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FAILURE MY BIGGEST FAILURE in the app business (compelling intro for my book?)

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BrooklynHustle

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While the primary intent of the short book I am writing is to share actionable infomation on app business success....

(if you missed it, you can find that thread here: Digital/Web - Wish you had apps w/10 MILLION+ downloads?)



I thought it might provide some interesting context, humor, excitement to include a few of the stories that go along with my learnings as well.



Do you think the following failure story would make a compelling intro?

Am I better off leaving stories out, and making the book purely informational?

Please let me know what you think.




MY BIGGEST FAILURE IN THE APP BUSINESS

My biggest lesson in the business probably comes from one of my biggest failures in the business... which I would not fully realize until after the fact.

LONG STORY SHORT:

  1. Long term value >> Short term profits

    When possible, you want to give your users the best experience and retain them over the long term.

  2. Never overvalue your smarts or success. Always remain open to learning.


2013 - I had an app that was on top of the charts getting up to 80,000 downloads per day. A colleague with more experience in the industry (even though he was younger) gave me counsel that I should ease up on the ads so that I could keep users around for the long term.... creating my valuable platform.

I thought about it briefly and said NO THANKS! I'm making THOUSAND$ per day.... you must've lost your mind! :rofl:

I just knew in my heart I was smarter than him...

Plus I was just better than him. I knew how to get my games to rank at will, so he just didn't know how to do it like I could do it.

Turns out he was right.

My game eventually lost steam, and I was indeed able to launch games to the top at will, as expected...

Until I wasn't.

Apple was in charge and they change their algorithms as they please.

My old tricks didn't work any more.

I went on to discover new tricks, but that is not the story here...

A year later in 2014, a French studio called Ketchapp launched a viral game to the top of the charts.

Rather than blast their users with ads, they followed a strategy eerily similar to what my colleague had advised a year earlier.

They lightly monetized while funneling their users from game to game to game,

sometimes launching up to one game per week and building up a loyal base of 100s of millions of users in the process.

In 2016, after just 2 years of existence. Ketchapp was acquired by Ubisoft for a rumored $200M - $350M.

LESSON LEARNED! :rofl:
 

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Last edited:

BrooklynHustle

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While the primary intent of the book that I am writing is to share actionable infomation on what I have learned about the app business....

(you can find that thread here: Digital/Web - Wish you had apps w/10 MILLION+ downloads?)



I thought it might provide some interesting context, humor, excitement to include a few of the stories that go along with my learnings as well.



Do you think the following failure story would make a compelling intro?

Am I better off leaving stories out, and making the book purely informational?

Please let me know what you think.




MY BIGGEST FAILURE IN THE APP BUSINESS

My biggest lesson in the business probably comes from one of my biggest failures in the business... which I would not fully realize until after the fact.

LONG STORY SHORT:

  1. Long term value >> Short term profits

    When possible, you want to give your users the best experience and retain them over the long term.

  2. Never overvalue your smarts. Remain open to learning.


2013 - I had an app that was on top of the charts getting up to 80,000 downloads per day. A colleague with more experience in the industry (even though he was younger) gave me counsel that I should ease up on the ads so that I could keep users around for the long term.... creating my valuable platform.

I thought about it briefly and said NO THANKS! I'm making THOUSAND$ per day.... you must've lost your mind! :rofl:

I just knew in my heart I was smarter than him...

Plus I was just better than him. I knew how to get my games to rank at will, so he just didn't know how to do it like I could do it.

Turns out he was right.

My game eventually lost steam, and I was indeed able to launch games to the top at will, as expected...

Until I wasn't.

Apple was in charge and they change their algorithms as they please.

My old tricks didn't work any more.

I went on to discover new tricks, but that is not the story here...

A year later in 2014, a French studio called Ketchapp launched a viral game to the top of the charts.

Rather than blast their users with ads, they followed a strategy eerily similar to what my colleague had advised a year earlier.

They lightly monetized while funneling their users from game to game to game,

sometimes launching up to one game per week and building up a loyal base of 100s of millions of users in the process.

In 2016, after just 2 years of existence. Ketchapp was acquired by Ubisoft for a rumored $200M - $350M.

LESSON LEARNED! :rofl:
By the way, I recognize they had to do quite a number of things right beyond their initial decision around monetization in order to build such a valuable company...

Nonetheless, the lesson still sticks with me.
 

hungryhippocampi

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In my opinion -- always include stories if possible. They are entertaining, reinforce the information, and illustrate how the information can be applied. Your story above was great and shows cause and effect. I also like the hey, here's a lesson learned from failure and the counterpoint of here's someone who applied that lesson in their business and the successful outcome.
 

Nily

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Always include the stories. Readers can pick up gems and learn from them.

Here's an example~

I watched a Jackie Chan video on LinkedIn today. It was about his career. The comment section was filled with waves of passion bullshit but I picked up one thing in the video. At the lowest point of his life, Jackie worked as a construction worker in Australia (I guess this is his FTE moment).

Upon returning to the industry, he combined slapstick comedy and martial art in his movies. His career took off with the release of the "Rumble in the Bronz". He was 42.

Above is just an FTE example that drives the entrepreneur journey.

Make sure your stories are worth the reader's attention.
 
Last edited:

BrooklynHustle

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In my opinion -- always include stories if possible. They are entertaining, reinforce the information, and illustrate how the information can be applied. Your story above was great and shows cause and effect. I also like the hey, here's a lesson learned from failure and the counterpoint of here's someone who applied that lesson in their business and the successful outcome.
Thanks, man... I was thinking along the same lines.

They say our human brains are wired to receive information from stories, and I believe it.
 

The EL Maven

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Catastrophic opens are good. It's the "hero in danger" opening and the goal is to leave the reader wanting to figure out how the hero will get out of danger. If the opening scene comes from the middle of the story, the reader gets to find out how the hero got into trouble AND how he gets out. It's a good strategy.

If I were you, I'd be as vague as possible on what caused the collapse and be as crystal clear on the collapse itself. That way, in the later chapters, you can reveal the causes and all the lessons you learned subsequently.
 

BrooklynHustle

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Catastrophic opens are good. It's the "hero in danger" opening and the goal is to leave the reader wanting to figure out how the hero will get out of danger. If the opening scene comes from the middle of the story, the reader gets to find out how the hero got into trouble AND how he gets out. It's a good strategy.

If I were you, I'd be as vague as possible on what caused the collapse and be as crystal clear on the collapse itself. That way, in the later chapters, you can reveal the causes and all the lessons you learned subsequently.
Thanks for the feedback, man...

Your phrasing reminds me of the book PITCH ANYTHING...

"Bring a man to the edge of the jungle..."

upload_2018-1-24_19-34-2.png
 

BrooklynHustle

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Bon Appetit

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Hi @BrooklynHustle ,

In my opinion, it will be a good idea to put failure story of yours in your book since it will kind of reassure your readers who are seeking for information about app business.

Your failure story will tell them that, even if you have failed in your past, you are successful today. It will tell your readers that is not an easy path, that there are obstacles in the process from idea to conceive an app. It will tell your readers what not to do which is as good as (better than?) what to do.

That fact that you failed before, and you are successful today will tell the readers that this path is difficult but not impossible. It will tell the readers that failing is not incorrect and in fact it can be part of the process.

As a futur reader myself, if I will fail while trying to develop my app business, I will think about you as a successful entrepreneur and your past failures stories, and it will give me courage to move forward.

Maybe more details about the failures might be good, what was the mistake, how did you deal with is, how much it cost you in time/money/energy, what did you learn, how is your adaptation afterward.

(sorry for my broken english I am french)
 

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BrooklynHustle

Gold Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
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Speedway Pass
Apr 3, 2014
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37
DMV
Hi @BrooklynHustle ,

In my opinion, it will be a good idea to put failure story of yours in your book since it will kind of reassure your readers who are seeking for information about app business.

Your failure story will tell them that, even if you have failed in your past, you are successful today. It will tell your readers that is not an easy path, that there are obstacles in the process from idea to conceive an app. It will tell your readers what not to do which is as good as (better than?) what to do.

That fact that you failed before, and you are successful today will tell the readers that this path is difficult but not impossible. It will tell the readers that failing is not incorrect and in fact it can be part of the process.

As a futur reader myself, if I will fail while trying to develop my app business, I will think about you as a successful entrepreneur and your past failures stories, and it will give me courage to move forward.

Maybe more details about the failures might be good, what was the mistake, how did you deal with is, how much it cost you in time/money/energy, what did you learn, how is your adaptation afterward.

(sorry for my broken english I am french)
Really appreciate the feedback!

It seems like most people agree with you, so I will go with that option
 

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