Thursday, October 10, 2013
Thursday, September 19, 2013
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Why we are doing what we’re doing
For the 14 years that I have been in the business of helping individual investors, this is what the world of finance has looked like to most people:
Jobless claims, ECB rates, Federal Reserve, Technical analysts, conflicting messages of predictions of tops, bottoms and currency wars.
These are the distractions of a non-stop news cycle, a hype machine.
That’s why we created this:
See, we believe that for most people, getting started investing should be about three things:
1. Investing in companies that you understand and like
2. Taking a long-term view… becoming a shareholder
3. Enjoyment. You become good at the things you enjoy.
LikeFolio sets out to simplify “finance” down to what matters most…. discovering the companies that you want to call yourself an owner of.
We’re just getting started, but I love where we’re going.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Google abandoning reader was NOT an opportunity
I really cannot understand how Google abandoning reader made people think that an RSS reader was an opportunity. Obviously, the market there is shit.
Google dominated that market and still didn’t want it. Just walked away!
Not only is getting into the reader business “Red Ocean”…it’s a bloody red ocean where the only thing left are scraps that the big fish didn’t want to bother with. Leave it to the vultures to clean up that carcass.
I’m late to this but it’s a lesson we should have all learned from it. When the best don’t want the market, you shouldn’t either. Instead, invent or expand a market that they will want in the future.
Thursday, June 13, 2013
In the spring of 2002 we were 18 months into our first business and things were NOT going well. 7 or 8 paying customers, no momentum. Nothing. We lived in fear that 2 of those customers would quit the next day.
It was a sad state of affairs.
It wasn’t really for lack of trying…we were moving and doing all the time. But we had no focus. We were pinballs inside of our own miserable company.
I can distinctly remember one afternoon. The trades we sent to our clients were going badly. I was sure that half of them were going to quit. I wanted to quit.
So I started looking at other options.
"What would I do if I didn’t do this?"
It took a few hours of going through all the scenarios (work for someone else, off to business school, etc) and then it hit me like a ton of bricks.
I don’t want to do anything else. This is what I want to do.
This is worth fighting for.
I can’t really describe how liberating this was. Worry turned to determination. Fear to strength. I know it sounds cliche’ but it’s true.
THe energy was palpable. Confidence completely reversed. I didn’t know how or when DaytradeTeam would be successful…but at that moment I knew that it would be eventually…and that’s all it took.
Focus came into the picture…what to accomplish next, what to experiment on, what THIS WEEK’s goals were. I finally knew exactly where I was going and that failure (or treading water) was not an option.
Imagine your business, right now, on the brink of failure. IS it worth fighting for?
If not—-how do you make it worth fighting for?
Thursday, April 25, 2013
The “launch party” for Disney Brothers Studio.
They were nervous.
It’s no secret that we were sticking just about every nickel we had on the chance that people would really be interested in something totally new and unique in the field of entertainment.
They were down…
Mickey Mouse popped out of my mind onto a drawing pad 20 years ago on a train ride from Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner.
But they knew….
The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.
I am not influenced by the techniques or fashions of any other motion picture company.
We are not trying to entertain the critics. I’ll take my chances with the public.
All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.
and there is no “done”…
Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.
Build what you believe in. Believe in what you build.
Ignore them all.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Thursday, April 4, 2013
Big companies fear you. Let me repeat that. Big companies fear you.
You’re fast, they’re slow. You’re nimble, they’re not. You’re innovating, they’re conference-calling.
Yes, their mass makes them extremely powerful. They can monetize FAR better than you can even dream of. That’s what they do… they push the big lever that works really well.
But if you’re smart and stay in the blue ocean, they can’t touch you. They know it.
That’s why they need you. They need you to find a new lever that works. They need you to show them the way through dangerous new water.
Don’t compete on the big levers. Find the small ones that work and grow them.
Thursday, February 21, 2013
"You’re born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I’m living like there’s no tomorrow, because there isn’t one." — Don Draper
You’re not gonna starve.
You’re not gonna to sleep in the rain.
What is it you’re scared of? A mortgage? A non-existant scoreboard that shows you losing to non-existant competitors your age? You already lost.
401k, IRA, credit score, retirement, mortgage, lexus, granite countertops.
You keep thinking you’ve moved up. You’ve got more. You’re almost “there”.
The reality is, if you’re “moving up” just to move up, you’re doing very little other than ratcheting up obligations. Trapping yourself into a situation where you feel like you don’t control what you do.
The good news… it all goes away the minute you decide it does. You’ve got the keys.
Attribution: ”A Whiskey Girl” by daveydeathwish
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Don’t allow “perfect” to become the enemy of the good.
Go, fix, go…..but always GO.
“How did you come up with the idea for Voomly?”
I’ve been asked that several times over the last month.
The answer really has two parts:
I have always been, and will always be, inspired by the prospect of empowering individuals to do big things with their passions and knowledge.
It’s my natural state. When I hear someone talk about what they know…what they love…and I see that twinkle in their eye…. I want them to do something with it. For themselves. I want to be a part of it.
Digital goods and services are knowledge, experience and passion transfer mechanisms. The scalability that an individual can achieve through digital mediums is unbelievable….it’s literally greater than the power that Julius Ceaser wielded in his prime.
Combine these with the innate goodness of “price” (which by definition demands an exchange of real value) and you have a winning thesis: Empower individuals to create and sell premium digital content from their knowledge, experience, and passion.
In other words… Voomly is a business-manifestation of myself.
We regretted selling our first company.
DaytradeTeam was a subscription-based business where clients gained access to expert traders’ knowledge and content.
After spending 7 years building the company, the subscription platform, the client base, the content-delivery mechanisms…. we sold it. It was a good deal with a good buyer and we felt really good about it.
But we soon grew to regret it.
Because we realized that we left so much on the table. We realized that we had built this system for ourselves only. We benefitted from it, so did our clients, so did the buyer. But no one else.
We realized, after the fact, that we had built a platform for creating a very meaningful subscription-based business….and only released it to one user…ourselves. “That could have been so powerful for experts in other niches. Damn it!”
So here we are. The platform is ready & growing. So is the user-base.
We can’t wait until a single Voomly Seller is bigger than DaytradeTeam was. It will happen.
I hope it’s you.
Give it a shot. I’ll help you create and promote your business. It’s what I do.
p.s. Yes I eat my own dog food! Swantastic Startups, for help with your startup.