From sales job to Fortune 500 CEO

August 6, 2020

Plus: Two titans of remote healthcare are joining forces.
August 6, 2020
The Hustle
Daniel Wellington

It’s only Thursday, but this is a week-winning Shower Thought:

The Big Idea

More than a bad batch: Why everyone is ditching browser cookies

No one likes tracking cookies. Visit the website for that cat-poop spaceship just once, and internet ads will never let you live it down.

The cookie cartel insists the trackers are sweeter for everyone: Advertisers make more money, and readers get custom-baked ads.

But the conventional cookie wisdom is burning: When the Dutch media giant NPO banned cookies this winter, revenues shot up more than 60% in January and February.

The Dutch went retro

NPO’s old-school approach is called “contextual advertising.” Instead of targeting users, ads match the topic of an article. 

Reading about the bar-food surplus? NPO will sell you buffalo wings. 

It’s not the only company hungry for a cookie alternative. Publishers say Google acts like Cookie Monster — it gobbled a huge batch of the targeted-ad market, and it takes a revenue cut of more than 30%.

Condé Nast and The New York Times are testing cookie-free diets. They sell to you based on your reading history on their sites, not anywhere else.

This is how cookies crumble

  • A study from Google last year showed cookies boost ad revenue by 50+%, but recent research suggests the bounce is close to zilch.
  • Firefox this week rolled out a feature that would block a greater share of cookies.
  • Even Google might phase out 3rd-party cookies in Chrome. But Google itself can still use your Chrome history to serve you all the cat-poop spaceship ads it wants.
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5 stories to catch you up quick

1️⃣  Instagram’s TikTok copycat competitor is here — it’s called Reels. Here’s what you need to know about it.

2️⃣  Walmart is once again delaying the launch of Walmart+, its answer to Amazon Prime.

3️⃣  DoorDash meets 7-Eleven: The ‘Dash is opening 8 convenience stores to deliver household essentials in ~30 minutes.

4️⃣  Coming soon for power swipers: Tinder Platinum.

5️⃣  Two remote-health companies — Teladoc and Linvongo — just merged into a $37B megacorp.

And 5 more to delight you 

1️⃣  Did you know there’s an extremely strange world of Disney movie knockoffs? Press play on the crazy lineup of mockbusters.

2️⃣  The future of public transit in US cities? Rickshaws

3️⃣  What foods do American expats miss? Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, mac & cheese, and a “$10 breakfast that’s bigger than my entire face.” 

4️⃣  GPT-3 has competition: A Scottish bot just curated an entire virtual arts festival

5️⃣  A fascinating case study in emotional branding: Nestlé wanted to sell more coffee in Japan. To convert a nation of tea drinkers into coffee boosters, it started by making coffee-flavored Kit Kats.

A Stunning CV

What it looks like to ascend from sales to CEO at a Fortune 500 company

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This Swedish watch brand launched entirely on social media

Who needs traditional marketing? Not Daniel Wellington, apparently.

The brand was launched entirely on social media in 2011 — and they’ve sold more than 6 million watches since.

How? By trying not to be the next Rolex.

It all started on a mountain in Australia

Back in 2008, a 25-year-old Swede, Filip Tysander, was mountain climbing in Australia when he ran into a guy named Daniel Wellington. 

Wellington was wearing a high-cost Rolex on a low-cost, nylon strap.

It was a perfect spark for Tysander’s entrepreneurial spirit. In just a few years, he developed a line of affordable timepieces with a focus on interchangeable straps, so wearers can adapt to any occasion. 

The future lies in flexibility… 

Those very straps are the feature currently setting Daniel Wellington apart — their smart design allows wearers to change the look of their watch in no time and with minimal effort.

Experience this flexibility for yourself today and get a free strap with the purchase of any DW watch that features interchangeable straps. Oh, and use code HUSTLE15 to get an additional 15% off the whole shabang.

Get DW →
Senior moment

Boomfluencers are taking over social media

A new crew of influencers is here to give the youth of YouTube a run for its money. Literally.

It’s the vintage advantage

The 45+ crowd now accounts for 17% of YouTube video views. That’s a 55% increase between the second half of 2019 and the first half of 2020. And they’re skipping the teenyboppers to hear from their peers.

There’s serious cash on the table

Compensation varies, but 10 cents for every 1k views is average. It can be a full-time salary, or at least a way to pimp other projects.

Some of our other favs:

  • Tsuyoshi and Tomi Seki, AKA Bon and Pon, are Instagram icons of his-and-hers fashion. The couple, in their mid-60s, have 829k followers and 2 books.
  • Nonagenarian Helen Ruth Elam, AKA Baddie Winkle, is known for “Stealing Your Man Since 1928.” With 183.9k followers, this spicy Twitter personality has landed sponcon deals with Coffee Mate and Jack in the Box.

Grand dame? More like grand daaaaaaamn.

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A video game vigilante is coming for your cheats

Justice has a new name: GamerDoc. His mission? Take out the video-game cheaters. 

What in the Donkey Kong is going on?

Cheat codes for games like Overwatch and Valorant can bring hackers hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

But when players cheat, some start to question the integrity of esport pros… and cheating zaps the fun of recreational gaming.

“(F)or that to be ruined because of some kid who used his mom’s credit card to buy cheats just sucks,” GamerDoc told Vice.

Game over, punk

A crew of volunteer cheat spotters collects evidence of shenanigans. GamerDoc sends the deets to game developers, who patch the problem and ban the baddies.

GamerDoc’s made plenty of enemies — he says he gets regular death threats — but he’s also caught a LOT of cheaters. He estimates his reports have gotten 50k to 70k cheaters booted.

That’s definitely a high score. 

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Buzzy Business

5 facts you might not know about the founder of TikTok

This week, the founder of ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, has both attacked the US stance on TikTok and defended its potential sale to Microsoft. Some in China have called him a “traitor.” 

Right now, Zhang Yiming is one of the world’s most powerful founders — and he’s got a rich backstory:

  • He launched his career with a travel startup called Kuxun, which sold to TripAdvisor for a reported $12m+
  • This isn’t Zhang’s first Microsoft rodeo: Zhang worked there in 2008. But he got out fast because “it stifled his creativity,” according to The Wall Street Journal.
  • When Zhang founded ByteDance in 2012, its first product was Toutiao, an AI news aggregator that skyrocketed up China’s App Store charts.
  • Zhang used the app’s reach to help locate thousands of missing persons.
  • When he launched TikTok — under its Chinese name Douyin — Zhang required management to make videos. 

Whoever got the least likes would have to drop and do pushups. 

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The Hustle Says

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If you’re into investing, you’re going to want to get in on this while there is still time. Flippy is an AI assistant chef cooking up food for $3/hr who may just be the future of the quick service restaurant industry.*

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