You don’t need confidence, just contribution. | Derek Sivers

I’d like to share an awesome post from Derek Sivers. 

You can (and should) subscribe to his blog/newsletter and check out anything by him, especially the TED talks

This bit is also from the book “Hell Yeah or No”

This is poignant stuff, and fits with some things I’ve been sharing on social media today. Chris Brogan wrote in his newsletter that “Purpose plus movement is life”.. we had a discussion on the equation. Life without movement like breathing would not work, “purpose” includes a lot of figuring out what we really value. 

You can live without examining your values and direction. But would you want to? 

Regardless of your life goals, value or what you deem “success” to be, can we agree with Derek and say we have to do the doing? 


You don’t need confidence, just contribution. 2018-08-06

Years ago, I was so confident, and so naive. I was so sure that I was right and everyone else was wrong.

Unfortunately I was lucky and got successful, so that kept me ignorant of my shortcomings.

I sold my company, felt ready to do something new, and started to learn. But the more I learned, the more I realized how little I knew, and how dumb-lucky I had been.

I continued learning until I felt like an absolute idiot. By then I was paralyzed, unable to create anything new.

I’d start to make things, but then see how stupid they revealed me to be, so I’d stop. I lost all confidence. I spent a few years completely stuck.

Eventually, some new thoughts helped.

Learning without doing is wasted. If I don’t use what I learn, then it was pointless. How horrible to waste those hundreds of hours I spent learning, and not turn it into action. Like throwing good food in the trash: it’s morally wrong. At least I should share what I’ve learned. Really I need to use it to improve my life and create something.

This isn’t about me. My self and how I feel now doesn’t matter. Nobody is judging me, because nobody is thinking of me. They are just looking for things to improve their own life. The public me is not the real me anyway, so if they ridicule my public persona, that’s fine. When I’m contributing something to the world, I’m happy and don’t need recognition.

The work is the point, and my work is unique. If I can do something that people find useful, then I should. It doesn’t matter if it’s a masterpiece or not, as long as I enjoy it. I’ve got my own weird angle on things that’s a useful counter-melody in the big orchestra of life.

So I’m glad my old confidence is gone, because it thought I was right, and maybe even great. But I quit that contest.

Now I aim to make my work — my contribution to the world — just unique and useful.

© 2018 Derek Sivers. Copy & share: sivers.org/contrib

This article originally appeared at: https://sivers.org/contrib.

56 Influencers Share Their Biggest Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

I was honored to be featured in this interesting take on influencer marketing.


56 Influencers Share Their Biggest Mistakes and How to Avoid Them [Expert Roundup]

In 2017, influencer marketing saw an exponential growth of 198%. A lot of this can be attributed to its efficacy in building brand awareness and improving business sales.

A perfectly executed influencer marketing campaign looks incredible and does a whole lot of good for brands. An objective third party might even call it effortless and organic.

But let’s be frank.

There is no playbook. No rules or guidelines. No framework that you can use to design that perfect campaign.

Influencer marketing is a tricky landscape to navigate with its ever-changing nature and emerging trends.

Each day presents new challenges which leave even the best of influencers stumped about how to improve engagement.

What works for one brand may not work for another. This uncertainty leaves them more susceptible to making mistakes.

While some influencer mistakes are more common than others, it’s important to be aware of all of them. After all, only when you’re aware of any pitfalls, can you avoid them.

Typical Influencer Mistakes

Before we move on to hear from the experts, let’s take a quick peek at some common influencer mistakes.

Saying “Yes” to Everything

I’ve seen this a few times with new influencers. They tend to say yes to any brands that approach them without considering whether or not the brand aligns with their niche.

Other than that, they also tend to agree with anything the brand or agency tells them to do.

It’s important to question whether the brand and the content a brand is suggesting will fit well with your audience.

Ignoring FTC Guidelines

Another common influencer mistake I see new and experienced influencers make is ignoring the FTC guidelines.

According to the guidelines, it’s critical that brands and influencers disclose their paid partnerships to consumers to ensure they make informed decisions.

Not everyone understands which partnerships call for a #ad or #paid hashtag.

Buying Fake Follower and Engagement

The biggest influencer mistake an influencer can make is buying fake followers and engagement. Whether it’s through comment pods or using bots, either way, it’s just wrong.

I understand that it’s a numbers game, but using fake numbers only tarnishes your reputation and that of the industry.

There are many other mistakes influencers make. The important thing is learning from your mistakes and those of others.

That’s the aim of this expert roundup. So, without further ado, lets hear from the experts about the biggest influencer mistakes they’ve made in the past, and how you can avoid them.

Read the full compilation here

Gfycat Launches “1st Annual Gfycat GIF Wars”

Gfycat, the leading user-generated GIF platform, today announced the “1st Annual Gfycat GIF Wars” to celebrate its 2.5 million creators across 160 countries. The contest, which gives six grand-prize winners a trip to Las Vegas, aims to highlight how creators are the true drivers of Internet culture. 

Gfycat’s creators rely on its editing software and sharing tools to create highly-engaging content, thus entertaining Gfycat’s 180 million monthly visitors. Several big-name channels from different sectors, including gaming, food, and science, have partnered with Gfycat to successfully drive their marketing operations. To celebrate them — along with the world’s unidentified creators — Gfycat also recently launched the “Creator Spotlight Series.” These milestones and initiatives manifest true progress in Gfycat’s mission — to cultivate content creation by the people, for the people.

More than any other segment, Gfycat’s gaming creators drive the incredible volume of content uploaded to the platform. 78% of Gfycat’s creators identify as gamers, whether or not they primarily upload gaming content, so Gfycat has made particular effort to highlight them with new products for gaming creators.

Gfycat’s 2.5 million creators have produced 40+ million GIFs to date, reaching the platform’s 180 million monthly viewers. Although Gfycat is a U.S. based website, its creators hail from cities around the world. In fact, the Republic of Korea, Sweden, and Russia are among the 10 countries with the most GIF creators — showing the international reach of the platform.

Several influential creators from various sectors have joined Gfycat as channel partners. Famous gamer @amustycow gained a serious following after using Gfycat to share high-quality gaming GIFs. @sooperdave, an animator who went viral for giving inanimate objects a face and character, was an early adopter of Gfycat. Considering it the perfect way to convey his unique sense of humor, he still uses the platform as a gallery for his work today. Even @KNSfarm, a goat farm in Madison, Texas, exponentially increased their audience engagement when they started distributing GIFs on their social media channels — they accumulated over 10 million views on Gfycat and have become the number one creator of goat GIFs on the Internet.

Gfycat launched the “Creator Spotlight Series” to celebrate these creators. The series  interviews influential short-form content creators to highlight how they deliver immersive, visual experiences. Matthew Vandeputte, a timelapse photographer, says GIFs are the best vehicles for sharing his art with the world.

“I use Gfycat to extract the most visually appealing shots of my timelapse photography. I tried out ‘GIF Brewery’ [for creating GIF reactions] and literally, within 30 seconds, I could transform a bit of video that I’d shot into a GIF. High-quality, customizable, with custom frame rate and everything. And I’ve since then forwarded to so many people to use that as a GIF creation tool for their video content,” said Vandeputte.

Gfycat’s launch of the “GIF Wars” contest is the company’s way of honoring internet culture creators. The contest invites GIF artists to submit original GIFs in multiple categories — including Best Reaction GIF, Best Celebrity GIF, and Best Video Game GIF. Determined by a combination of a popularity and judges’ vote, the first place winner in each category receives a trip to Las Vegas to meet other GIF creators. There will also be three additional Judges’ Prize winners, from any category, who will receive a trip to Vegas as well.

Gfycat hopes that the “Best Video Game GIF” category will encourage its enormous gamer base to enter their best work into the contest, says Gfycat board director Ernestine Fu. “We’re excited to see what all our creators, especially our gaming creators, come up with.”

“We’re honored so many creators have chosen Gfycat as their preferred platform for creating, discovering, and sharing GIFs. As Gfycat becomes the entertainment destination site for short-form looping content, we’re committed to supporting our creators and users’ interests first and foremost,” said Richard Rabbat, CEO of Gfycat.

Transparent solar panels can replace glass and produce our electricity

I’ve been sharing the above photo from the University of Michigan for over 4 years. 

Dozens have people have said that it’s impossible and tried to explain efficiency. What they don’t know is that solar costs have fallen over 90% in the past decade and are much more efficient. 

And sure enough, the panels are now out commercially, much more efficient that the demos and getting better. 

Interview with Ubiquitous Energy (http://www.ubiquitous.energy/). They have developed the world’s first truly transparent solar technology. ClearView Power transmits visible light and selectively absorbs non-visible light converting it to electricity. It can achieve power conversion efficiencies over 10% while maintaining up to 90% visible transparency. This is solar like you’ve never seen it. Filmed at the http://www.IDTechEx.com USA 2016 event in Santa Clara California.

Do you suffer from the Entrepreneurial Myth?

“The entrepreneur builds an enterprise; the technician builds a job.” – Michael E. Gerber

Do you suffer from the Entrepreneurial Myth?

The Entrepreneurial Myth #1: 

The myth that most people who start small businesses are entrepreneurs.

The Entrepreneurial Myth #2: 

The fatal assumption that an individual who understands the technical side of a business can successfully run a business that does not technically work.

The secret to go ‘Beyond’ The E-Myth is to scale up… that said, what are the best ways to scale your business?

Excerpt from – Beyond The E-Myth – 

This is the simplest book I’ve ever written.

It’s a book written for everyone who has started his own business, or for everyone who hopes to.

It’s a simple book because it starts out with a simple premise. That unless you start your business with the intention of selling it, it will almost always turn out to be a disaster.

So this book is about going to work ON your business (I’m going to call it ‘a company’ from now on) – to design your company, to build your company, to launch your company, and then to grow your company for the extreme purpose of preparing your company for sale.

That means that a company, no matter what it does, and how it does that, is nothing other than a product. A product you’re preparing to sell.

After all is said and done, that’s what an entrepreneur is: an inventor of a grand and growing company — a product — which ultimately will be sold to a buyer who falls madly in love with it.

Every company on the face of the planet is nothing other than a product for sale.

But, the buyer of your company, whomever that may be, doesn’t fall in love with what the company does; he’s much more pragmatic than that. The buyer falls in love with how well your company does it.

And the measure for how well a company does what it does is only two things: First, its success in its ability to attract and keep customers better than any other company; and Second, the return on equity a company produces time after time after time.

In sum, such a company – a company which buyers absolutely love — possesses the uncanny, and seemingly unnatural, ability to scale.