better than they know themselves, and he and his team do so by researching what content gets the best impressions. This then allows them to create exactly what people want to see, which is a win-win for everyone. As of right now, most of their followers are found in the United States, though there’s also a large following in the Philippines.
For the future, Brad’s working toward growing Ahn Fire Digital to be a household name, like fellow sports publication Bleacher Report. And if Brad and his team continue on the track they’ve been on, then it’s clear that dream will become a reality in no time.