How to Position Your Expertise in Online Education: The “Us vs. Them” Technique)

  I was talking to Brian Balfour about retention and engagement, and asked him this question: “Should you try to retain people at the onboarding phase, or try to resurrect people who have churned and are now dormant?” You see, I’ve heard arguments for both sides, but when I told Brian this, here’s his response: Later he explained: “A non-practitioner will make all sorts of arguments as to why it’s better to resurrect churned users (they’re already exposed, it’s cheaper, it’s a large audience, etc.). But a practitioner knows from experience it’s always more valuable to focus on new or
Continue reading...

mad men

Learning the Language of Growth

  I just finished my second week at Reforge and if I had to sum up the week, it’s this: I’m learning a new language — and it’s hard. Reforge teaches growth professionals how to advance their skills in growth through online education, networking and mentorship. The students are 3 years into their career at companies like Facebook, Google, Dropbox, LinkedIn, etc. aka some damn smart people. And after 5 minutes of talking with them, I realize I don’t have the vocabulary (yet) to talk through the ideas and concepts I’ll eventually teach, things like growth models, churn, and viral
Continue reading...

silicon valley image

2 Things About SF Tech Culture

  Last week I learned some interesting things about SF tech culture. For example: Investing in cryptocurrencies is a thing People invest hundreds, even thousands of dollars in “coffee set-ups” — home coffee brewing equipment to make their own personal perfect cup of coffee Everyone loves wearing Patagonia But the biggest mental shifts I’ve had to make is about money. Here are 2 ideas about money I’m trying to hold simultaneously in my mind:
Continue reading...

I Will Teach Team Pic

Thank you, I Will Teach You to be Rich

  5 years ago, I was waiting tables at a Thai restaurant (thanks for the reminder, Facebook). To be honest, it was a low-point: I lost 20lbs on my diet of peanut butter sandwiches for lunch and wonton soup for dinner. I made $35 in tips during my shifts. Everything in my life felt like… you remember that B-movie with Matthew Mcconaughey and Sarah Jessica Parker, Failure to Launch? Basically, that. In an act of desperation and tapping into my savings, I bought an online course from this blogger named Ramit Sethi. It was called Find Your Dream Job, and
Continue reading...

Din Tai Fung1

Eating at Din Tai Fung

Before going to Taiwan, my friend prepared a document of recommendations. She wrote: “Soup Dumplings: Din Tai Fung is big in Taiwan, but I say it’s overrated. A soup dumpling is a soup dumpling, and we get great ones stateside.” We went to Din Tai Fung, and I couldn’t disagree more. The hype is well-deserved. This was probably my favorite meal (out of many good meals) in Taiwan. Of course, it wasn’t just about the soup dumplings — which were good. Here are some other things I loved about our meal at Din Tai Fung.
Continue reading...

Here’s Why I Clicked on Wilco de Kreij’s Facebook Ad

Here’s Why I Clicked on Wilco de Kreij’s Facebook Ad

The first time I visited Times Square in New York City, I spent the entire day enthralled by the city’s lights and 30 foot billboards. Today, it’s just another stop on the subway where I have to dodge tourists and selfie sticks to get where I’m going. This is exactly how I feel about the wave of online courses popping up on my Facebook and Instagram feed this past year. I’ve been playing in the online course sandbox for the last 3 years. 90% of the time, I scroll right past these ads — they’re basically invisible. So, when I
Continue reading...

How 16-year-olds use social media

How My 16-Year-Old Cousins Use Instagram

I have a ton of younger cousins and second-cousins (which is what happens when your mom is #7 of 7 children and your dad is #4 of 4). We were talking about how they used social media, and how completely different it was from how I (and my peers) use it. (Mary Choi takes an amazing in-depth look teen behavior on social media here.) Here are my notes on how they use social media: 1. “I don’t have Facebook.” She never got into it. And if she’s not into it, that tells me her friends probably aren’t on there either.
Continue reading...

They make you adapt for them.

“They make you adapt for them.”

I caught this absolutely beautiful bit of foreshadowing from Robin Black a few months back. There was something magical about it, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. So I saved the interview and kinda forgot about it. It wasn’t until recently I connected the dots when reading other old interviews. This first interview they recorded a day before Conor McGregor knocked out Jose Aldo in a record 13 seconds. Robin is talking about how certain fighters have learned to adapt to Jose Aldo’s leg kicks. Basically, you have to keep your weight off your front foot. It gets
Continue reading...

Workcation Part 2

Workcation Part 2: March 2017 Session

(If you’re wondering, I didn’t write up Part 1 so you didn’t miss anything.) Brian and I came up with our Workcation Idea while driving back from the Poconos one weekend: What if every 2 months, we booked a weekend someplace without Internet and cranked out a bunch of work? No (or at least, limited) Internet. No distractions. Just work for the weekend. Brian wanted to work on a screenplay. I wanted to work on my online business, ImMovingtoLA.com, and articles and scripts I’m writing for I WIll Teach and GrowthLab.   It seemed like an awesome idea so we
Continue reading...