Here’s the deal.
Glenn Yarbrough has built his house of the rising sun. It’s a house you can walk through, a house which rises up on its own when you least expect it, a house that encourages you to stay in it and spend time there.
His house is an upcoming feature of Quip.com, and it’s also part of Quip’s strategy to grow rapidly as an e-mail service (at least as much as any other product in the world would be).
Glenn knows that a lot of people will hate this feature (it was his idea in the first place), but he doesn’t care because he is obsessed with building a better email experience for everyone. He wants people to have more reasons than just email, more reasons to stay informed about what matters to them and more reasons to use Quip for everything from managing social networks to managing their daily lives.
If you think about it, that’s powerful enough reason for almost anyone. Especially when viewed from another perspective: The goal here is getting more people into your product every day so they can enjoy your product every day too!
Glenn Yarbrough was a quarterback and coach in the 1960s. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1991.
In 1965 he led the University of Oregon Ducks to an undefeated season and their first Rose Bowl appearance. The following year, he led the team to its first Southeastern Conference championship, a 14-0 record, as well as a Rose Bowl appearance. During his career at Oregon, he set numerous Oregon records and led Oregon to seven bowl games, including four consecutive bowls from 1970-72.
By 1968 he had become one of the best quarterbacks in the nation and was sought after by several NFL teams for that reason. He was drafted by the Baltimore Colts in 1969, but ended up missing out on an opportunity to play quarterback for Jim Brown because of a hip injury sustained during training camp that year. Instead, he was named co-captain of both offense and defense, along with future Hall of Fame player Art Rooney II (who himself went on to become head coach at Notre Dame). He went on to win two more championships with the Colts during his three years there before retiring as a player after 1977 (he finished with 5,300 passing yards and 42 touchdowns).
I have been thinking a lot recently about the value people gain from listening to music. I’ve tried to put a number on it in terms of dollars and cents, but I think that’s not a particularly useful way to do it. Because, as everyone knows, songs don’t actually cost much.
As an example, let’s look at the song “piano man.” It is probably around $0.10 USD (at Amazon) which means that for every dollar spent on this song, you get 7 cents back in the bank:
$0.10 × 7 = $0.0077
At first glance this seems like a small number, but if you work with some numbers (like my colleague shows here), you can arrive at a similar result:
$0.10 × 7 = $5 (5 cents)
The second one is actually an average case for my colleagues Nathan MacKinnon (@nathanwcm) and Ryan Mckenney (@ryanmckenney). They find that 60% of their listeners are drawn from their audience who are likely to share similar tastes! This means that if they wanted to reach out more broadly to niche markets they could well make better use of marketing dollars than if they focused on broadening their audience by building an iTunes library or pitching web ads against Google search results about your product! People who want music (who want other things too!) are very different from people who just want money; so we should be careful when comparing apples with oranges here!
Hi, I’m Glenn Yarbrough (aka “The Rising Sun”), your marketing guru. I’ve worked at many startups and I’ve worked with many of the best & worst ones. Here are some tips for building a great user experience.
People have many different ways of viewing things. Some people will look at the history of a company, others will look at the company’s products, some people will read about the company, and others will watch videos or quick clips on YouTube. I’ve found that there are certain ways of presenting information that work better than others:
1. Write an interesting and compelling introduction that is easy to consume and comprehend (and remember).
2. Understand the user’s needs before they need to buy or use your product.
3. Use a variety of mediums to communicate your brand message to users (e-mail, a blog, a video) and be sure that each medium is being used in its proper place (e.g., websites linked from e-mails should not be placed on blogs).
4. Position your product or service as something people can customize and make unique (e.g., “customized web pages”) or are able to make unique by using search engines (e.g., “customized search engine results”).
5. Describe your product in terms customers can relate to: it should make them feel like they are doing something similar to what you are doing; it should be at least somewhat useful for them; if it works for them, then it must work for other people too; and so on and so forth…
Awards and nominations
If you are an entrepreneur and any of the following words are in your title, you should consider yourself a winner!
1. How do we communicate our vision and what will it take to get there?
2. What does success look like for us?
3. What would we say about our process for judging it?
4. How do we keep track of who is part of the team, who is still supporting us, and who is slowing down, but who is not yet ready to step into the spotlight?
5. Who is our “biggest fan” (the key audience) and what do they think of us? What have they done or are doing that gives me hope that my work could help them?
Glenn Yarbrough’s house of the rising sun is a stunning example of the way a creative can be the key to business success. His design is simple and elegant, but he has been able to combine it with an incredible amount of innovation to provide an experience that is unmatched by any other products in its price range.
Glenn Yarbrough has been abstracting and unifying aspects of his life, vision, and philosophy into one single experience. Not just any experience either, but one that people can take advantage of to make things better. He does this through a simple concept:
Create what you love Make it affordable for all Create something that will change your life (something like, say, a music app)
One thing this really showcases is what makes Glenn stand out from most other designers out there (and I think it’s because he doesn’t try to be anything else). He just wants to bring people together and share their lives with them (through art), and let them create content together (like audio or video). This is not meant to be some sort of corporate product — it’s about creating experiences for people, so they can create content that can be shared with others. You see this in his design as well:
I want my products to take part in people’s lives because they are part of their own lives. I want them to do what they do because they do it on purpose. I want my products to change people’s lives because they change my life every day. I want my products to live on forever because I made them first
This isn’t always easy or cheap though — especially if you’re trying to get started early on as he has done — but if you find yourself getting stuck trying to figure out how much work you need on new features or features you didn’t even think about before now…. then maybe you should start paying attention…
I’ve been reading a lot of stuff lately about external links, and I thought I’d share some thoughts on the topic with you.
There are two main ways of measuring how many external links to take:
1) How many of your own pages have external links? That is, how many links in your Google News widget are from your site? For example, if you are on Facebook and you link to an article by BuzzFeed, that link should be tracked there; if it has no other external ones (e.g., Twitter), that one should be tracked elsewhere.
2) How many people click on your sites from outside sources, such as Google search results or Wikipedia? If the number is zero, then you failed at #1. If it’s more than 100%, then you succeeded at #2.
The first way is much easier to track, but it does not account for all possible sources of clicks (such as search engines like Google and Bing). The second method is more relevant for a company like us who are trying to build a brand or develop a product-market fit (i.e., we have places where we have customers and influencers who will likely read our news stories).
In practice this means we measure:
• Number of pages linked from inside our own site (as above)
• Number of clicks that result in the creation of an internal page (as above)
The trick here is to sort those two metrics into different buckets so that you can see where your efforts fall on each axis. For example: if 50% of our traffic comes from within our own sites and 50% comes from outside sources (which includes social networks), we’d want to track the latter metric differently than how we track the former one. This allows us to see where our efforts really lie on both sides and makes it easy for us to compare them over time once they have become more aligned with each other.
Now let’s look at some examples:
1) We try hard not to use Facebook ads for any site that isn’t directly related to CTO Austin Hill himself. Every single one that exists today doesn’t was made in 2014; none were made prior to March 2015; none were made after July 2015; even one was made after last January! Most social media sites make money off ads — Facebook makes money off ads — so why would they need CTO Hill’s help