Updated Landing Page

4 months
In an effort to focus more on creators and bring value to them, we have updated our landing page. There's a lot of very exciting work ahead. Here's to helping creative entrepreneurs establish viable businesses, so they can finally quit their "day jobs" and spend their time doing what they love!

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Spotify (Anchor.fm) is the latest to expand creator monetization

5 months
Spotify announced yesterday that they will be enabling podcasters to create subscription options for listeners, a direct hit to Patreon. They are recognizing the need for more monetization options for content creators beyond advertising. You have to wonder, at what point will the market get tired of subscriptions...

Another interesting announcement was a deep integration with Wordpress, to make it easy for blogs to be transcribed into audio form for podcast distribution, or to transcribe podcast episodes into a text-based blog post. Interesting tools, especially the latter. However, the last thing I want to hear is a mechanical voice reading a blog post for me, but it could be good for vision impaired audiences (if they don't already have text to voice capability already?)

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The Creator Economy Middle Class

John Dodson 5 months
I recently came across a great article that really hit on points that I have been thinking about recently. I especially liked the term "creator economy middle class" because it really hits on problems I see on the internet today. Our entire focus at Pivvt is on this group and their audience.

Over the next couple of weeks, I will be touching on the ten points discussed in the article.

For now, here is the provided summary for the article:

Right now, the creative economy on platforms like YouTube and Instagram looks a lot like the U.S. economy — there are a few big winners and a lot of people hustling to make a living and barely getting by. But it doesn’t have to be like this. Platforms can be — and sometimes are — the new vehicles for the American Dream, offering a stable, middle-class income and the promise of upward mobility. Fulfill that potential, however, is a choice: Platforms can decide how they dole out exposure and rewards, and whether they broaden users’ exposure or create filter bubbles with rigid hierarchies. The author recommends 10 policies platforms can adopt to broaden opportunity: 1) focus on content types with lower replay value, 2) serve heterogeneity in user preferences & empower niche, 3) recommend content algorithmically with an element of randomness, 4) facilitate collabs and community, 5) provide capital investment to up-and-coming creators, 6) decouple creator payouts from audience demographic, 7) allow creators to capitalize on superfans, 8) create passive (or almost-passive) income opportunities for creators, 9) offer a form of Universal Creative Income (UCI), and 10) provide creator education and training.

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A focus on the Creative Economy

5 months
Patreon led the charge, then Substack, and others followed. Creators are breaking away from big publications and turning to other apps to monetize their content independently. YouTube has a subscription service for channels, and now it appears that LinkedIn is getting into the space as well.

The creative economy is the future of small business, and the big tech companies are noticing.

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Who are your favorite creators?

John Dodson 6 months
🔥 Independent content creators are the future of media. YouTube channels and podcasts have blown up in recent years, and there is so much amazing content available. With the abundance of content comes obscurity. It is hard to discover great creators because there is just so many of them out there. BUT where are they?

👀 I want to discover great content creators. Who are the creators that you check out regularly, whether if it's watching their videos, reading their articles, or listening to their podcast? Who are these hidden gems that you follow, whether once a week, or even every day?

⬇️ Please fill out the form below. I am working on compiling a list and will share it at the end of the survey. This survey will be open for just one week, so please submit your answers and share the link to this post (or survey) to your friends.

🙏🏼 Thank you so much for your input!


(The form asks for an email address; your address will NOT be shared. I will send a follow-up at the end of the survey, and will also be sending a thank you note to each person that responds via the form.)

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New landing page launched

John Dodson 6 months
Just released: An updated version of our landing page. We hope that it does a good job of sharing with you what we do and how we can help you.

Use one of the buttons on the page to let us know if you would like to get started!

The Internet, For You

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Digital advertising has broken the internet

John Dodson 6 months

Background

I spent almost two and a half years working in digital advertising at Yahoo and Rakuten. I learned a lot as I managed ad-tech platforms on both the demand and supply side of the ecosystem—but I struggled because I hated our products. I hated how online ads work.

During my last months at Rakuten, I spent time doing research on ad blocking and how publishers were dealing with the threat to their revenue model. During that period, it was very clear to me that it was a losing battle and that the fundamental model of digital advertising was broken. I left the industry a short time later, and the first thing I did after leaving was install an ad blocker on my laptop.

Wrong Incentives

The use of online advertising has helped to keep content "free" but it never has been free. Users are the product of online businesses, and advertisers their customers. Advertisers spend a lot of money to get their ads in front of users, often using data to target who is most likely to click on the ad or buy something.

Ads are how web sites and apps make a lot of their revenue, so their incentive is to get users to view and click on as many ads as possible. This has led to a large amount of click bait articles full of ads, articles split up into multiple pages with new ads for each "next" you click, and an increase of volume of content over quality.

The desire to serve more ads has also led to apps and sites focusing on addictive behaviors to keep users in their app for as long as possible. This is why the feed is the primary user interface you see in apps today, like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and yes, even LinkedIn. Once you open up the app, it is easy to find yourself endlessly scrolling, and scrolling, and scrolling.

Need for Change

This is the very reason why Pivvt is focusing on this industry. The negative impacts of what advertising has left us with is prevalent, including tech addiction, ideology bubbles, and depression. The internet has so much potential for good, but the current model has led to the degradation of our wellbeing as humans.

We believe that there is a better way, and that we do not need to settle for what we have. The big players are deeply entrenched in this advertising model, but our goal is to break away from that with a solution that creates value for everyone: Users, creators, and sponsors/advertisers.

Follow along our startup journey as we build out a better internet, for everyone.

Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

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A new direction for Pivvt

John Dodson 7 months
If any of you have been paying attention to what has been going on here (you three know who you are), we have been hyper focused on college sports. Our goal was to create a community of college sports fans by helping schools to raise money.

COVID brought on a disruption so large that every school was worried about revenue to cover 2020 expenses. However, with that came smaller budgets and less willingness to try something new. So I decided to make a pivot for Pivvt, to open up our focus.

Starting today, December 1, we are opening up the focus on college athletic departments to creators. These are people that create content for an audience. Our goal is to help those two groups connect in ways that other apps have not effectively managed to do.

Here's to our future. It is time to create a better internet experience.

Photo by Simon Berger, Unsplash

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Updates from NCAA for winter eligibility, transfers, NIL

9 months
There's a lot to unpack here, but the NCAA made some sweeping decisions that impact college sports in the short term and long term. That includes an extra year of eligibility for winter sports, a proposal for immediate eligibility for transfers, and the removal of requirements for 2020-21 bowl eligibility.

Most importantly, they have clarified their proposed rules for name, image, and likeness, which would be set for voting in the coming year. That is unless Congress does not step in and create law that would supersede any bylaws that the NCAA creates for itself. The debate and scramble continues...

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Insider Exclusive

Customer #1 now live!

9 months
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