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Weekly Review #42: Pigeonholed by a reporter and keys to social media success

I was featured in a New Republic article this week questioning the results of  the self development movement. Kinda cool to get media coverage, but kinda worrisome considering I talked to that reporter for maybe 5 minutes, and that she pigeonholed me as the entitled white tech guy. I’ve heard this about reporters- they fit you into their agenda with no room for your own views. At least I’m proud to be described as ‘caricaturistically West Coast optimistic’ and compared to the gods of Silicon Valley.

I just discovered Newsle through the above – it’ll alert you when your friends make the news. Another fun little app is Tinyletter, which makes making a newsletter super easy.

Salman Khan doesn’t tell his son that he’s smart, rather, he says he is clever. That way he can always attack new problems and learn, instead of thinking of knowledge as static. Reminds me of the superiority of focusing on systems rather than goals. analyzed why the #icebucketchallenge has been so effective – it’s phrased as a challenge, rather than an offer, you challenge more than one other person, and it’s easy to do yet fun to watch.

My good friend and talented game designer Ben Goldman has a new game out called Timber! Check it out – you compete as a lumberjack to cut down trees, but if you die you can come back as a bear.

Lewis Howes’ interview with Tucker Max about his personal life was actually quite enlightening. Weird to hear Tucker compare his current life to the one he used to have. Never thought I’d be quoting him on love:

  •  “The only two things that matter in life are work and love. And I don’t mean your job, I mean the things you do that matter to other people.”

Lewis’s interview with Branden Hampton was also enlightening, albeit in terms of social media.

  • He chose which categories to tweet in through which are the most easily monetized – mostly fashion, fitness, and inspirationals
  • Start with big categories that everyone likes, then ratchet it down to specifics, so you know demographics (like location or gender)
  • Social Media has marched towards laziness – from FB posts to 140 characters to a simple picture you can glance at. Instagram engagement is way bigger than anything else as a result.
  • When @fitness was taken, he nabbed @FlTNESS, which looks close enough to work
  • All the engagement and news is now received from social media, then you go to longform news/content to learn more
  • As a business, you are your industry,not your product. Talk about everything in the industry except the product, and then you become a trusted broadcaster in that space, and can safely go for the ask to buy. Think of it as a tv show vs the ads – nobody wants it to be all commericals.