Discover more from Late Checkout - a Substack by Greg Isenberg
Building your Profitable Internet Empire
I’m launching something big today. It’s called Community Empire, it’s a membership to get you to create profitable companies powered by community. It includes:
Courses: 2 courses that teach you how to build an audience, community and help you find killer startup ideas for niches
Research: monthly email with 2-3 niches worth building for and why
Accountability: weekly sessions to keep you accountable.
Software: includes a free $99/month Skool subscription which is where I host all my communities. So, the membership is basically free lol
If you care about building cash-flowing companies powered by community, stop what you’re doing and sign up now before we raise the prices like crazy.
Obviously, it’s worth 10x the price and we can’t let everyone in at current prices.
Join before Sept 18th to lock in lifetime launch pricing and access to a live kickoff event with me.
Should you raise venture capital or not? Here’s my story….
I’ll never forget the moment I saw the Social Network movie in 2010.
I watched it and immediately felt I had found my life’s purpose.
Zuckerberg looked like a hero. Even with all his quirks, made it seem like he was on top of the world.
Inspired by that, I dropped out of university, packed up and left the familiar cold vibes of Quebec for the unfamiliar Mecca of tech of Silicon Valley.
My whole thing in my 20s was to build apps around social networking and communities.
Fast forward a bit, and by the time I hit 30:
I sold one of my startups to a PE firm.
I sold one startup to StumbleUpon. It was a social networking site bigger than Twitter and Reddit at one point. Started by the Founder of Uber.
I sold one startup to WeWork .
Along the way I advised companies like TikTok and Reddit on this very community approach
Sounds pretty cool, right? But I was pretty miserable.
Even though on the surface it looked like I was killing it, the returns I gave my investors weren’t skyrocketing. Plus, the pressure? Man, it felt like my heart rate was at a BPM of an Avicii song.
Here's what hit me:
Startups backed by Venture Capital (VC)? Super stressful and your bank account isn’t going to thank you.
Also, here’s the kicker with VC-backed startups: it's like fake freedom. You can still get kicked out of your own startup. I've seen it happen to some friends. But if you start something on your own dime? That’s all yours. Nobody can boot you out.
But the good news is I did find a gold mine.
I learned heaps about how powerful a community can be when you’re trying to kick off startup ideas and get the word out there.
I learned there were startup ideas hiding in plain sight on platforms like Reddit.
I started compiling playbooks and building my holding company around it.
I’ll share it with you (save this, print this out, forward this to a friend)
The playbook for building internet businesses:
1. Find an underserved niche
2. Find out what they love
3. Find out what they hate
4. Create content they’ll share with each other
5. Create an identity to foster community
6. Create a low cost product they’ll pay high costs for
7. Hire when it hurts
8.Don’t raise venture capital
If The Social Network movie was the golden era for social networks, this is the golden era for profitable community empires.
I’ll die on this hill…
Distribution might be king, but community is the kingdom.
Join Community Empire to take the plunge with us.
❤️ Greg’s bookmarks:
Mr. Beast's Feastables sent an email to 200,000 subs and it drove 2,000,000+ clicks. Interactive emails are worth paying attention to. Link
Stop hiring the resume, start hiring the attitude. I could not agree more. My best hires are unconventional yet have exceptional attitudes. Link
Boring cleaning home app built by a couple is generating $40k/month. Gets you thinking about other niche ideas… Link
My new podcast is LIVE with Julien Smith, NYTimes best-selling author and founder of Practice
We talked info diets, 7 year lifespans and OG content creators.
“Its kinda sad to still see indie folks still spending weeks or worse months building a product before making the first sale.” Could not agree more. Link
👋 Ways to work together?
Are you looking for design sprints around retention, acquisition and building community? Well, my agency Late Checkout is the leader in the model. We help design and your favorite apps & websites with this approach. Learn more here and fill out the form to get in touch.
Work with Boring Marketers. I’m astonished how they can drive revenue using SEO. Free call and you might learn a thing or two about using AI-assisted SEO to bring revenue for your business.
And enjoy Community Empire. I built this for you because so many people ask me how to build a profitable empire. Stick to this program and you can.