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Stephen Moore

Stephen Moore

4 months ago

Adam Neumanns is working to create the future of living in a classic example of a guy failing upward.

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Tim Denning

Tim Denning

10 days ago

One of the biggest publishers in the world offered me a book deal, but I don't feel deserving of it.

Image Credit: Pixelstalk Creative Commons

My ego is so huge it won't fit through the door.

I don't know how I feel about it. I should be excited. Many of you have this exact dream to publish a book with a well-known book publisher and get a juicy advance.

Let me dissect how I'm thinking about it to help you.

How it happened

An email comes in. A generic "can we put a backlink on your website and get a freebie" email.

Almost deleted it.

Then I noticed the logo. It seemed shady. I found the URL. Check. I searched the employee's LinkedIn. Legit. I avoided middlemen. Check.

Mixed feelings. LinkedIn hasn't valued my writing for years. I'm just a guy in an unironed t-shirt whose content they sell advertising against.

They get big dollars. I get $0 and a few likes, plus some email subscribers.

Still, I felt adrenaline for hours.

I texted a few friends to see how they felt. I wrapped them.

Messages like "No shocker. You're entertaining online." I didn't like praises, so I blushed.

The thrill faded after hours. Who knows?

Most authors desire this chance.

"You entitled piece of crap, Denning!"

You may think so. Okay. My job is to stand on the internet and get bananas thrown at me.

I approached writing backwards. More important than a book deal was a social media audience converted to an email list.

Romantic authors think backward. They hope a fantastic book will land them a deal and an audience.

Rarely occurs. So I never pursued it. It's like permission-seeking or the lottery.

Not being a professional writer, I've never written a good book. I post online for fun and to express my opinions.

Writing is therapeutic. I overcome mental illness and rebuilt my life this way. Without blogging, I'd be dead.

I've always dreamed of staying alive and doing something I love, not getting a book contract. Writing is my passion. I'm a winner without a book deal.

Why I was given a book deal

You may assume I received a book contract because of my views or follows. Nope.

They gave me a deal because they like my writing style. I've heard this for eight years.

Several authors agree. One asked me to improve their writer's voice.

Takeaway: highlight your writer's voice.

What if they discover I'm writing incompetently?

An edited book is published. It's edited.

I need to master writing mechanics, thus this concerns me. I need help with commas and sentence construction.

I must learn verb, noun, and adjective. Seriously.

Writing a book may reveal my imposter status to a famous publisher. Imagine the email

"It happened again. He doesn't even know how to spell. He thinks 'less' is the correct word, not 'fewer.' Are you sure we should publish his book?"

Fears stink.

Photo by Nathalia Segato on Unsplash

I'm capable of blogging. Even listicles. So what?

Writing for a major publisher feels advanced.

I only blog. I'm good at listicles. Digital media executives have criticized me for this.

  • It is allegedly clickbait.

  • Or it is following trends.

  • Alternately, growth hacking.

Never. I learned copywriting to improve my writing.

Apple, Amazon, and Tesla utilize copywriting to woo customers. Whoever thinks otherwise is the wisest person in the room.

Old-schoolers loathe copywriters.

Their novels sell nothing.

They assume their elitist version of writing is better and that the TikTok generation will invest time in random writing with no subheadings and massive walls of text they can't read on their phones.

I'm terrified of book proposals.

My friend's book proposal suggestion was contradictory and made no sense.

They told him to compose another genre. This book got three Amazon reviews. Is that a good model?

The process disappointed him. I've heard other book proposal horror stories. Tim Ferriss' book "The 4-Hour Workweek" was criticized.

Because he has thick skin, his book came out. He wouldn't be known without that.

I hate book proposals.

An ongoing commitment

Writing a book is time-consuming.

I appreciate time most. I want to focus on my daughter for the next few years. I can't recreate her childhood because of a book.

No idea how parents balance kids' goals.

My silly face in a bookstore. Really?

Genuine thought.

I don't want my face in bookstores. I fear fame. I prefer anonymity.

I want to purchase a property in a bad Australian area, then piss off and play drums. Is bookselling worth it?

Are there even bookstores anymore?

(Except for Ryan Holiday's legendary Painted Porch Bookshop in Texas.)

What's most important about books

Many were duped.

Tweets and TikTok hopscotch vids are their future. Short-form content creates devoted audiences that buy newsletter subscriptions.

Books=depth.

Depth wins (if you can get people to buy your book). Creating a book will strengthen my reader relationships.

It's cheaper than my classes, so more people can benefit from my life lessons.

A deeper justification for writing a book

Mind wandered.

If I write this book, my daughter will follow it. "Look what you can do, love, when you ignore critics."

That's my favorite.

I'll be her best leader and teacher. If her dad can accomplish this, she can too.

My kid can read my book when I'm gone to remember her loving father.

Last paragraph made me cry.

The positive

This book thing might make me sound like Karen.

The upside is... Building in public, like I have with online writing, attracts the right people.

Proof-of-work over proposals, beautiful words, or huge aspirations. If you want a book deal, try writing online instead of the old manner.

Next steps

No idea.

I'm a rural Aussie. Writing a book in the big city is intimidating. Will I do it? Lots to think about. Right now, some level of reflection and gratitude feels most appropriate.

Sometimes when you don't feel worthy, it gives you the greatest lessons. That's how I feel about getting offered this book deal.

Perhaps you can relate.

Matthew O'Riordan

Matthew O'Riordan

4 months ago

Trends in SaaS Funding from 2016 to 2022

Christopher Janz of Point Nine Capital created the SaaS napkin in 2016. This post shows how founders have raised cash in the last 6 years. View raw data.

Round size

Unsurprisingly, round sizes have expanded and will taper down in 2022. In 2016, pre-seed rounds were $200k to $500k; currently, they're $1-$2m. Despite the macroeconomic scenario, Series A have expanded from $3m to $12m in 2016 to $6m and $18m in 2022.

Generated from raw data for Seed to Series B from 2016–2022

Valuation

There are hints that valuations are rebounding this year. Pre-seed valuations in 2022 are $12m from $3m in 2016, and Series B prices are $270m from $100m in 2016.

Generated from raw data for Seed to Series B from 2016–2022

Compared to public SaaS multiples, Series B valuations more closely reflect the market, but Seed and Series A prices seem to be inflated regardless of the market.

Source: CapitalIQ as of 13-May-2022

I'd like to know how each annual cohort performed for investors, based on the year they invested and the valuations. I can't access this information.

ARR

Seed firms' ARR forecasts have risen from $0 to $0.6m to $0 to $1m. 2016 expected $1.2m to $3m, 2021 $0.5m to $4m, and this year $0.5m to $2.5m, suggesting that Series A firms may raise with less ARR today. Series B minutes fell from $4.2m to $3m.

Generated from raw data for Seed to Series B from 2016–2022

Capitalization Rate

2022 is the year that VCs start discussing capital efficiency in portfolio meetings. Given the economic shift in the markets and the stealthy VC meltdown, it's not surprising. Christopher Janz added capital efficiency to the SaaS Napkin as a new statistic for Series A (3.5x) and Series B. (2.5x). Your investors must live under a rock if they haven't asked about capital efficiency. If you're unsure:

The Capital Efficiency Ratio is the ratio of how much a company has spent growing revenue and how much they’re receiving in return. It is the broadest measure of company effectiveness in generating ARR

What next?

No one knows what's next, including me. All startup and growing enterprises around me are tightening their belts and extending their runways in anticipation of a difficult fundraising ride. If you're wanting to raise money but can wait, wait till the market is more stable and access to money is easier.

MAJESTY AliNICOLE WOW!

MAJESTY AliNICOLE WOW!

28 days ago

YouTube's faceless videos are growing in popularity, but this is nothing new.

I've always bucked social media norms. YouTube doesn't compare. Traditional video made me zig when everyone zagged. Audio, picture personality animation, thought movies, and slide show videos are most popular and profitable.

Photo by Rachit Tank on Unsplash

YouTube's business is shifting. While most video experts swear by the idea that YouTube success is all about making personal and professional Face-Share-Videos, those who use YouTube for business know things are different.

In this article, I will share concepts from my mini master class Figures to Followers: Prioritizing Purposeful Profits Over Popularity on YouTube to Create the Win-Win for You, Your Audience & More and my forthcoming publication The WOWTUBE-PRENEUR FACTOR EVOLUTION: The Basics of Powerfully & Profitably Positioning Yourself as a Video Communications Authority to Broadcast Your WOW Effect as a Video Entrepreneur.

I've researched the psychology, anthropology, and anatomy of significant social media platforms as an entrepreneur and social media marketing expert. While building my YouTube empire, I've paid particular attention to what works for short, mid, and long-term success, whether it's a niche-focused, lifestyle, or multi-interest channel.

Most new, semi-new, and seasoned YouTubers feel vlog-style or live-on-camera videos are popular. Faceless, animated, music-text-based, and slideshow videos do well for businesses.

Buyer-consumer vs. content-consumer thinking is totally different when absorbing content. Profitability and popularity are closely related, however most people become popular with traditional means but not profitable.

In my experience, Faceless videos are more profitable, although it depends on the channel's style. Several professionals are now teaching in their courses that non-traditional films are making the difference in their business success and popularity.

Face-Share-Personal-Touch videos make audiences feel like they know the personality, but they're not profitable.

Most spend hours creating articles, videos, and thumbnails to seem good. That's how most YouTubers gained their success in the past, but not anymore.

Looking the part and performing a typical role in videos doesn't convert well, especially for newbie channels.

Working with video marketers and YouTubers for years, I've noticed that most struggle to be consistent with content publishing since they exclusively use formats that need extensive development. Camera and green screen set ups, shooting/filming, and editing for post productions require their time, making it less appealing to post consistently, especially if they're doing all the work themselves.

Because they won't make simple format videos or audio videos with an overlay image, they overcomplicate the procedure (even with YouTube Shorts), and they leave their channels for weeks or months. Again, they believe YouTube only allows specific types of videos. Even though this procedure isn't working, they plan to keep at it.

Photo by Nubelson Fernandes on Unsplash

A successful YouTube channel needs multiple video formats to suit viewer needs, I teach. Face-Share-Personal Touch and Faceless videos are both useful.

How people engage with YouTube content has changed over the years, and the average customer is no longer interested in an all-video channel.

Face-Share-Personal-Touch videos are great

  • Google Live

  • Online training

  • Giving listeners a different way to access your podcast that is being broadcast on sites like Anchor, BlogTalkRadio, Spreaker, Google, Apple Store, and others Many people enjoy using a video camera to record themselves while performing the internet radio, Facebook, or Instagram Live versions of their podcasts.

  • Video Blog Updates

  • even more

Faceless videos are popular for business and benefit both entrepreneurs and audiences.

For the business owner/entrepreneur…

  • Less production time results in time dollar savings.

  • enables the business owner to demonstrate the diversity of content development

For the Audience…

  • The channel offers a variety of appealing content options.

  • The same format is not monotonous or overly repetitive for the viewers.

Below are a couple videos from YouTube guru Make Money Matt's channel, which has over 347K subscribers.

Enjoy

24 Best Niches to Make Money on YouTube Without Showing Your Face

Make Money on YouTube Without Making Videos (Free Course)

In conclusion, you have everything it takes to build your own YouTube brand and empire. Learn the rules, then adapt them to succeed.

Please reread this and the other suggested articles for optimal benefit.

I hope this helped. How has this article helped you? Follow me for more articles like this and more multi-mission expressions.

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Jonathan Vanian

Jonathan Vanian

1 year ago

What is Terra? Your guide to the hot cryptocurrency

With cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ether, and Dogecoin gyrating in value over the past few months, many people are looking at so-called stablecoins like Terra to invest in because of their more predictable prices.

Terraform Labs, which oversees the Terra cryptocurrency project, has benefited from its rising popularity. The company said recently that investors like Arrington Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Pantera Capital have pledged $150 million to help it incubate various crypto projects that are connected to Terra.

Terraform Labs and its partners have built apps that operate on the company’s blockchain technology that helps keep a permanent and shared record of the firm’s crypto-related financial transactions.

Here’s what you need to know about Terra and the company behind it.

What is Terra?

Terra is a blockchain project developed by Terraform Labs that powers the startup’s cryptocurrencies and financial apps. These cryptocurrencies include the Terra U.S. Dollar, or UST, that is pegged to the U.S. dollar through an algorithm.

Terra is a stablecoin that is intended to reduce the volatility endemic to cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Some stablecoins, like Tether, are pegged to more conventional currencies, like the U.S. dollar, through cash and cash equivalents as opposed to an algorithm and associated reserve token.

To mint new UST tokens, a percentage of another digital token and reserve asset, Luna, is “burned.” If the demand for UST rises with more people using the currency, more Luna will be automatically burned and diverted to a community pool. That balancing act is supposed to help stabilize the price, to a degree.

“Luna directly benefits from the economic growth of the Terra economy, and it suffers from contractions of the Terra coin,” Terraform Labs CEO Do Kwon said.

Each time someone buys something—like an ice cream—using UST, that transaction generates a fee, similar to a credit card transaction. That fee is then distributed to people who own Luna tokens, similar to a stock dividend.

Who leads Terra?

The South Korean firm Terraform Labs was founded in 2018 by Daniel Shin and Kwon, who is now the company’s CEO. Kwon is a 29-year-old former Microsoft employee; Shin now heads the Chai online payment service, a Terra partner. Kwon said many Koreans have used the Chai service to buy goods like movie tickets using Terra cryptocurrency.

Terraform Labs does not make money from transactions using its crypto and instead relies on outside funding to operate, Kwon said. It has raised $57 million in funding from investors like HashKey Digital Asset Group, Divergence Digital Currency Fund, and Huobi Capital, according to deal-tracking service PitchBook. The amount raised is in addition to the latest $150 million funding commitment announced on July 16.

What are Terra’s plans?

Terraform Labs plans to use Terra’s blockchain and its associated cryptocurrencies—including one pegged to the Korean won—to create a digital financial system independent of major banks and fintech-app makers. So far, its main source of growth has been in Korea, where people have bought goods at stores, like coffee, using the Chai payment app that’s built on Terra’s blockchain. Kwon said the company’s associated Mirror trading app is experiencing growth in China and Thailand.

Meanwhile, Kwon said Terraform Labs would use its latest $150 million in funding to invest in groups that build financial apps on Terra’s blockchain. He likened the scouting and investing in other groups as akin to a “Y Combinator demo day type of situation,” a reference to the popular startup pitch event organized by early-stage investor Y Combinator.

The combination of all these Terra-specific financial apps shows that Terraform Labs is “almost creating a kind of bank,” said Ryan Watkins, a senior research analyst at cryptocurrency consultancy Messari.

In addition to cryptocurrencies, Terraform Labs has a number of other projects including the Anchor app, a high-yield savings account for holders of the group’s digital coins. Meanwhile, people can use the firm’s associated Mirror app to create synthetic financial assets that mimic more conventional ones, like “tokenized” representations of corporate stocks. These synthetic assets are supposed to be helpful to people like “a small retail trader in Thailand” who can more easily buy shares and “get some exposure to the upside” of stocks that they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to obtain, Kwon said. But some critics have said the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission may eventually crack down on synthetic stocks, which are currently unregulated.

What do critics say?

Terra still has a long way to go to catch up to bigger cryptocurrency projects like Ethereum.

Most financial transactions involving Terra-related cryptocurrencies have originated in Korea, where its founders are based. Although Terra is becoming more popular in Korea thanks to rising interest in its partner Chai, it’s too early to say whether Terra-related currencies will gain traction in other countries.

Terra’s blockchain runs on a “limited number of nodes,” said Messari’s Watkins, referring to the computers that help keep the system running. That helps reduce latency that may otherwise slow processing of financial transactions, he said.

But the tradeoff is that Terra is less “decentralized” than other blockchain platforms like Ethereum, which is powered by thousands of interconnected computing nodes worldwide. That could make Terra less appealing to some blockchain purists.

Nojus Tumenas

Nojus Tumenas

4 months ago

NASA: Strange Betelgeuse Explosion Just Took Place

Orion's red supergiant Betelgeuse erupted. This is astronomers' most magnificent occurrence.

Betelgeuse, a supergiant star in Orion, garnered attention in 2019 for its peculiar appearance. It continued to dim in 2020.

The star was previously thought to explode as a supernova. Studying the event has revealed what happened to Betelgeuse since it happened.

Astronomers saw that the star released a large amount of material, causing it to lose a section of its surface.

They have never seen anything like this and are unsure what caused the star to release so much material.

According to Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics astrophysicist Andrea Dupre, astronomers' data reveals an unexplained mystery.

They say it's a new technique to examine star evolution. The James Webb telescope revealed the star's surface features.

Corona flares are stellar mass ejections. These eruptions change the Sun's outer atmosphere.

This could affect power grids and satellite communications if it hits Earth.

Betelgeuse's flare ejected four times more material than the Sun's corona flare.

Astronomers have monitored star rhythms for 50 years. They've seen its dimming and brightening cycle start, stop, and repeat.

Monitoring Betelgeuse's pulse revealed the eruption's power.

Dupre believes the star's convection cells are still amplifying the blast's effects, comparing it to an imbalanced washing machine tub.

The star's outer layer has returned to normal, Hubble data shows. The photosphere slowly rebuilds its springy surface.

Dupre noted the star's unusual behavior. For instance, it’s causing its interior to bounce.

This suggests that the mass ejections that caused the star's surface to lose mass were two separate processes.

Researchers hope to better understand star mass ejection with the James Webb Space Telescope.

Entreprogrammer

Entreprogrammer

2 months ago

The Steve Jobs Formula: A Guide to Everything

A must-read for everyone

Photo by AB on Unsplash

Jobs is well-known. You probably know the tall, thin guy who wore the same clothing every day. His influence is unavoidable. In fewer than 40 years, Jobs' innovations have impacted computers, movies, cellphones, music, and communication.

Steve Jobs may be more imaginative than the typical person, but if we can use some of his ingenuity, ambition, and good traits, we'll be successful. This essay explains how to follow his guidance and success secrets.

1. Repetition is necessary for success.

Be patient and diligent to master something. Practice makes perfect. This is why older workers are often more skilled.

When should you repeat a task? When you're confident and excited to share your product. It's when to stop tweaking and repeating.

Jobs stated he'd make the crowd sh** their pants with an iChat demo.

Use this in your daily life.

  • Start with the end in mind. You can put it in writing and be as detailed as you like with your plan's schedule and metrics. For instance, you have a goal of selling three coffee makers in a week.

  • Break it down, break the goal down into particular tasks you must complete, and then repeat those tasks. To sell your coffee maker, you might need to make 50 phone calls.

  • Be mindful of the amount of work necessary to produce the desired results. Continue doing this until you are happy with your product.

2. Acquire the ability to add and subtract.

How did Picasso invent cubism? Pablo Picasso was influenced by stylised, non-naturalistic African masks that depict a human figure.

Artists create. Constantly seeking inspiration. They think creatively about random objects. Jobs said creativity is linking things. Creative people feel terrible when asked how they achieved something unique because they didn't do it all. They saw innovation. They had mastered connecting and synthesizing experiences.

Use this in your daily life.

  • On your phone, there is a note-taking app. Ideas for what you desire to learn should be written down. It may be learning a new language, calligraphy, or anything else that inspires or intrigues you.

  • Note any ideas you have, quotations, or any information that strikes you as important.

  • Spend time with smart individuals, that is the most important thing. Jim Rohn, a well-known motivational speaker, has observed that we are the average of the five people with whom we spend the most time.

  • Learning alone won't get you very far. You need to put what you've learnt into practice. If you don't use your knowledge and skills, they are useless.

3. Develop the ability to refuse.

Steve Jobs deleted thousands of items when he created Apple's design ethic. Saying no to distractions meant upsetting customers and partners.

John Sculley, the former CEO of Apple, said something like this. According to Sculley, Steve’s methodology differs from others as he always believed that the most critical decisions are things you choose not to do.

Use this in your daily life.

  • Never be afraid to say "no," "I won't," or "I don't want to." Keep it simple. This method works well in some situations.

  • Give a different option. For instance, X might be interested even if I won't be able to achieve it.

  • Control your top priority. Before saying yes to anything, make sure your work schedule and priority list are up to date.

4. Follow your passion

“Follow your passion” is the worst advice people can give you. Steve Jobs didn't start Apple because he suddenly loved computers. He wanted to help others attain their maximum potential.

Great things take a lot of work, so quitting makes sense if you're not passionate. Jobs learned from history that successful people were passionate about their work and persisted through challenges.

Use this in your daily life.

  • Stay away from your passion. Allow it to develop daily. Keep working at your 9-5-hour job while carefully gauging your level of desire and endurance. Less risk exists.

  • The truth is that if you decide to work on a project by yourself rather than in a group, it will take you years to complete it instead of a week. Instead, network with others who have interests in common.

  • Prepare a fallback strategy in case things go wrong.

Success, this small two-syllable word eventually gives your life meaning, a perspective. What is success?  For most, it's achieving their ambitions. However, there's a catch. Successful people aren't always happy.

Furthermore, where do people’s goals and achievements end? It’s a never-ending process. Success is a journey, not a destination. We wish you not to lose your way on this journey.