The Brandon Zhang Show
#030 "Ari Lewis - Starting a Newsletter in the Attention Economy"
Nov 21, 2020
Today, Ari Lewis joins the show to talk about why everyone should start a newsletter, actionable lessons from Disney and Barstool, and what he learned from hiring a writing coach. Ari helps companies and thought leaders earn attention without paying for it. He hosts the podcast, “The Attention Economy,” where he talks with entrepreneurs, executives, and industry leaders on how they capture the scarcest resource on earth.
1. Ari's Twitter
2. Ari's Website
3. Brandon's Twitter
4. Brandon's Website
5 Key Takeaways
- I had around 1200 Twitter followers and I had zero people on the email list. So I just started to write, my goal was to write twice a week. As I began to grow, I realized there were like, all these advantages and to have you know, an audience. A lot of people they talk about, you know, build a product and go find an audience. And I'm really big on like, if you have an audience, you can sell them anything, you can figure out the product later. (Attention Merchants by Tim Wu)
- What I'm beginning to realize is like, yes, growth hacking works, but it only works to a certain extent, if you don't have good content, or if your content is not like serving a purpose, you're just not going to grow at the end of the day. And if you don't know how to growth hack, but you do have good quality content, you will grow in the long run.
- If you become like “The Everything Bundle", a great example, they're really turning into a traditional, “publication." They have like six or seven writers. Now they have multiple newsletters, multiple sections, they're doing events, they're doing podcasting. Well, how much money are you willing to give this up substack, how much does it cost is build out the same features internally and be able to personalize it.
- What barstool has done in a very similar way to Disney, is that they're not just good at creating content. They're good at monetizing their IP.
- If you want to play college sports if you want to go to the pro level. you need many coaches, right? You need a fitness coach, you need a coach for the sport, you need maybe a wellness coach, you know, there's all these coachings you need? And well, what's the difference with running a business? If arguably running a business, there could be more money on the line, then, you know, playing a sport. So why wouldn't you have a writing coach? Why wouldn't you have you know, a psychological coach? Well, you have all these different coaches.