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October 21, 2020

Launching your first paid group

Launching your first paid group

So, you've decided to start a Quorum group. You've decided to leverage the specific knowledge you've built up over the years to create a rich stream of income. Or maybe you already have a business and think Quorum would be a great new channel for delivering value to your customers. Whatever your unique circumstance, this guide will help you to break the daunting challenge ahead into smaller, more actionable steps.

1. Create A Planning Document

"everyone has a plan" says Mike Tyson, "until they get punched in the face".

While it's true that the future never happens as we expect, creating a plan is still valuable. You will get punched in the face and be forced to change course many times, but it's better to start with a definite plan of action rather than wandering aimlessly. This way, you'll know if you're actually making progress or not. In the words of Peter Thiel:

"A bad plan is better than no plan"

To that end, here are a few things to include in your initial planning document:

1. Define Winning

Set clear, measurable goals. This doesn't need to be a heartfelt essay, just a few short sentences against which you can measure your progress.

That means including a timeframe and an objective.

"I want to create an additional source of income", for instance, is a bad goal as it's nebulous and not easily measurable. "I want to make €1k per month through Quorum by the end of 2020" is a better one.

One last caveat: the conservative among you will probably set goals that are too modest. The ambitious, goals that are too big. What's better is to set goals at either end of this spectrum.

2. Set Anti-Goals

Everything in life has a price. You could conceivably achieve any goal you set for yourself, provided you make the sufficient sacrifices to attain it. That's why, in the words of Sidney Howard, "One-half of knowing what you want is knowing what you must give up before you get it."

You could be making €5k a month on Quorum, but if you have to spend every waking hour replying to messages on your laptop, is it worth the price? It may well be, but you need to decide for yourself what you are and, more importantly, aren't willing to do to achieve your goal.

Define the things that you won't do, and build these constraints into your plan. For example, here are the constraints Shaan set before launching his rolling fund .

Project Constraints

3. List The Action Steps

List the steps you'll need to take to achieve your desired outcome.

This doesn't need to be a work of art, just a rough sketch of the steps you think are necessary. Ask yourself:

  • What steps could I take in the next hour to generate momentum or test my idea?
  • What could I achieve today?
  • This week?
  • This month?

As Mike Tyson reminded us, the world is unpredictable- you will be met with unexpected jabs in the face. So focus on what you can do today, on what you can control, and don't obsess over the long term vision. Make progress each day and, in the words of three time Super Bowl winner Bill Walsh, "the score will take care of itself."

2. Get Clear on Your Value Proposition

As we've covered in previous posts, you need to be as specific as possible about the value proposition of your group. Take some time to brainstorm the things that you're uniquely good at, that you enjoy doing and that would provide tangible value to a sufficiently niche group of people. These posts will help:

How To Find Your First 100 Customers

3. Establish Who Your Group Members Will Be

If you already have a list of people you've worked with in the past, great! Add them to a spreadsheet and reach out to them to tell them about your new service.

If not, you'll need to choose your target market and use whatever data you can gather on them to create an ideal customer persona. More on that here.

4. Create a Content Plan

Once you have some commitments from customers, start creating a plan for the first month of content you'll provide for them. Here's a sample plan to help.

Conclusion

Starting any project is daunting. Nobody seems to care about what you're building, not even your family and friends. 'How the hell', you ask, 'is this little thing going to grow into something meaningful?'

But everything that's now big and impressive started small. Everyone you admire began life as a ball of flesh. Every significant company, literary work and musical composition started out as a few insignificant scribbles on a piece of paper. Before SpaceX, came 'The Mars Oasis Project'. Before Luke Skywalker, came Luke Starkiller. But incremental gains compound, and what was once an acorn becomes an oak tree.

The key is to break the ominous path ahead into small, achievable steps. Could you take one step forward today? Just one. Do that everyday and you're well on your way to creating your desired outcome- step by incremental step forward.

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