If you see 6’8″ John Hayward-Mayhew walking around the CSUN campus, at first glance you may assume he plays basketball, well you’re right, but what you might not know is that the CSUN men’s basketball junior forward also has a well-known blog.
His site, JohnsiPhone.com launched September 2010, where he gives tutorials, news, giveaways and tips about the latest Apple products.
“I’ve always been into websites since high school and I realized if you find a trendy topic, it will attract more people to your website,” Hayward-Mayhew said. “I had an iPhone and I always liked Apple products, so I opened an iPhone blog.”
When you enter his site, you see his banner and tabs to each Apple product.
When he first began, he posted news daily and began to have followers. His YouTube channel of the same name, where he posts his tutorials and tips, received a lot of views as did his blog.
Shortly after, he was receiving e-mails from people who wanted to write and make videos for his blog.
“At first, I was thinking no because I wanted it to just be my site, but I realized that if I wanted it to be a big website that is producing consistently, it would be better if I had a team,” said Hayward-Mayhew, who recently launched JohnsAndroid.com. “I then started YouTube teams that have my logo branded on their channels and got a few writers.”
Even though he has writers and people posting videos for him, Hayward-Mayhew still makes sure he is a part of the site by making his own videos and posting news whenever possible.
Finding the time to contribute to the site, balance his full-time school schedule and playing collegiate basketball has not been much of a challenge for him.
“It’s funny, I started the site right when school started instead of in the summer, but I have been able to manage it somehow,” Hayward-Mayhew said. “Whenever I have down time I can work on it.”
Hayward-Mayhew receives e-mails from his contributors and edits the stories, then posts them himself. He does have one contributor who is able to directly post on JohnsiPhone.
Greg Kitchens has worked with Hayward-Mayhew shortly after the site opened. He was first introduced to JohnsiPhone.com when his iPod was not working properly and YouTubed a ‘how to’ and Hayward-Mayhew’s video was one of the first listed. Kitchens then contacted him.
“I started to e-mail him and we started to talk,” Kitchens said. “I was starting my own blog at the time and asked him for some tips about blogging, that’s when he asked me if I wanted to write for him.”
Kitchens said he was drawn to the site’s non-corporate look and its simplicity.
“John makes it fun so it definitely stands apart from the other sites that are similar to his and that is why I wanted to be a part of it,” Kitchens said. “John is also down to earth and connects with his readers and followers.
He keeps his site simple where an 8-year-old can do it and he hardly ever misses a step in his videos that help people with their Apple products,” Kitchens said.
Matador teammate Thomas Jacobs learned of Hayward-Mayhew’s site when the team was on the road.
“At first I was skeptical about JohnsiPhone,” Jacobs said. “But I went home and started looking at it and seen everything he (John) was talking about was valid and it kept on building. Now whenever a new post comes out, I’m one of the first to read it.”
Jacobs said anyone can visit the site and be interested in all the information, even if they don’t own an Apple product like himself.
“The thing about JohnsiPhone is, even though it’s JohnsiPhone, it’s more than that,” Jacobs said. “It isn’t strictly about iPhones. Even if you don’t have an iPhone, there is something you can relate to.”
One of Hayward-Mayhew’s most asked questions is how he gets all the Apple products while being a young college student. The answer is he goes to free sites such as freebiejeebies.com and completes special offers, getting referrals to the free site. He even explains it on his site http://johnsiphone.com/freebies.
“I started looking at that before I even did my site and I always thought that they were scams too, but I started to use them and they work,” he said. “NBC and other news stations talk about them and all you have to do is complete an offer to receive your free gift you want.”
The future for Hayward-Mayhew isn’t set in stone, but he does know he doesn’t want to work for someone else and said he hopes to have a few more sites open before he finishes college.
“I never really wanted to work for somebody and that’s how I grew up. I never had the mindset of working for someone,” Hayward-Mayhew said.
Jacobs said Hayward–Mayhew is on his way to being successful in the business world and Jacobs feeds off of what he can learn from his teammate.
“The difference between John and I is that I talk about it while he’s actually putting it in to act,” Jacobs said.
Even though JohnsiPhone has expanded to more than a hobby for Hayward-Mayhew, his priority right now is school and basketball. He said he would like to continue playing after school and possibly go to Europe and play for a league.
Hayward-Mayhew lived in Europe when he was a child while his father played there professionally.
“I would love to play overseas and explore that part of the world,” Hayward-Mayhew said.
For now, the economics major wants to finish school, play ball and continue opening sites.
“I can’t run them all and that’s what I am looking for right now, people I can trust to write and I can expand on sites while they run it for me,” Hayward-Mayhew said.