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Startup Ideas Recap of My First Million Podcast đź’µ Episode #102

The latest startup ideas Sam and Shaan discussed on the August 19, 2020 episode with time stamps and links


Wes Kimbell

Aug 19 2020

4 mins read



You’re only one idea away 🦄 

Share Everyday Startup

2:45 (affiliate driven company kinda like NerdWallet)

  • Started in 2000 before the Internet was widely used
  • The guy who started it charged 11 British pounds every two weeks to get the best mortgages reviews
  • First year made very little money. Same in second year
  • But in 2002 made $2M in revenue with $600,000 in profit
  • In 2003 $16M in sales with $2M in profit
  • 2004 $47M in revenue and $15M in profit
  • 2005 $56M in revenue and $16M in profit
  • Now its $400M / year in revenue and $100M in profit
  • The model is crazy. It’s basically affiliate to make a lot of this money.
  • You basically talk about which product is best and you get a cut of the sales if they click through and buy the product / service you are reviewing
  • Similar to NerdWallet
  • This business model works consistently in a variety of sectors
  • It scales so smoothly and makes so much cash
  • Not many people know how big these are
  • If you want to do the affiliate model like this, ask yourself: 1) What’s something a large amount of people want (how many people want it), 2) how much does the product cost (because you earn a percent of the sale), 3) how often do they need it and, 4) how hard is it to rank on Google search SEO and 5) what is the competitive advantage?
  • Sam does not think there are many niches that could do this.
  • NerdWallet ranks well on Google but does not really have a brand.
  • You could start an affiliate company but make a good brand like Wire Cutter or Credit Karma did. Credit Karma created a “product” and a brand that still links to others so they get the affiliate revenue.
  • Sam thinks a lot of Youtubers who review items could get into this
  • Shaan says he would not personally go into this space because it looks like it takes 10-20+ years to get this successful. He would love to own one, though. Or Shaan would go through Youtube search traffic ranking instead of Google because it’s the second largest search engine and easier to rank and start.
  • Sam argues that yes, they take a while to build but once you build them they snowball and very successful. Sam thinks if it takes a long time to build then it would take a long time to kill.
  • Shaan thinks another angle that would work is model the affiliate business after Mr. Money Mustache that creates high quality and PERSONAL content instead of just putting out content to try and rank on Google that’s non-personal and cold.

18:40 Shopify for video conferencing…Shopify for anyone delivering a service by video 

  • Covid has created a boom in e-commerce as a percentage of retail over time
  • This year around 35% of retail sales are from e-commerce
  • Shopify and Amazon have benefited big time from this
  • Shaan thinks the same thing will happen for video services or any service
  • Buying and selling services will be big: Doctors, lawyers, therapist, trainers, tutors, coaches all slowly moving online
  • 7 Cups of Tea (therapy that makes $15M to $100M), Talk Space and Better Health
  • They took the therapy service digital and a mobile app and now $15M to $100M in revenue
  • Huge amount of services are being stitched together over Zoom (let’s call this “V-Commerce”).
  • Shaan thinks there’s an opportunity to build a Shopify for video conferencing…Shopify for anyone delivering a service by video
  • It will be a video conversation one-on-one, one to many, or groups
  • For example: Shaan runs a mastermind group. People pay him so three time a month he does a call with 3 different groups. He uses Gumroad or Stripe for payments and a website to describe the company, he uses email and Google Calendar to organize it, and Zoom to do the call.
  • Shaan thinks there is an opportunity to put all this together in one app to make thinks easy—sorta like Shopify does for e-commerce
  • Why don’t personal trainers, therapist, doctors, school tutors, etc all do this?

25:25 Shaan talks about his e-commerce company he’s making with his wife

32:30 Instagram handle that does memes acquired for $85M by Warner Music Group

42:10 UPDATE: Gym Shark an athletic/ English (UK) apparel company

  • Started by a 19 year old, currently 27
  • Private Equity invested 20% of the business for a $1.3 billion
  • 300 million British pounds in sales

44:00 Grunt Style apparel company focused on conservatives (politically) and USA

  • an incredible e-commerce business focused on a niche / community that you love and are passionate about
  • Shaan calls this “America’s gift shop”
  • 1 million followers on Instagram
  • This is a good example of how you can create a niche and do something really good with it
  • According to the founder they do over $100M in sales
  • Sam thinks their margins are really good

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