Welcome to the newest issue of the Do the Opposite newsletter, sent every Monday! If you like it, please share this link with your friends: https://tinyletter.com/dotheopposite
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Kevin Kelly - 1000 True Fans
I learnt about this article from Tim Ferriss' recommendation years ago. Kevin Kelly is the founding executive editor of Wired magazine. The article is still very relevant (written in 2008) and hugely influential. The article has predicted the rise of creators that use the Internet to market their products/services, growing the fan base from the ground up. The article does some math to figure out that all you need to support you as an independent creator is 1000 true fans. A true fan is someone who will buy anything that you create. Obviously, not everyone will resonate with your work as much as the people who become true fans, but along the journey, you will connect with more and more people like that.
If we were to do some quick math, let's say you make an app that has a $10/mo subscription fee. Then, each 100 subscribers will bring an additional $1000 a month. Not bad!
Here is the original article (click to read)
I've also found a more recent (2016) video of Kevin Kelly explaining the concept of 1000 true fans and providing some more context around it: video
Average Ideas + Persistence
Chris Coyer is a very famous person in web design. I mean, he has the @css handle on Twitter for his project :) This is a very short blog post , outlining his path and what he believes to be the secret of his success. It's not about having the best idea, but about persisting, iterating, evolving and polishing it. Read it here
"Nothing Fails Like Success" by Jeffrey Zeldman
An eye-opening article exploring the unhealthy incentives the investors in startups have - they either want a mind-blowing success and 10x returns, or they want a complete failure, which they can write off in their taxes. "Nobody wants to invest 10,000 and get 12,000 back."
I've decided to also add the 'Podcast Episodes' section, which will appear from time to time. :) I think recommending Podcasts is way too broad, because the content is so different in quality and topics, and instead I will share particular episodes that I think are valuable. Listen to the podcast using your favourite podcast app, I am sharing the links to their respective websites.
1) [Tim Ferriss Show] I sometimes listen to "The Tim Ferriss Show" podcast. It all depends on the guest on that day. I really enjoyed this episode with Jason Fried (the other half of Basecamp, along with DHH), where Jason discusses the practices and processes at Basecamp - one of the companies that is really 'doing the opposite', and doing so very successfully. I hope you enjoy it! (Remember that you can listen to podcasts on 1.5X or 2X speed without losing any comprehension - if needed, increase speed gradually)
2) [freeCodeCamp Podcast] This episode is hot off the press, where Shawn Wang shares his path and experience going from a $350K/year finance job to learning to code on his own and becoming a Software Developer.
"The way circus elephants are trained demonstrates this dynamic well: When young, they are attached by heavy chains to large stakes driven deep into the ground. They pull and yank and strain and struggle, but the chain is too strong, the stake too rooted. One day they give up, having learned they cannot pull free, and from that day forward they can be “chained” with a slender rope. When this enormous animal feels any resistance, thought it has the strength to pull the whole circus tent over, it stops trying. Because it believes it cannot, it cannot.
This opera is being sung in homes all over America right, the stakes driven in to the ground, the heavy chains attached, the children reaching the point they believe they cannot pull free. And at that point, they cannot."
– Gavin De Becker, "The Gift of Fear"
BONUS: Do the Opposite also has a public Telegram channel. The content there is shorter, a bit more random (basically anything weird or interesting that catches my eye) - articles, tweets, videos, images etc. Hope to see you there as well! :) Here it is: https://t.me/dotheopposite
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Keep doing the opposite,