What Gives My Life a Lot of Purpose
You know, I just find my, my life has an awful lot of purpose when I'm growing. And so, last week, I didn't record any podcasts this week, I intend to make up for it. But last week, I had Strategic Coach Monday and Tuesday, I had a wonderful time with Dan Sullivan, with Shannon Waller with Christie chambers with the rest of the team. And I really just I learned a ton I learned so much. Last week on Monday and Tuesday about myself, I thought about my own thinking so much. It was so intense that I was basically a zombie Wednesday and Thursday. I mean, I showed up for only the things that were really, really important. And I put 150% of my energy into the things that were really important. And anything that could be pushed to this week I push to this week. It was really an amazing week. I can't wait to recap it with you. We're gonna recap it on this podcast. Welcome to Seconds and Cents Episode 35. So we're going to start with something new today. I've never done this before, but I'm calling it hot. Take headlines. So this is I'm just going to talk about my hot take towards the headlines that I found today on CNN business. I try not to go read the news. In fact, I've deleted the apple news. I've deleted all news apps from my phone. Um, I don't go to I don't go to any news websites. This is kind of a first for me going to see anything business and and probably 18 months or two years. But I think it's important to say that I do keep up with current events. I just don't read the news. I keep up with current events primarily in ways where somebody will talk to me if it is so important that people are talking to me about it, then it's probably something that I should look into at that point. Then I go look into things but for right now these are business headlines. These aren't political headlines, election headlines, Coronavirus, headlines anything else, I don't really want to talk about any of that stuff. But business headlines First of all, today, I'm recording this on Tuesday, October 13. There's an apple event today, people have pretty widely known that they're going to announce iPhone 12 I think this is a non issue. I think the fact that iPhone 12 is gonna have five g on it. It's a non issue. I think that we've gotten to a point here, everybody where people don't really care the features that the iPhone has, they care that iPhone connects with their iPad, it connects with their Mac, they care that they have an Apple Music subscription or that they can use iMessage. Although you can use my iMessage on Android with some app, I don't remember. I just I just don't think that the hardware really differentiates itself. I think the brand differentiates itself, I think yes, every year they make unbelievable advancements, the camera, I think the the advancement that they made to the camera a couple years ago, where you can change the depth of the background after the photo was taken is ridiculous. I think that is like the coolest feature that I have heard Apple come out with in a long time in terms of like a hardware on the iPhone type of thing. But to be honest with you here, I think there's this gonna be there's gonna be this apple event, I think they're gonna announce a blue phone, there might be some sort of a form factor change, it's going to have five G, there'll be there'll be updates to the camera. Maybe there'll be Touch ID and face ID I don't know. But ultimately, I think that they're just a ton of people, millions of people on the iPhone upgrade program, I'm one of them, which means I basically I pay my phone, I pay my phone on a monthly installment at zero percent interest. And then after 12 payments, I can upgrade my phone and get a new iPhone. And so really, I don't think that this is going to hold as much kind of
previous iPhone events did. I don't think it's because Steve Jobs isn't there anymore. I don't think it's because Phil Schiller has taken a smaller role at Apple, or Tim Cook doesn't really want to be on stage as often or they're shaking at shaking up their executive team or whatever. I just think that Apple's real innovation here was that they figured out how to get your iPhone as a as a service. They figured out how to really build the ecosystem between all the Apple devices to be so strong that to be honest with you, it's a real pain to leave. And I think they figured out that the thing with the iPhone is that the software differentiates the hardware. And the software here is not features like widgets. widgets aren't things that sell iPhones, widgets are things that Apple probably created two years ago or three years ago, and they threw in there because they decided you know, it'll be fun to ship this now. I think
thing that the software that differentiates the hardware for Apple is the connectivity. It's iCloud. It's the just the thing that makes it so that your devices sync seamless. Honestly, they just sink in the background and it just works like magic. So Apple event today, I think, are they going to make a zillion dollars off of this event? Yes, they are isn't going to be a huge deal that takes over all the headlines.
I doubt it.
The second hot take headline here, delta has allegedly said that they think it'll be up to two years for air travel to rebound. Breaking news. I don't think air travel will rebound. And let me tell you why I think that this whole pandemic here is really just a pull forward. I think this pandemic is just kind of accelerating trends that were already happening. And so delta saying, Oh, yeah, we expect air travel to resume in two years, I totally don't buy it. I just don't think business travel is gonna come back. I think business travel was a ton of airline travel. And I think that the business travel tool, or I guess the biggest trap competitor to business, travel is zoom. And I think that people are really, really interested in using zoom for replacing events and reflect replacing meetings, we're being there in person is not going to make a material difference. Sometimes being there in person will make a material difference. And right now, I think everybody is kind of working through that. I think everybody's a little more flexible. Do I think that air travel will increase from where it is right now? Absolutely. But do I think that business travel people just flying around the world every single week? Because that's just how they think business is done? is gonna is gonna happen all that often? No, I don't I just think that zoom is going to be an enormous replacement for that. I think zoom is doing the job well enough. I don't think that you're going to see people in VR doing VR meetings. I think that's like the most overhyped thing in the history of the world. But I think that you're going to see that zoom replaces a material portion of business, air travel, whether that's 10%, whether that's 5%, whether that's 20%. I don't know. But I think it'll be material, I think that there's a high likelihood here that the airlines have to raise their prices in order to get the revenue back. We'll see if the demand returns when the airlines raise their prices. But I, if I'm Delta, I think that it's going to be a tough, it's going to be tough decade or so. I also think that one of the things that's interesting here is the airlines historically have had this real competitive advantage, this is a super hot take this is coming stream of consciousness, the airlines have had this real competitive advantage and that the world had been trained that in person meetings were the best things that you could do, that's the best way to make a connection. And then the world retrained itself to be able to make a good enough connection. And to ask the question, Is this good enough with zoom. And I think because the airlines had such a competitive advantage, there are things like the customer service, there were things like these ridiculous like, ways that you board the airline where they have you get work your way all the way up to like level one status. And then they have like 25 different pre boarding things. And you know, your ticket doesn't transfer to this type of a flight or you can't go from international to domestic in this way, using this voucher right there all these different ridiculous customer service things with the major airlines and they were able to get away with that, I think you're gonna see that one of the differentiating factors for the airlines as the world kind of adjust to this new normal is going to be that customer service is going to play an enormous role. I think you're already seeing that with Southwest Southwest seems to be rebounding slightly better than a lot of the other airlines, at least from what I'm hearing. And so we'll see how that continues. But I think you can expect that there's a high likelihood that in two years, the airplanes will still not be full for all the flights, and so there will just be fewer flights. Delta and the other airlines will take old airplanes out of commission. They will kind of not rehire the amount of people that they had before there'll be fewer flights at higher rates and that's how they're going to be able to justify their revenue rebounding, but they're not going to have nearly as many travelers heartache headlines number three, um, YouTube set YouTube CEO won't say that they are censoring q anon. What's q anon? It's like this ridiculous conspiracy group that basically says that, like, all the world's elite are doing this like highly illegal activities and it's like the Illuminati on steroids from what I know.
To be honest with you, I wouldn't know if I have come in contact with any media relating to Q anon or from Q anon. I don't know if Toronto is an organization Or mindset. I just know that it's like this, this weird conspiracy theory Illuminati type stuff. YouTube won't say if they're censoring q anon I, who cares? I think it's all marketing. I think the internet is a vast wide place. And if they don't want to if the Q anon mindset I'm going to call it a mindset if the Q anon mindset, or the Q anon members want to go put their content on Vimeo, or they want to self host their content, or they want to come up with 50 blogs to share their content or whatever, it's gonna be like, Who cares? Why does YouTube have to comment on if they're censoring q anon? In fact, if I'm YouTube, I don't even engage in that question, because I just don't see how you can when either you say you're censoring q anon and then people say, oh, free speech. Oh, you're censoring a certain groups ideals? Oh, YouTube is supposed to be a platform, while they seem a lot like an editor and a publisher. Or you don't say that you're censoring q anon. And then everybody's saying, why are you allowing them to spread conspiracy theories? I just don't think that it's going to make a huge difference. If I'm YouTube, I don't necessarily censor it. But I figure out how to how to not let people's kind of YouTube spirals be conspiracy theory content. So you know, when you get on YouTube, and then you look up, it's an hour later, and you've watched like, 25 videos, I would like, I would say, Hey, we think this content might be conspiracy theory, we're removing you from recommendations, but we're not removing you from the platform, or removing you from a certain type of recommendations. I don't know what that plays into legally. I don't know if that makes them a publisher, anything else? I don't think it's a shadow ban, because I don't think it's shadow. I think you're just telling them like we think that this is conspiracy theory stuff. This is scientifically proven to be untrue. In the case of flat earth, or this seems quite like fringe material here. As the credibility of the material that you're putting out increases, then maybe we will we will reconsider? I don't know. But I don't see why YouTube would engage in censoring q anon, I think. I just don't think people are really that interested in it. Now. That's what I thought about Flat Earth a couple years ago, too. And now it's like 10 times bigger 100 times bigger. Lastly, more positive news. In my opinion, from the business front, Disney is going to overhaul their kind of management structure organizations organizational structure with a focus on Disney plus. First of all, is Disney plus an enormous success? Yes, it is. They have something like 60 million subscribers right now they're going to have in the first year, they're like 10 months in or 11 months, and they have 16 million subscribers. They're going to have 90 million ish, come 2024 there'll be profitable come 2024, including payments to like licensing deals inside of Disney, meaning like 20th Century Fox made avatar they would license avatar from 20th Century Fox to Disney plus, even though Disney owns 20th Century Fox, it's like a weird accounting thing. I think this just totally makes sense. I think the movie theaters already had become more and more of an experience on the movie theaters, were places you wanted to go for, like Avengers end game, when you wanted to watch it with a lot of people, you wanted to have that energy in there. Right. Um, but I think they're an equal number of movies, especially when I think about the small kid factor. There are an equal number of movies that I think a lot of families are going to just simply want to watch at home. I also think that like the idea that you can monetize a user or a viewer of Disney plus, and a zillion different ways. So first of all, you're directly monetizing that viewer every single month by hitting their credit card for $7. Right Second of all, then you're able to sell the merchandise of off of it, you're able to sell the you're able to sell amusement park tickets off of it, and you're keeping all of that margin, you're not relying on other people for distribution, I think is huge. One of the things that that I've learned over the last couple of years is
I think there's a huge a huge amount of power that comes from being the distributor of the product. And historically with moving with television, Disney has not been the distributor of the product. They've been the creator of the product and their differentiation has been in the content, but they have relied on television channels to distribute their product. They've relied on television networks like spectrum, right to be able to distribute their product and they've relied on AMC and on cinemark to distribute their product. And then after the customer was engaging with AMC, or cinemark then they would enjoy the Disney experience. So much as they would go to the theme parks or wherever else, I think that Disney being able to take charge of the distribution of some of their content is just delightful. For Disney, I think if you're a Disney shareholder, this is absolutely the way of the future. I think the fact that they were able to release move on charge 30 bucks for and call it a day is awesome. I mean, like, what, what a really cool idea to just embrace the fact that people are having viewing parties charge 30 bucks, and it's over. I think that this is the future for Disney, they're going to monetize, they're going to monetize the end consumer, they're going to go direct to consumer in every aspect of their business, I think they're going to continue the movie theater, the movie theater route for some big movies. But I think for those big movies, they're gonna, people are gonna want that experience. Anyway, I know, I wouldn't want to watch Avengers end game, the night it comes out at midnight alone in my living room, right, I'd want to be in a movie theater, I'd want to be there with other people experiencing it altogether, experiencing the crowd reactions and everything else. And so I just I feel really good about this for Disney, I think the focus on on Disney plus is going to be really good. And lastly, as it relates to Disney, they are giving a specific team, the entire like, kind of responsibility for the profit and loss of content as it relates to the profit and loss statement as it relates to Disney plus, clearly, they're focused on monetization. And clearly they know that the margins inside of Disney plus are really, really good. The margins inside of creating differentiated content and putting it on a streaming service are really, really good. I think the kind of real opportunity here for Disney is to continue to leverage the brand continued to leverage the creative team continue to leverage the history, and just the massive asset base of the of the Disney library to create such a ridiculously vertically integrated direct to consumer model, that it looks really competitive as a share, like for as a potential shareholder in comparison to Netflix, or HBO, which are paying, which are paying studios for content and they're just like, then they're just kind of white labeling the content as a Netflix original. We'll see how it goes. That's the hot take headlines. While I enjoyed that we're gonna be doing that again.
Strategic Coach, Strategic Coach recap. And so what do we talk about a coach? Well,
we talked about clients, we talked about who's your right fit client, who's you're not necessarily a wrong fit client, but who are the clients that you want to grow with. And I always think of my best clients as collaborators. And the reason why I think about my best clients as collaborators is because I think my best clients and I have a bigger future together, we have a bigger future where we've clearly created a just a ton of value for each other, the marketplace is responding really, really well. And we we both think that our future is bigger than our past, I think when I where I have kind of challenges with clients and prospects is when I think that the client or prospect has a past that's bigger than their future. Or worse yet, when the client thinks that their past is bigger than their future, and so they're just trying to hang on. I don't really like playing games where we're just trying to hang on now. I love serving those clients, like don't get me wrong, I enjoy serving those clients, I think the products that we have serve, serve all of those different types of clients where whether they are they're growing in a really material way. Or if Hey, you know what I'm trying to hang the hang on while I find my next opportunity while I figure out what the next thing is going to be. We can serve any any of those clients, I think my best clients really understand what their future looks like. And they understand how their future is bigger than their past and what impact it's going to make on their lives. And then also in the lives of their customers on the lives of their stakeholders. And so we talked a lot about our best clients, our best clients and not our worst clients, but our clients that are a bit more stagnant. We talked about, well, how can we create for all all different levels of clients, right? How can we create a bigger future for them? How can we help them really grow? How can we help them kind of create that future for themselves or accelerate that future for themselves? And so what did it mean to me? Well, I've been having a problem here with our business model where we had this we had like LEED AI right and we have these types of like game changing collaborations where another company and I come together and we basically form a third company, or we walk into a company's headquarters, and we report directly to the CEO. And we automate a bunch of their processes, we create AI as a new team member for them, we create an AI assistant that helps every single member of their team do their job infinitely better than they did before, or free them up to do the things that are more creative, more exciting, more fascinating, more motivating, right? And we had surge and surge, and the other business unit didn't really talk to each other.
where I had a problem was I was I was asking myself the question, well, how can I create? How can I take a search client and make their future so much bigger than their past, that they can't wait to grow their business into an area that's completely competition free. For example, when we started lead AI with Richmond source, there was nobody using AI to write content and distributing it as a news wire. Now, there were all these different research articles write about how AI is going to become a newspaper publisher, and yada, yada, yada. And then, and then when we told people, hey, we think that we should use AI to write newspaper articles, and then we can just publish the newspaper articles on behalf of newspapers. Right? Then the question you get was, why isn't Google doing this? And is it the technology already out there? And yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. But people aren't doing it. Right? Nobody is doing this. We're the first people into the space. So maybe we can just operate in a competition free environment, maybe we can operate in this environment where
pricing ourselves against our competitors, we're not even thinking about competitors, because we don't have them. Instead, what we're doing with risk creating the most value that we possibly can for our clients. And we're pricing ourselves and we're servicing our clients, and we're creating value, according to the value that we really want to deliver. And that's what happened. We had no competition, two years, no competition. And so the question that I was asking ourselves, like my team and myself and my clients is how can I take you a surge client? How can I take you, somebody, we're work rolling website traffic for you on Pinterest, we're just delivering you a ton of website visitors using Pinterest every single month.
And you are monetizing those those websites,
those website visitors, but how can we take you and clearly help you grow materially away from delivering you more customers, and more website traffic? How can we create a mutually beneficial growth pattern so that your You can't imagine life without search? Because search was so valuable and driving website traffic? And then we figured out how to make that traffic convert? And then we figured out how to make those products more high margin? And then we figured out how, how are we going to help you grow your teams that you can even expand the impact? And how are you going to elevate You're right, like some growth trajectory that really makes it so that those clients futures are bigger than their past. And then all the way up to the point where we're creating AI as your who for your business, or we're creating a new business in partnership with you where we have no competition, right? Where we're doing something that's totally radical that nobody's done before. And how can we just take you from from surge, which is a fantastic capability, all the way to the point where you're a game changing. And it seemed like we had no connection there. And through Strategic Coach this week, or last week, we figured out how how we were going to, to kind of recreate surge as a product where instead of surge being a product, that's a capability where the capability is driving website traffic, its surge, as growth surge as a future that's bigger than your past a future where your business can be radically transformed, your life can be radically transformed. Where surge isn't necessarily a disruptor, for ads, or for organic growth or for conventional digital marketing or whatever else but surge is actually just a transformer for it. So I'm going to talk about that more in future podcasts. But it was really, really good. I love getting the insights on kind of on what makes my best clients, my best clients, what makes the clients that I need some make my best clients, my best clients. I just absolutely loved having that insight. And so I think that Strategic Coach last week might have been the best ever and it was on zoom. And Dan Sullivan had this amazing quote, kind of moving on. Dan Sullivan had this absolutely incredible quote, he said, You know,
I find that my life has an awful lot of purpose when I'm growing.
Now he doesn't assign all of his purpose to growth right like he has a wonderful relationship with his wife, he's clearly thrilled inside of his business. He's healthier than ever before all these different things. But he says, I find my, my life has an awful lot of purpose when I'm growing, and I was sitting there and I was thinking to myself, boy, that is a true statement. And he added onto a set. And if you think back to the best times in your life, you were growing during those times. And when I think back, I think while there was a time where I was a senior in high school, and Peter Diamandis walked up on stage, I was in San Francisco for the first time, Peter Diamandis. And only time, Peter Diamandis walks up on stage, he says, the best way to impact or to make a billion dollars is to impact a billion people. And I thought, well, that, that is just fantastic. I never once thought before, like, Oh, we can impact a billion people. And we can actually do it through a company not through not for profit. And then he goes into all these examples about how, like the best company to ever solve, or to ever, like, make a difference in solving the water problem in the world is coke. Right, and I'm sitting there just dumbfounded and, and I've been kind of looking for some direction in my life. And, and he's like, technology is a tool that allows you to impact people's lives. Technology is a tool that allows you to make a difference that really impacts a billion people, like the best people to ever democratize access to information or Google, Google did the best job in the history of the world, making information accessible.
Google is a super profitable company, unbelievably profitable company. And, and so I'm sitting here, I'm thinking, well, technology can be a tool that I can use to make a real impact on the world to make a real difference in the world. And now I had found, like, a vision, I had found a roadmap for how I was going to spend the rest of my life no questions asked, and that was answered once. And for all, what a growth experience. It just so happened, that was like a three day conference that I was at. And I was exhausted for a week after that. But my, my greatest transformation. I think, in my I would say my greatest transformation in all of college, was going to that one conference. And then the following six months after that, I think another experience where i was growing a lot was we adjust we I you year, two years after two years after I'm at that conference.
So I'm like,
fully in the trenches of technology fully in the trenches of building a company. I have one team member working 20 hours a week on just one client project. And we adjust, we the problem that we were solving right then was how are we going to build lead AI, the first version of lead AI? How are we going to figure out this is actually the question we asked, how are we going to figure out how to teach a computer how to write and publish a newspaper article in six weeks? I look back on that six weeks. So finally, I had a wonderful time. It was a true I mean, it was a true tree. It was like Christmas Eve every night waking up and working on on what was the first version of lead AI writing that code, figuring out how are we going to teach computer how to write how are we going to teach a computer how to make sense how we're going to teach a computer how to handle all the vault vulnerability, right at the same time, I was able to go to China, with Peter with a bunch of people who are really successful. And so not only am I just having the most wonderful time, figuring out how I'm going to write code to teach a computer how to write a newspaper article. And then six weeks later, you know, we release the software. Week One, we wrote what we wrote and published twice as many articles in a day, as they had published the entire previous year's season. And I'm going to China. I'm learning about the Chinese business culture. I'm learning about the Chinese culture as a whole. I'm meeting a whole host of new people. That's also where I got introduced, introduced to Dan Sullivan, Strategic Coach. So then I'm going to Strategic Coach, and it was just oh my gosh, I mean, what an amazing four months or five months of just pure growth. It was fun. It was so exciting. I look back on it so fondly at that exact same time I started to really take charge of my health I had really started to take control of my health. I was doing more intense exercise than ever before. I was feeling better than ever before I was having more fun than ever before. And so when I look back At the times that I think were the best in my in my life as an individual and excluding personal relationships. I would say I was absolutely the times where I was growing the most It was absolutely the time grows. So outside of my comfort zone that I cannot even believe myself. And I think Dan, Dan Sullivan was absolutely correct. First of all, I find my life has an awful lot of purpose when I'm growing. And second of all, when I look back at the best times of my life, excluding those personal relationships, excluding connections with people in my personal life, I absolutely think those times were the times where I was growing were the best times. I think, lastly, just to kind of finish this up, this has been a long podcast, though, to finish this up. I think the best kind of growth is where I solve a problem once and for all. So for me,
like when I think about Peter, for example, Peter Diamandis, going up on stage, the best way to impact to make a billion dollars step by a billion people, not that I necessarily care about being a billionaire, I don't. But the the kind of mindset to use technology to impact a billion people. That was a problem that was solved once and for all, how am I going to spend my professional life? What am I going to assign to my purpose to be or like, what is the tool? What is the mechanism that I'm going to use to carry out my purpose? It's going to be technology.
Right. And that problem went from totally unsolved, the problem of what is the vehicle with which I'll carry out my purpose? First of all, what is my purpose? Second, what's the vehicle with which I will carry it out? That problem was totally unsolved. I had no ability to figure out what that was going to be and went from totally unsolved to totally solved. It was not linear growth. It was a problem that I had that was unsolved that was solved once and for all. I cannot imagine life without having heard him say that. Right. That I think is just the best kind of growth. I think it's the most fun kind of growth. I think it's, it's the one that is the most difficult, because every single time you line up at the plate, you're trying to hit a home run, right? But I find that incremental growth is great in some scenarios. But I find for me, personally, I compromise a lot. So I just had a wonderful time Strategic Coach last week. I'm so excited I got to share this I got to recap it. I'm still kind of processing a lot of the information that we talked about, and I hope for for you My intention for you, the listener is that you think about the best times in your life where you growing up. Were you having a good time. Were you becoming a better version of yourself? Alright, have a great day.
The above is an AI transcription of Evan’s Seconds and Cents podcast.