Recently my wife and I stumbled upon an establishment called the Sugar Factory. Upon approaching, we gazed at the giant menu outside the store…more than 50 sugary drinks in huge fishbowls of every color imaginable. The majority cost a whopping $39.
I wasn’t into it, but my wife sure was.
We sat down at a table overlooking the ocean and ordered up our drinks. We ordered a Strawberry Hustle (see picture), a concoction of vodka, rum, triple sec, a pound of sugar, strawberry gummies and sugary fruit slices.
First, the wait staff placed the huge glass in front of us, just ice filled to the brim covered in candy. Five minutes later, another person came over to pour in the drink. Pouring a drink, I’ve learned, is an event.
She asked me if I wanted to record it (which I did) and as the liquid was transferred from her cup to ours, the bubbles and smoke engulfed the table. It was amazing.
My wife and I were committed to finishing it, and we did in about a half hour (followed later by a nap).
The whole experience was magical. Everyone was taking pictures and eyeing all the amazing creations from table to table. There was a birthday party on the other side of the room where a few of the kids drank from a giant mug made of chocolate cake larger than their heads.
The Sugar Factory has locations in Chicago, Miami, Las Vegas, New York and more. They’ve created a one-of-a-kind experience that you can’t get anywhere else. Everything on the menu is laced with heaping mounds of sugar, from the cheeseburgers with sugary buns to their World-Famous Sugar Factory King Kong Sundae that feeds 12 for $99.
Why am I mentioning this?
Each one of us, in order to build an audience, needs to create a one-of-a-kind experience. That means being the leading expert in our industry niche, serving up content in a totally original way, fulfilling audience pain points no one else can do, or just leaning so far into what makes you…well…you that building an audience takes only time and consistency.
The Sugar Factory has a content tilt. It’s working for them (new stores are popping up all over the world).
If you are struggling with building an audience, maybe you need to lean a little more in one direction and commit to your content tilt. Or, better said, go big or go home.
The Audience Will Choose
Last week I penned an article on how community coins (also called creator coins or social tokens) could be the next great business model for content creators. Please check it out here and let me know what you think.
To be honest, I’ve been struggling with what Web3 (the next evolution of the Internet) means for content creators. I think this new technology gets us closer (very close in fact) to the ultimate in business models…that the creator (owner) and the audience (community) share in the financial success.
Community tokens are one way to do this. NFTs are another. We are also seeing new business structures, called DAOs, that, in my opinion, will became a major form of business construction in the next year. As you’ve read in this newsletter, being part of a DAO means shared ownership and shared decision making (like a collective).
One big driver behind this change is that humans can now own things on the web, and sometimes those things can increase in value. Chris Dixon of a16z penned an article on tokenization (h/t to @Michael_ in The Tilt’s Discord group) and stated that tokens give users property rights and the ability to own a piece of the Internet.
Picture this. Let’s say you spend most of your time on sites like Facebook. Facebook takes all the data you create and then uses it to advertise to you. You become the product. You get nothing but targeted ads in exchange for your data. But today, you have a choice to spend your time on Facebook, or you can spend it as part of community (like The Tilt) where you can earn tokens for helping to grow the community. You are still giving up your data, but in one scenario you can’t own that as property and in another you can.
That’s where we are going. We will be given more choices about where we can spend our time online. In some places we can actually create and earn assets. In others, large centralized companies will monetize you.
I know this is deep, but I’m really diving down the rabbit hole here. I think this is going to be dimensions bigger than anything we’ve seen on the web so far.
This week, two podcasts helped me wrap my arms around what’s happening. The first is Tom Bilyeu’s interview with Robert Breedlove on the history of money and why Bitcoin is a thing. Even if you don’t care anything about crypto, please listen to the first part to understand why what the Federal Reserve is doing right now is morally wrong and further increasing the wealth divide.
The second podcast is Raoul Pal’s interview with Yat Siu on the importance of NFTs as digital property and what we should expect from the Internet in the next 12-18 months. Warning: this episode will blow your mind. Also, I think Real Vision forces you to sign up with an email. It’s free, but still, it’s worth it in my opinion.
And…if you signed up for that, make sure you check out my interview re: $TILT coin on Real Vision. Super fun.
NFTs as Game Changer
If you still don’t get that tokens and NFTs are a game changer, read this Coindesk article. A lot of people think of NFTs and immediately believe an NFT is the JPG. It’s not. The NFT is the proof of digital rights. That’s the difference.