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eBiz Weekly #85

Teens are making big money on this platform

This week:

  • Using Reddit to validate business ideas
  • Inflection Points
  • 3 other resources for generating business ideas
  • Blog written by GPT-3 goes viral
  • Holy heck this is hard
  • Skill up with these online courses
  • Teens are making big money on this platform
  • The most expensive app ever?
  • 74 Ways To Make Money Online
  • Momentos

Using Reddit to validate business ideas

Some food for thought in this Reddit post:

A few months ago, I saw a reddit post take off […] Hundreds of commenters […] were begging for access to this “python script”, that may or may not have existed.

But whether it existed, or was just a photoshopped picture with a landing page really didn’t matter. The demand for this product was validated to the nth degree before a commercial product even existed.

Could you use Reddit similarly to validate your own business idea? 🤔

Inflection Points

What about coming up with ideas in the first place?

Charles Ngo recently wrote about market inflections, which he considers the easiest way to think of million dollar ideas 💰

One of the six inflections he mentions is “platform inflection”:

think about all the businesses built off of YouTube, Facebook, the Apple App store, and Amazon.

A big takeaway here is timing.

It’s much harder now to build a YouTube audience than 10 years ago.
It’s much harder now to build an Instagram audience than 10 years ago.

Take a look and research what emerging platforms there are because there’s always an advantage in being a first mover.

Charles gives the example of Charli D’Amelio, who has 80+ million followers on TikTok despite starting from scratch in June 2019 🤯

Could Charli have built such a big following on YouTube or Instagram starting last year?


3 other resources for generating business ideas

1️⃣ Redditlist shows the fastest growing subreddits in the past 24 hours.

Are there products or services that you could provide to a community on that list?

2️⃣ Exploding Topics identifies rapidly growing topics before they take off. (CBD for dogs, anyone?)

3️⃣ I recently became a paid subscriber to Trends, really impressed with their private community and premium content for idea generation.

If you want to sign up, use this link to get a $100 discount. (There’s a $1 trial for the first two weeks.)

Blog written by GPT-3 goes viral

A college student named Liam Porr got his hands on GPT-3 – the latest and greatest artificial intelligence tool I wrote about a few weeks back – and used it to generate a bunch of blog posts, one of which reached #1 on Hacker News.

Out of more than 26,000 visitors to the blog, apparently only a handful noticed that it wasn’t written by a human 🤖

Liam writes:

This leaves room for a new kind of media company. One that’s fast and lean. The writing team will be small, but experts at bending GPT-3 to their will. It’s a 2006 Chevy Suburban vs a 2020 Tesla. You can’t mod your suburban into a Tesla, they’re completely different models.

GPT-3 also looks set to disrupt the movie industry.

Sounds like an inflection point to me 🚀

Holy heck this is hard

Chris McCormick writes that most of the projects posted to Indie Hackers don’t make much money.

Jon Yongfook tweeted in response:

I took an unscientific look at the products at the top and most have been around for *years*. I’ve said this before, but I think the biggest advantage you can have as a bootstrapped founder is the willingness to grind it out for a year plus before you start seeing returns.

Recent numbers released by Gumroad suggest similar: out of 18,454 people who tried selling a product on that platform, less than 1% earned more than $10k in July.

This is why I generally recommend that people get started working online via freelancing or a remote job. Those options aren’t sexy, but they’re far more reliable paths to earning a living online within weeks/months instead of years.

Get “job replacement income” flowing with freelancing or a remote job, then build something more scalable on the side. That way, you’re not under pressure to make it profitable ASAP.

Skill up with these online courses

Many Udemy courses are on sale this week with coupon code SKILLUPSALE. Some handpicked recommendations for you here.

Future Learn has lots of free online courses, like this one for digital marketing.

Reed.co.uk has tons of online courses including some with a job guarantee (they seem to be UK-only though).

Neil Patel recently released a new + free blogging course.

Acumen Academy has a bunch of (mostly free) courses starting soon, centered on storytelling, social impact, entrepreneurship, and design thinking.

Even if you don’t take any of those courses, pause for a minute to appreciate how fortunate we are to be able to learn pretty much anything online nowadays.

What a time to be alive 😍

Teens are making big money on this platform

It’s called Roblox, and the NYT describes it like so:

[Roblox is] an online gaming site and app with Lego-like characters and millions of virtual worlds to explore.

They apparently have more than 100 million monthly active users now, growing faster than ever due to the pandemic 📈

How do you make money on Roblox?

By developing games for the platform, according to the NYT article:

Roblox said it has more than 2 million developers, 345,000 of whom make money and who split their profits 50-50 with the company. Dozens of the top developers make millions of dollars, the company said, and top games in the past have generated an average of $2 million to $3 million a year.

20-year-old Anne Shoemaker is featured in the NYT article. She has earned $500k on the platform, most of it since March 💵

And CNBC reports that a 17-year-old released a game on Roblox back in 2017 and has seen it go on to earn “seven-figure profits.”

If you’re interested in becoming a Roblox game developer, this video looks like a good place to start 👀

The most expensive app ever?

Here’s a little e-commerce history I found amusing.

From Wikipedia:

I Am Rich is an iOS application developed by Armin Heinrich and which was distributed using the App Store. When launched, the screen only contains a glowing red gem and an icon that, when pressed, displays the following mantra in large text:

I am rich
I deserv [sic] it
I am good,
healthy & successful

The application is described as “a work of art with no hidden function at all”, with its only purpose being to show other people that they were able to afford it.

The app was released in 2008 and cost $999.99, the maximum price allowed on the App Store 🤑

Eight people bought the app – two were refunded – and Apple removed it from the App Store the day after its release.

74 Ways To Make Money Online

Next week I’ll be sending you an article with that title.

My team and I have been hard at work putting it together the past few months, trying to make it as clear and as comprehensive as possible. Accompanying the article will be ~80 fresh profiles of people making money online and how they do it.

If you’ve been struggling to start earning online, methinks you’ll get a lot out of this new resource. Looking forward to sharing it with you next Friday 👍

UPDATE: the article is now live 👉 see how to make money online


My latest batch of personal ramblings are posted on Patreon 👈

That’ll do it for this week.

Was there anything above that you found particularly useful or interesting?

I aim to pack these emails with the best tips, insights and opportunities for building your online business. Your feedback helps me do that.

Also, feel free to forward this email to a friend, or you can direct them to the online version here: https://ebizfacts.com/ebiz-weekly-85/

In case you missed em, here are the last three editions of eBiz Weekly:

Until next week, rock on with your legendary self 💪

Niall Doherty – Tbilisi, Georgia
eBiz Facts

By the way...

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