TEI Talks - 3 - Examples of the Form-rqznrxtzfXg
7:04PM Oct 1, 2020
Welcome to this ti talk. The music that those of you that are on the live stream heard was Japanese hip hop. Those that are watching later are not going to see that intro because I chopped that out for the edited published version of this video. But those are watching later and have never heard Japanese hip hop can check out a group called MSC Mike Sierra Charlie has not what it stands for. But that's the phonetic spelling MSC. Japanese hip hop is so fascinating to me. I just like how it sounds. But I came across a Wikipedia article section that explains I think something else about why it's so fascinating to me. And I'm going to read that to you. Because I think it sets a nice context for what we're going to talk about today in the CEI talk. This is from Wikipedia. Again, the Wikipedia entry I'm reading from is called Japanese hip hop and there's a section called language. Initially, language was a barrier for hip hop in Japan. wrappers only wrapped in English, because it was believed that the differences between English and Japanese would make it impossible to wrap in Japanese. Unlike English, the Japanese language and phrases in auxiliary verbs, whereas English ends in verbs or nouns, which are extremely common, Japanese rappers were limited by the small number of grammatically correct possibilities for ending a phrase. Japanese also lacks the stresses on certain syllables that provide flow to English rapping. Even traditional Japanese poetry was based on the numbers of syllables present, unlike English poetry, which is based on the stresses in a line. Most Japanese lyrical music was also formulated using textual repetition, not relying on the flow of the words. So let's see here, I think I need to skip ahead a little bit to keep this reasonably interesting. So I'm skipping a sentence or two slowly, the increase in popularity of rap in Japan, more rappers began using Japanese rappers added stress syllables to their music, altering the natural flow of the language to fit into traditional hip hop. American injections are also used in raps to help the flow of music and often homonyms were placed in raps, which appeal to both global English speaking audience, me and to Japanese speakers who would often understand the double meanings intended. So I think that's enough that you that you get the point. What I find so interesting about Japanese hip hop is the way they altered the language to make it both fit the genre, and I think to be an extension of the genre. So, again, I think it's a super fascinating thing. And I think we find ourselves. When we embrace this challenge of publishing to an email list daily, I think we find ourselves adapting what's natural to us in a similar way. For those who are just joining, maybe you haven't seen any of the previous tea, I talked, we were talking about a framework for cultivating expertise I call the expertise incubator, and we're talking about the first of the three challenges that form this framework. And this first challenge is the daily publication challenge. As I was preparing for this talk, I realized I have a like a huge assumption, a sort of elephant in the room kind of assumption, which is that I am speaking to current or soon to be fellow practitioners. So the, you know, these talks, this content is different than what might be more conventional or traditional educational content in that I assume, you're going to try this stuff. And so I'm if we think of a sort of circle of completion. Part of the circle is what I'm saying here. And part of it is you learning and applying this stuff on your own, which I desperately hope you will do.
Daily emailing is a sort of genre of its own. It's a sort of package of expectations that we have about how it works. It's it contains some norms. And it's, you know, functions like genre just like in music, hip hop or heavy metal or classical music or folk or country or Whatever, all those genres, you just say the word, and the word is a sort of handle that attaches to a bundle of expectations and memories and, you know, rules, I guess if you want to make them rules, norms, certainly. And genres work that way, they bundle up and package up all those things into a word. And to an extent, daily emailing is a genre. But most genres, as I hope you've seen, if you have listened to Japanese hip hop have quite a bit of range in them. So there are certainly sub genres within any genre, but there's a lot of range. And just like it's sort of hard to describe a visual art genre like impressionistic painting, with just the word, as soon as you see a few examples of it, you start to understand it in a different way. And that's why I have this lecture today, in this talk series, is I want you to see some examples, you're not going to actually, I'm already sort of over promising or overselling a little bit, I'm not going to show you examples, I'm going to talk about examples. And then like I said earlier, I assume I'm talking to people who are going to take action on this stuff. And so I assume that you will go out and subscribe to some email lists that I walked through today, other people's email lists and see what they are doing with your own eyes. Think about it with your own brain, and come to your own conclusions about it. But by doing that, by actually checking it out and seeing what's going on with the with what these other folks are doing, you're going to get a sense of how this genre of daily emailing can work. And I think you'll be better positioned to try it for yourself. So I'm going to give some examples, 10 of them. Most of these people, I think more than half who I'll use as examples, I don't know them. Personally, some of them I do know, personally. And I want to point out that I want to cast light on what they're doing. I want to provide a little bit of what I think would be analysis of what they're doing. But I'm not actually trying to critique what they're doing and say this is good. This is not because there's so many contexts out there. There's so many places where a daily email can land in an inbox in a particular context and create value or not for those readers. And so I think what you'll see as we go through these examples today is quite a bit of range. And again, I'm not trying to critique what anyone is doing. The order in which I go through these examples is not a rank, or it's not ordered by quality, it's not even ordered by alphabetically, I'm going to try to group these together by sub genre. Again, this is a place where experiential learning makes this whole thing better. I hope you enjoy this, this lecture. But I hope more than that, you go out, subscribed to some folks, email lists and see what they're doing for yourself so that you can learn from it and see what fits for you. What might be inspiring for you, so forth. Our first example, is a friend of mine, Jonathan Stark.
So I know Jonathan, personally, he's a friend. And so I have, in a way, a harder time, like telling you about what he's doing, because I'm working to be objective here. But also, I have a great affection for what he's doing. He's done tremendous stuff, really good stuff with daily emailing. So for each of these examples, I want to talk about what I'll call the mechanicals of what they're doing. And then I want to talk about the poetry of what they're doing. And then I want to comment on how I think this might help create reader value for their their readers. That's where I get really speculative because I don't know for sure. I don't know for sure what creates value for Jonathan's readers. They're not my readers. I mean, there's some overlap between our email lists, but you know, his readers are his readers and and only he's in a position to even partially know what creates value for them. So you can sign up for Jonathan's email list at Jonathan Stark calm. He's emailing seven days a week though he Really emailing daily, like every time a day happens, he sends an email. And there's seven of those a week. And so he sends seven days a week. And in conversations with him, he's mentioned to me that, that is just simply the easiest way to build a habit for him. That may not be the perfect way of phrasing what he said. But it is simply the easiest way to build a habit for him. And that means that like, one of the things you'll you'll notice, if you kind of pay attention to Jonathan over time, is that he doesn't like to have a big kind of firewall, between personal life and work. And so, you know, I think Jonathan's experience must be like, it's a day, there's seven of them a week, on this day, I'll do some work. And I'll do some personal stuff. And they may kind of mix together a little bit. And so I think that makes it sets up a condition where him emailing seven days a week just makes a lot of sense for him. But in talking to him about it, he's primarily linked that to habit formation. what he's doing on his email list supports his mission, which is a bold, ambitious, awesome mission to rid the world of hourly billing. In terms of how he publishes, I last time I checked, it's been a little while, I don't see his emails archived anywhere online. And so he's appears to be publishing, exclusively to his email list. So if you want to see what he's writing, then that's the main that would, that's not just the main, that's the only way that you would get to see that is joining the email list. And now the poetry of what Jonathan's doing, his mission is big and ambitious and sweeping. And I love that. So he might be one of our best examples today of what I've previously referred to as sort of being like a woodpecker and pecking away at something really much bigger than yourself. And feeling like each time you send an email each time you think about this question, or this topic or this area that you're exploring, you're not making a huge, massive dent in it, you're making a little tiny impact in it the way it would peckerwood. But you trust that over time, as you Peck away at it, the progress will be more substantial, and the impact will be larger and more significant. So Jonathan, I think is a good example. He has a large sweeping mission on a large topic, which is how do you price services? How do you understand value? And how do you kind of bring those changed ways of seeing and doing things into your daily life? The big thing, it's a big topic he's tackling, and he's pecking away at it one email at a time, seven emails a week, however many is a year, just, you know, kind of pecking away at it. And I think that's one of the things you'll see is emails are short, very few of them are ever attempting to sort of in one fell swoop, execute the kind of change that Jonathan is focused on, or, you know, demolish an old way of seeing things and try to replace it with a new way of seeing things. None of that none of what he does feels like he's trying to do it all at once. The range of what he's doing in his emails, in terms of the content goes from explaining things, to attempting to provoke.
He has a wonderful point of view that is expressed in every single email in some way, it infuses and permeate every single email. And that point of view is that hourly billing is nuts, meaning crazy, strong point of view, it forms a great headline, there's a lot of nuance behind it. And this point of view just shows up in like almost everything. Now Jonathan does explore topics that are related to pricing and value, because that supports its mission. I think he creates reader value. Remember, there's sort of three buckets of reader value, one is creating more effective action. One is changing your mental state of your readers and one is changing their emotional state. And I what I see when I look at Jonathan's emailing is that he seems to be focusing on the first two. How do we help folks take more effective action, specifically with respect to how they price Their services and how they use those services to create value for their clients. And then second is a sort of changed mental state, it's a sort of different way of seeing the world. So again, I know Jonathan personally, and he's shared with me that daily publication has been for him a really transformative practice, and led to advancements in his point of view. And what we might think of is innovative content is a great example to learn from,
to refer to Seth Godin, as the grandfather of publishing something daily online. I mean, it can't be that he's the first person to ever do that. But he's so associated, if you know anything about him, or have come across him with this idea of working to create a little bit of value for as many people as possible every day. That's what he I mean, I don't know Seth, personally. So I have him guessing a bit here. But that seems to be what he is seeking to do with his blog. Mechanically, he's publishing seven days a week. And I think the function mechanically of what he's doing was publication is trying to support people out in the world who are trying to make some kind of impact on the culture, or a niche in the culture, more likely. Seth has said on numerous interviews numerous times, something something something, I won the internet lottery, I think that's code for the more crass version would be I have fuck you money. Or more simply, I just don't really need to work, I could probably live for the rest of my life on the money I have. I suspect that is what he is saying when he says like when the internet lottery, maybe he means something different. But that puts him in a really interesting position where the function of what he's doing with marketing can be to do you know, his vision of maximum reader value, without feeling like he needs to create a ton of monetary value for himself. Now, he's still in the game of business and selling things and making money. But I think that's important, too. While again, I'm not sure about my facts here. But I think it's important to recognize that, you know, the position he's operating from is a bit different than most of us. He uses Seth Godin uses mechanically a blog, first publication approach. So what that means is that he's publishing to a blog. And then sort of echoing in an automated way, what shows up on the blog to an email list, I think he uses Feedburner, or one of those similar services that just looks for new article to appear in the RSS feed, and then sends it out to an email list. So also, kind of under the umbrella of what he's doing mechanically, he's using his fairly large audience. I mean, quite large. I don't know how large exactly, but I think it's safe to assume it is a very large audience a lot of reach. And he's publishing to a blog. And then anytime there's something for him to sell through the sort of workshop arm of his business, which is called a Kimbo. Then you'll see him mentioned, hey, we've got a new workshop opening up, you'll mention that a few times on the blog. And that will sort of point you over to a like a physically separate site, where in all the workshops are listed. And then if you sign up with any kind of interest in one of those workshops, you start getting a lot more emails from him, which are more of a direct response style of email. So it's really interesting, to me anyway, to look at what Seth Godin is doing and seeing as a sort of, kind of a brand marketing approach on his blog and email list, and then a more direct response marketing approach when you get a little closer to a product that he has to sell. Now in terms of the poetry of what Seth Godin is doing, I think it's a great example. His his emails, his content are a great example of brevity. Like he's really good at writing short stuff. Now, there's something I won't say lost. But there's a trade off there, where there's a sort of assumption that you're tuning into the Seth show
on an ongoing basis, and eventually, you'll kind of soak up a contextual understanding of what he's saying, because a lot of times, what he's saying is, it's not very standalone. Or if it is standalone, it feels sort of like reading a poem that you don't quite understand. I liken it to imagining that you commute to work in a car. And your commute takes you past a drive in movie theater, so you can see what's up on the screen. And each time you drive by, you catch a snippet of the same movie, but it's like a little different snippet each time you drive by. And then over time, you can kind of piece together what's going on with this. And I feel like that's sort of what Seth Godin is doing. Although you can also buy one of his books, which is a more comprehensive treatment of whatever the topic is. So he has other ways for you to learn about, and maybe buy into the kind of change he's trying to create. But the email list is, again, it's this kind of woodpecker ring, of just like tap, tap, tap, pecking away at some bigger thing. Seth Godin, in terms of his content is a really good example of the sort of mushroom shape of expertise and authority. So mushrooms can look like a lot of different things. But I think when I say mushroom, most of you are going to think of a, you know, a biological form that has a stock that's kind of thin, and then it has a much broader cap at the top. The more and more a bit example would be the mushroom cloud from a nuclear explosion. But you could just think of the mushrooms that, you know, grow, like everywhere on planet Earth, it seems like and when you know, that shape of the mushroom is indicative of what happens as someone grows in their career and becomes the custodian of a larger and larger audience and starts to be seen as an authority at a certain point, they tend to spread out, they probably start narrow, but at a certain point, they spread out. And they start talking about a much bigger range of things. And that's what you see with Seth Godin is you see him talking about stuff, like more effective meetings, or just simply more effective communication. So very little, if any of what he writes about is like actionable. But a lot of it is about how you see the world or how you relate to other people. Or you can think of it as you know, esoteric, or you could think of it as fundamental mindset stuff. So I think the reader value that Seth Golden's content might create is mostly a changed mental state. I don't see it directly connecting to like, you're going to have improved action tomorrow. At least not most of it. So it's interesting at this point to, again, I know how you haven't seen any obsess emails, maybe, or at least I haven't shown any on the screen here. But I would have to show a lot of them for you to really get a sense of what he's doing because the breath is so so expansive. It's interesting, though, to compare what the approach that somebody like Seth Godin is taking to Jonathan Stark. They're both considered authorities on some topic. But Seth's approach is so much more much. He's just covering a wider range of topics because well, I don't know, I'd have to ask him. But that I think, is what you see going on in his content. So it's a really it's interesting to sort of compare these two Jonathan's approach is much more focused, even though Jonathan's topic and his mission is very ambitious and pretty large scale. Jonathan's using, I think, a more focused approach. So subscribe to both these email lists and see what I'm talking about.
With both of these folks, I think we've encountered our first sub genre which I'll call the world changer, someone who's using their daily emailing to try to change something about the world. And it's not like a tiny, insignificant thing like the import tariffs on something, not that that's necessarily insignificant, but we're not talking quite that focused. We're talking about someone who does want to change the world, but they're still focused to their efforts. And Jonathan's a great example of I don't know what what he would feel like if he woke up tomorrow, and no one used hourly billing, I think there'd be if it was me, there'd be some elation. And then there'd be like, okay, what's the next challenge. But I know for sure that that they're both focused on creating some kind of change out there in the world, among a significant large group of people. So maybe we can think of that as a sub genre, they're using daily emailing to change the world. In the previous tip talk, I spoke about this sort of tension we all face, which is balancing two things. When you publish to an email list, at some level, you need to create reader or subscriber value. Otherwise, folks will eventually decide, hey, it's not worth the time I'm out of here. Maybe the bots that manage to sign up for your email list won't think that but they don't count. The other thing we're trying to balance is creating future expertise value for ourself. And I'm not sure how that worked for Seth Godin. But I know with Jonathan Stark, just the practice of sitting down and finding another way to advance this mission causes him to think more deeply about how to explain it, how it relates to daily life to find interesting and relevant and sometimes entertaining, but at least interesting examples. It drives all that work. And as a result, Jonathan cultivates new sort of point of view content, and new expertise. So even when your your your thoughts about what the reader impact are external facing, and you see yourself as a world changer, it still changes you. Next example, Matt Levine. There's not like an easy web address to point you to what he's doing. So I think if you just Google, Matt Levine, and the word Bloomberg, you'll get where you need to go. And I include Bloomberg there because mechanically, Matt Levine's job is to write a daily week daily column for Bloomberg. So mechanically, Matt is in a whole different category than most folks who will ever listen to this series of talks, and most people who I will ever work with, because we're not I mean, our job is something other than Well, I mean, you could argue Our job is to thinking, and then we find ways to monetize that thinking. But our job is not to write a column for Bloomberg. So from a time perspective, and how he can deploy his energy. Matt Levine has some advantages as a daily email, er that you and I will never be able to replicate. You can consume what he writes through email or through the Bloomberg site. And I'll let you know that if you sign up for the email list, there's not like a prominent opt in for that, but there's, you know, you'll find one somewhere. Then you get around the Bloomberg paywall, and Bloomberg is a publication I've not ever found worth subscribing to. So it's a benefit for me to not have to subscribe to a publication to read one person, sort of like back in the days of CDs, we all hated buying a CD for the one good song on the CD. Same thing kind of here. And another note, Matt Bloomberg, sorry, Matt Levine is on maternity leave right now. So he's not publishing right now because he's on paternity leave. the poetry of what Matt living does is, like astonishing. He is phenomenal
at using humor in a really artful way. Now his job is partially I think, maybe again, this is someone I don't know. Personally, I wrote him once and asked him if he would give a talk to the paid Ti cohort. And he said sorry, No can do. But I don't know him personally. But I imagine he thinks of this job to be somewhat entertaining and somewhat informative. And so he uses humor in a way that creates directly connects with creating insight. And engagement, at least for me, and I can only really speak for myself here. I mean, it does seem to have a lot of fans. But for me, I just don't really care that much about the stuff that Matt Levine writes about. But he finds a way to make it funny. And a lot of times what he's doing is picking up on some of the ridiculous stuff that happens in the world of finance, particularly in the fraud and of this world. And then he's, you know, he's writing about that. And he's poking fun at these idiots and their usage of dumb code words to describe how they're, you know, illegally doing payoffs and stuff like that. So he's, you know, that that kind of stuff always appeals to me the sort of ridiculous and the insane parts of human behavior. So some of it is like his curation of what he's talking about. And some of it is he is just got such a fun, dry sense of humor, and such a good way of sort of integrating that with, with his writing and sort of taking something so it feels like he's talking to you. But it's showing up in writing, like, he's just really artful and subtle and masterful at a lot of this stuff. So for me, the experience as a reader is, I am interested in something that I have otherwise no interest in, he makes it interesting. And it works really well in this format. Now, he's technically an opinion columnist. So for me, he's creating insight, because there's some some world that's kind of opaque to me, I don't really care that much about it. He's making it interesting. So I'm not an expert, because of reading what he does, but I am more informed. And so that's insight to an extent. For people who are like professionals in the world of finance. I don't know what their relationship is. I mean, Bloomberg is sort of a general news outlet with I think, a sort of slant towards the world of business for sure. So I don't know if Blum how Bloomberg thinks of what Matt Levine is doing. Maybe they think of him as like, the clownish guy who's writing you know, light entertainment for their readers, so they have a nice blend of content. Or maybe they see him as doing something different, I don't know. But for me, the experiences, the humor, leads me to something that most people would think of as more significant than just light entertainment. So for me, the reader values have changed mental and emotional state. I'm not taking more effective action based on Matt Levine's content, because I'm not in that world. And I wonder what people in that world do with it, I really don't know. But he's such an interesting person to follow. For those listening live, following him is not like possible right now you can look at the archive, which was written on Bloomberg. But if you sign up to his, the email list version of his column, you're not going to get anything new until presumably he returns from paternity leave.
Our next example is this guy, Kevin hillstrom, who also I do not know, personally. So Kevin is a consultant. He's a second. A Jonathan is sort of a consultant sort of running like me, an audience based business. Kevin is like actually a consultant. That's how he makes his money. And he's a consultant to the retail sector. So he's consulting with, you know, brands that sell clothing and merchandise and that sort of thing the most most. Again, I don't know him personally, I don't know what his business looks like on the inside. But based on what he talks about, he's mostly focused on B to C. Brands business to consumer brands. As website is mine that data.com. And specifically, his expertise is with it is with data analysis for these retail brands. So, you know, he's very, sort of wonky. In that way, when I say wonky, I realized there's a potential double meaning there, like, kind of weird and out there. wonkish, I guess is the other thing more like a, like a pull in politics, a policy wonk. He's very, I guess, maybe the better term is very nerdy about what he does, but also incredibly engaging, even to an outsider, because most of us have enough sort of ambient awareness of what's going on in the world of big retail, that you can relate to what he's talking about, or at least have some kind of, you know, basic understanding of the context in which he's talking about. So even if you're not another data analyst, for a big retail brand, you can still I think, relate at some level to what he's talking about. And one of the things that he does, I'm getting a little bit into the poetry here, is he connects his publications so well, with what's happening in the moment, currently, new developments in the world of retail, how are companies responding to Amazon? How are they attempting to compete with Amazon? What's Amazon doing? You know, what about the bankruptcy of this company? What are the implications, all that stuff, he's always kind of connecting and finding these touch points, to connect to what's going on in the actual world of retail. Let me stick to my format here, we start out with the mechanical aspects of what Kevin's doing. So it's pretty much five days a week that he's emailing. It's a blog first approach. So he's publishing to a blog, and then that's getting echoed out to an email list. And I think also very interestingly, Kevin does a really talking about him on a first name basis, like I know him, Mr. hillstrom, does a really great job of integrating his social media presence, which I think is only on Twitter, with what's happening in his email list. So you will see him if you follow him on Twitter, talking about things, and then turning those into emails or sending an email and then talking about what he mailed on Twitter. And I don't know how that works for him. Again, I'm not in inside his business, I don't know. But as a sort of outsider, it's a really engaging sort of what to compare it to, you know, someone gets up on stage and gives a talk, and then you run into them later in a more casual setting. And you have a more casual conversation about what they spoke about, when they're giving their talk. Maybe it's like that, except it's all digital. It's all on the internet. But still, it's a really nice sort of come when you bring the two together. It is something is really nice about it. the poetry of what Kevin is doing, he comes across as such an expert, he has a strong, clear point of view. He talks about something I don't actually fully understand what he calls the omni channel thesis. So this is to me. It's insider baseball, about what happens in the world of retail, but for him, and I presume his audience, it's a big deal. It's a big idea about how things should be done. And he talks about the omni channel thesis all the time. And his point of view, is that it's a terrible idea was foisted upon the industry by what he calls pundits.
Maybe we consider me a pundit. I don't know. But it's, you know, it's this like terrible idea that was foisted on the industry by pundits and vendors. It doesn't really serve the industry. And so one of the things he does so well, is he champions what he sees as the best interest of his clients. And he sort of out there in this idea battlefield fighting on their behalf. It's really so interesting to watch this you see it a little bit more. What you see that side of what he's doing a little bit more on Twitter than in his emails. But you see it in both.
I think the reader value, I mean, now the thing you see is him doing I think a really nice job of saying I sell stuff. They are consulting services, they are packaged, you can buy them he does a really nice job of Talking about the fact that he has something to sell. And that can feel hard to do. And again, that's one of the, that's kind of part of the balance we're navigating here is the balance between creating reader value, creating future expertise value for ourselves. And then eventually, at some point, you invest so much into this email marketing thing, you want it to create some monetary value in the short term for your business. And so really, we're trying to balance all three of those. I feel like with Kevin, again, I don't know him. But a lot of the expertise seems to come out of his client work, more so than his writing. Let me refine that. I don't think I said that quite precisely enough. A lot of the cultivation of expertise for Kevin hillstrom seems to come out of his client work, and less so out of his publishing to an email list. So the balance between those three things that are competing with each other reader value, future expertise value, and immediate monetary value, seems to be skewed a little bit more towards reader value, and the monetary value for his business. Because it seems to me from my perspective, that he's able to do the expertise cultivation that he needs to do, exclusively in his client work.
I don't know if any of you have seen a kayaker, surfing on a river. This is I think, not the ocean. This is a really big river. And there's rivers, you know, the whitewater portion of rivers can form static waves. So something that's like a wave, but it's not moving the way it would move in the ocean, it's just sort of fixed in one location of the river. And this is a kayaker, surfing a static wave. And I think that's our next sub genre. Maybe we call them the news surfer. So going back, Matt Levine, he has the benefit of this ever changing river of new events happening in the world of finance, new idiots screwing it up, getting caught by the SEC. new stuff happening new developments every single day. So that is, in a way the driving energy of what you see someone like Matt Levine doing. But against that is his little, when I say little, I don't mean that in a dismissive way at all, just relative to the river of news. His little point of view and perspective is the kayak. And he does have a point of view that will be in any finds a way to make it memorable and funny. You know, and, and, and a bit insightful. It's a little bit like, Oh, he's really seen some patterns here. And so one of the things you'll see Matt Levine say, over and over again, is this sort of catchphrase. Everything is securities fraud. And what he means by that is like, all sorts of Well, I don't know exactly everything he means by that. But to me, what it means is, you can find so many ways in which something that someone does is some form of securities fraud. So that's an example of his point of view, he's sort of surfing it against this wave. So the wave is passing by, it's a river of news. And he's just kind of doing tricks on it, sort of showing off his point of view against this constantly changing river of events. And that makes him interesting, because you know that when you read his column, he's going to help you see something you might not have seen yourself, and it's going to be how his point of view will illuminate something. And same thing with Kevin hillstrom. You know, that thing that he goes on and on about, about the omni channel thesis, he will find in current events, a way to talk about how, yep, see, those people who told you the omni channel thesis, they drove this company into bankruptcy, you know, stuff like that. That's not a direct quote. But that's an example of how Kevin hillstrom also, I think is our next fits into the same sub genre of news surfer to a certain extent
Next example I don't even know the guy's name. The CEO of this research company, civic science, publishes a not daily email, he publishes a weekly email. I think it comes out on Sundays. And there's one thing I want to point out about what he's doing that I think is really notable. He is starting out the the these emails with the most perfect intro that I will probably read on any email that week. I don't know how he does it, but he has this kind of pitch, perfect usage of stuff that's happening in his daily life, stuff that's happening out there in the world. The intersection of the two, to me, it reads is very warm, very human. And then the rest of the email. He's talking about what their research firm has discovered in the last week. And I don't know much about civic science at all. But I love these emails. And so I think they're a really wonderful example, I just don't know where I heard of this civic science guy might have been from David Baker, somewhere along the way. And I don't really know what he's trying to promote. Like, there's this very, sort of like, well, this is what what our, you know, team or research team found this past week. And maybe he's promoting the service. But in a very, just incredibly low pressure way, I don't think there's ever a direct call to action, like, call one of our salespeople to find out how much our data pricing is. And like, I've done I don't think I've ever seen that in what this guy is doing. But I want to point it out, because he's such a wonderful example of weaving together these threads of what happened in my life, what's happening in the world, etc. in a way that just feels like perfect to me.
Got a few more examples. I always feel like with Ben settle, I need to give this sort of content warning. Not someone I know personally, been on his email list for a while and at some point unsubscribe because I feel like I sort of got it, I learned what I could learn from watching what he was doing. And I don't know, you know, if this guy's playing a character, or if he really is someone who A lot of you would find kind of a reprehensible person, I just don't know. But mechanically email seven days a week or more emails a lot. It seems to be a sort of simulcast, if you will, to a blog, and an email list. He is an example, that sort of textbook example of using direct response marketing in a very direct and almost assertive way. One of the interesting things you'll see is that he has a paid monthly newsletter. And so every time the last week of the month comes around, it's he's launching the same product all over again. And because it's newsletter, and the content changes, you will see him use, you know, really impressively large amounts of direct response tactics, maybe their pressure tactics, you know, fear of missing out curiosity. So from the poetry perspective, like this guy is at the top of his game in terms of using curiosity, fear of missing out and other direct response mechanics to sell something. I'd characterize what he does, he characterizes it as infotainment, a blend of information and entertainment. So interesting. Again, you know, be warned you may not like the content. I think the reader value that he creates first, you know, folks who find what he does worthwhile, is more effective action. Like you can actually learn some stuff about email marketing from what he's doing a change mental state for some folks and new ideas, and a changed emotional state. Again, if you don't find what he does offensive, you might actually find it funny. And so for fun, or entertaining or interesting. So for some folks, there's going to be that change the emotional state.
See three more examples here. So Joshua roll, Josh is someone I know, he's a good guy. Mechanically. Wait a second, sorry, got mixed up there on my slides. Let's talk about Ben Thompson and strategic curry. Instead, we'll get the Josh Earl. So Ben Thompson is someone who has started an independent media company, it's it appears to be mostly just him, sort of a company of one, but mechanically, what he's doing is writing a lot. And you can subscribe to his email list. And you get one of the things that he writes one of the articles he writes per week for free. And if you want to get the other three, you can pay for them. So he runs a subscription newsletter, but he is publishing, you know, pretty much daily. But like Matt Levine, he's in a different category than we are most likely because the Align the overlap between what he does for money, and the writing is, is 100%. Because what he does for money is the writing and the publishing. So he's running this email list. And let me turn down the volume a little bit, getting carried away talking about Ben Thompson. He's another example, from the sort of sub genre perspective of someone who is surfing a river of news with his point of view. So his point of view is that little kayak, the constantly moving river of news as what's happening in the world of technology, and media. And he has, you know, these really great memorable, you could call them points of views, or you could call them sort of strategic frameworks or ways of interpreting what companies are doing. One of them is called aggregator theory. And so, you know, this river of news is moving by and then, you know, he'll be saying things like, Oh, yeah, here's an example of how this supports my aggregator theory concept. So Ben Thompson is a really good example mechanically of the indie media model. I'm not sure many people could replicate what he's doing. He's just a fantastic writer. From the poetry perspective, I guess the one minor criticism I can say here is that his style can be a little bit overbearing or tedious or almost OCD sometimes, like this guy does not ever want to be wrong, ever. And I think it could be a bit much because I think he's missing opportunities to to incorporate humor, and humanize himself by talking about the times he was wrong. That aside, he is an excellent, excellent writer. Really great example of I think he's very focused on reader value. And that reader value, I don't know, you know, I am a was a subscriber for a year to see what he was doing. And then for me, it wasn't creating enough reader value to stay subscribed. But I think for his readers, maybe it leads to more effective action and a changed mental state.
Now we get to Josh Earl, someone I do know, really great guy. Mechanically, Josh is emailing five days a week, is a sort of a focus on teaching. And he has a point of view. I don't know the mechanicals of whether he's publishing first to his blog, and then the email list or what. But you can subscribe at his website we mentioned last week. In terms of the poetry, I think Josh is a wonderful example of weaving together some things that are not always easy to naturally weave together. So he'll say things like, you know, I did this for this client. And he weaves that in he's referencing, he's not giving like a full case study or anything like that, but he is referencing clients success. And in so doing, reminding you I have a thing that you can buy, and it's my services. I think it looks like coaching with Josh and he does so without being overbearing without having like a separate call to action, go to this page to sign up for my coaching. So it's a really great example I think of daily emailing that is focused on business development. The reader value he creates I think, is more effective action like you can actually learn from his emails, some stuff that might change how you do well. It Josh is crazy. And focused is doing outbound email marketing, which is different than, you know, sending emails to a list of folks who've opted in as hard to do it right. And so Josh is focused on that problem, and providing advice around that. So I think the reader value that he would create is more effective action. And it changed mental state.
Christopher Nandi. Another person I know, I think very highly of, mechanically, he's emailing five days a week, he's teaching, he has a point of view. And he has clear, distinct separate calls to action to buy relatively low cost info products.
Thanks for that, I've got a wrong link and slide presentation.
Eric Davis, is I think my last example, not a guy I know, someone I think highly of, mechanically, he's emailing five days a week. his audience is people who have Shopify stores. And he has something to sell them, which are some software add ons to Shopify that he produces themselves Eric's a software development. And so mechanically, you look at his emails, and you see him doing a little tip, every day of the week, or sorry, five days a week. And teaching. Here's how to think about this, here's how to do this and encouraging his audience. This terrible thing has happened, this pandemic has happened, here's some, you know, constructive advice about how you can respond to that, that sort of thing. I'm not sure if Eric's publishing to his blog first, and then his email list or exactly how he's doing that. From the poetry perspective, Eric is such a great example of using daily emailing to support software product sales. The reader value I think, is more effective action for a lot of his readers, and a changed mental state. And the value for Eric is more, I think, on the immediate monetary value than the expertise cultivation. I could be wrong about that. But I think you see Eric, like Kevin hillstrom, sort of skewing towards that end of that triad of things that are in tension with each other. So another really great example, even if you don't have a Shopify store. So Josh, Joshua roll, Christopher Nandi and Eric Davis fit into The final sub genre that I have for you here, which is the tips list, little daily, maybe five days a week, maybe less, maybe more tips about, hey, you're trying to get better at this, you want to succeed at this, you want to learn how to do this. Here's a little bite sized tip every day. For a lot of folks that consumption style is so appealing. When they think about the alternative, they might look at the far other end of the spectrum, which is a comprehensive book, or course that purports to teach them this thing, whatever it is. And they might say that's too much. That is I don't have time for that. That sounds burdensome, I'd have to reallocate time away from somewhere else. You know, if it's a course, and I go through it, and I don't get it, what next? What do I do? What's the fallback plan, this idea of a little woodpecker sized piece of useful content every day of the week, it's immensely appealing to a lot of folks. So this sub genre of a tips list, it is a bit more oriented towards folks who are selling a skill. But I could see even someone you know, like James clear, this is not how he does email. But you know, somebody who's focused on more sort of fundamental or larger scale changes, I could see them using the same the same approach, I think a lot of content, a lot of information, a lot of desired change, could be broken up into these little bite sized chunks and dripped out daily. So this daily tips list sub genre, is I think, what you see Josh, Chris and Herrick fitting into all right. As you know, there's one way to benefit from this lecture as part of it. The other part is to subscribe to some of these email lists. There's no obligation you're not getting a face tattoo here. Subscribe for a few weeks, see what they're up to on subscribers. If it's not for you, you're not gonna hurt anybody's feelings by doing that. So, you know, subscribe to their list, scrutinize what they're doing, and learn from it. And hopefully, this informs what you might do with your own daily emailing. And you might see something someone else is doing. You can adapt it to your context. It's a great way to learn. Start with observing. That's it for today. Thank you