Episode 9: July 21, 2021
A conversation with Fernando Parnes, founder of SuperFans.
A conversation with Fernando Parnes, founder of SuperFans.
- Gregarious Narain (@gregarious)
- Ken Yeung (@thekenyeung)
- Fernando Parnes (@fernandoparnes)
Gregarious Narain 0:45
All right, it's not perfect yet. I need to work on it...
Ken Yeung 0:50
Dude, you should have kept that going I was just jamming out to 80s montage...
Gregarious Narain 0:55
I going to warn you that, you know, people will see you when it fades out when you're dancing behind the scenes. But, welcome to "Stranger Things," Created Economy edition. I'm testing some new videos and animations. That did not work out the way I remember it when I practiced it but...
Ken Yeung 1:12
Wait, how did you practice this?
Gregarious Narain 1:15
I did some dry runs to see what happens when the video ends and all the other stuff but I guess I'm going to need to up my skills here a little bit. But thank you everyone for joining the Created Economy. Welcome back. Oh, I screwed up on my opening script notes as well. But this is our weekly interview series and we will be interviewing voices and players in the creator economy at large to discuss key topics impacting the growth of the creator economy for creators, startups, and everyone in between. We do go live on Wednesdays at 2 pm Pacific time. And you can find out more over a created.show the official show page where all the episodes are listed, etc. We do stream on Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, Clubhouse, Twitter Spaces, all the same time. So feel free, this is an interactive show you have many and multiple opportunities to be involved and to share your voice. You can leave comments if you're watching on video, you can raise your hand or send DMs if you're listening on an audio platform. But please let us know where you are. By the way, speaking of which, if you're watching right now, leave a comment tell us where you're tuning in from. And, you know, if you have any questions today for Fernando, our first guest, we will be doing we will be having him with us very shortly. Let me add, get going now, by the way, in case you don't know, we do have a full official website at CreatedEconomy.com, we have do put long-form content up the show notes, all the transcripts will all be available, they're usually not too long after the episode goes live. So another good way to find out about some of our content that's going on. Now, Ken, there are some interesting changes that have happened in the last hour because you know, that's how we roll. We are a startup. The show is a startup just like every other creator. And so what that means is rapid and constant iteration. And we are going through some changes ourselves.
Ken Yeung 3:11
The first one was kind of really a giveaway with the 80s style with the new intro. I mean, I'm digging that audio track and you know, I might be playing that over and over again in my head.
Gregarious Narain 3:23
That should be my ringtone for when I call you from now on? Oh, of course, that would mean that you would never hear it. Well, I don't remember the last time we actually talked on the phone like, we'll sometimes talk in here for about an hour.
Ken Yeung 3:37
No, actually. Yeah, I think I don't think like it's all text that I mean, this is basically all we do right now. But yeah, I mean, you're right. I mean, we've been, this is episode nine right now. And we've kind of been, you know, evolving the show over the course of you know, the past three-ish months. And I think people have been pretty fond of our format. But I think in terms of us talking about the news, and talking and bringing on guests, it's it feels very rushed in an hour, right? And, you know, we don't want to necessarily deprive people of having two different you know, of not only just having to spend an hour with us hearing about the latest and creator news, but also being able to talk to creators and builders and founders and investors about the creative economy, and then have to join us after dark, although we do enjoy them having them join us on the after-dark show. So we're actually making a programming change starting this week. And so we're going to break it up into two shows. And so Wednesdays will be our standard Created Economy show. And then on Friday mornings at 8 am Pacific, which I believe that's 9 am Mountain Time for you, Greg, is where we're actually going to be creating. We're launching a new show that's dedicated to the news around the creater economy, which is called Created Briefs. And so this will be about a 45 minute or so long show where we're just gonna be recapping what's happening within the week of creator news. And I think this is actually going to be pretty good because we will, we're already finding tons and tons of news that we try and cram into this show previously, but now we have a whole show dedicated to taking our time to analyze and review what it actually means for the industry at large. So I'm looking forward to that as well.
Gregarious Narain 5:37
All right, and just to add a little more color, and by the way, we were listening. So randomly, I did have a call with Arnold, a couple of days ago, or maybe yesterday. And he'd mentioned, he's like, I would love a show if you just had the news. And I said that to Ken, like late last night. And I was like, What do you think, and then we were like, staging it out. And we're like, maybe it'd be good. And then we, of course, we go through all the rationalization to justify all the additional work we're adding to our lives to double up on shows. But I do think, you know, Ken and I like as we collect articles for the show, we often have to cut so much stuff. And by the time we cover it next Wednesday, like you know, maybe half the week has already gone by and you maybe have already seen it. So I really liked the idea of the new show being on Friday now. So that we get the chance to look back on the whole week and sort of seeing all the related pieces. as well. Also, I'm really excited about getting more and more having more surface area to bring more creator voices, more founder voices into the universe, and ultimately to get more conversations going. And I think this also doesn't rob them of the opportunity to tell us more about what they're doing, right, because I feel like we kind of our after dark sessions, if you haven't been to one have actually been great. But they're usually like another hour. And it's another bit of conversation. And most people have been missing out on that. So I think we can get a little bit more into the front-loaded part. So we will see you on Friday at 8 am Pacific time in case you're you're able to tune in for the news, everything will be archived, so you don't have to actually make it in person. But of course, we'd love to have you here in real time as well.
Gregarious Narain 7:07
So let's get into it. This week. This is a you know, an unfortunate circumstance it really right like one of the early stumbling blocks we had, Fernando was the second person I'd scheduled to be on the show. Like literally it was like like the after we had our first person or maybe I sorry, he was our third I got Dimitri for a second. And right after I get the same time I was waiting to talk to Fernando. And then we were out for a week. And then by the time we finally moved it around and shifted around. It took like a whole other like a month and a half to actually get Fernando here. But I am extremely excited to have him here with us today. And so without further ado, let's get the man into the stage. And let's chat. Fernando, how are you doing today? Thank you so much for your patience, obviously. Is that a cello? But thank you so much for being here with us. Thank you for your patience, obviously. You know the first time I saw Super Fans, I was like, Hey, isn't this Zealous?
Ken Yeung 8:11
And we've gotten to the conflict portion of the show.
Gregarious Narain 8:16
And I think it's an important programming note like no, I've told Ken this many times. And I repeated that like I this show is not like about Zealous at all like this show is about the creator economy. To me, we're all working in the same direction to make the world better for creators. And so I want all of our voices to be heard. I want partnerships deals and all kinds of things that happen through the vehicle we can create here. So I have no bias. I will ask questions only maybe because I'm more informed if I work in an area but other than that, like, I'm not going to give anyone a hard time, I want to hear what to do and why they're going to be successful.
Fernando Parnes 8:48
I love that.
Gregarious Narain 8:49
Tell us a little bit about you and and and where you're where you based, by the way, and also like what Super Fans is and then and then let's jump into some questions.
Fernando Parnes 8:57
Absolutely. Yeah, first off, guys, thank you so much for having me here. Ken and Greg, this is really cool. You know, you guys don't have to worry about patience. I've just been looking forward to speaking with you guys. It's such a pleasure to be here. So I really appreciate, I mean a month and a half that's you know, in 2020 post-pandemic. But hey, man, this is. So this is really cool. So thank you so much for having me here. And I am doing fantastic to answer your first question especially now that I am here in front of you guys in front of your awesome audience. A little bit about me, I'm based in LA I was born and raised in Brazil, I'm a permanent resident here in America. Fingers crossed. Hopefully next year, I will be a citizen We'll see. But it's looking good. And I am a complete creator economy and startup, you know fanatic. That's probably a good way to very quickly summarize, summarize it in one sentence, but yeah, that's the basic gist of where, where I'm at, and where I'm from.
Fernando Parnes 10:08
As far as Super.Fans, you know, we're building a platform for creators who want to be able to scale their audience alongside or rather scale their revenue alongside their audience. We think creators are the next wave of truly disruptive businesses, and they have a real tangible capacity to disrupt almost every sector of, you know, industry and business. And we want to give them the tools to be able to do so according to their own vision and under their own brand, as opposed to, to you know, under other platforms and other brands. So we're relatively early we launched in January, we're in private beta rolling out our public beta in the next couple of weeks. And yeah, we're completely creator obsessed and want to change the way creators you know, are able to scale themselves as businesses.
Gregarious Narain 11:03
Until like, what By the way, have you found a good place for pan de quejo In LA?
Fernando Parnes 11:09
Man, okay, so there's a that's a great question. I mean, you clearly know Brazilian culture very deeply based on that question. There's a marketplace right here I am in the valley. Nobody that lives in LA is no judge okay. It is LA get get over it. But there's a Brazilian marketplace right next to me called keto, which I really like and they sell frozen education, which is very good. Oh, the bar is an in-person. Place. Not quite yet. I mean, I'm open to recommendations if anyone hasn't
Gregarious Narain 11:42
No, I used to we used to have an office for a shoot at my last company in Santa Catarina. So I used to go down every year. It was it was awesome. Yeah. And, you know, the flight to 40. But it's like a horrible trip from San Francisco. But, but yeah, we do every morning, that was like our ritual because we would stop and get you to know, maybe it was more than once a day. I'm not gonna pretend
Fernando Parnes 12:10
it gets away from you sometimes.
Gregarious Narain 12:12
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. So my first question, I guess, is really, what brought you to the creator space, where clearly you're a musician, look, you just seeing all your instruments behind you. Like what was sort of like your entree into this universe? And what made you decide, this is the thing I should maybe spend my time on? As they say, the next five to 10 years of your life?
Fernando Parnes 12:37
Absolutely, That's, that's a that's a that's a great question. So the way that I got it, I've always been surrounded by you know, creators and always been surrounded by will, you know, the creator space will say, my grandfather was one of them, you know, original, one of the cofounders of global media in Brazil, one of the big media conglomerates, down there. And my sister is a screenwriter, my, you know, I have a lot of family around that space. So I always kind of grew up around creators and connected with creators. So I, from a very young age, realize that art, you know, art and creativity and our creative content can bring so much value. I mean, it was one of those things that I actually learned English, largely from watching initially from watching "Jurassic Park" with, you know, subtitles VHS that we had,
Gregarious Narain 13:34
You and my son are at equivalent levels.
Fernando Parnes 13:39
It took a while. I mean, my friends will all tell you that I apparently had some accent. I never, you know, I never heard it. So maybe that's why I like I just go with the confidence, you know, no accent. So, yeah, that's, you know, that's always kind of realized that that was a big part of my life. I actually went to school. When I went to college in Rochester, New York, I initially went for the film. So I was, you know, in that creative space again, fell in love with computer science through video game design, and then kind of went through the computer science route, and discovered that apparently, when you combine computer science and creativity, one of the possible results is entrepreneurship. So that was done.
Gregarious Narain 14:25
It was a tool called the Gimp. Isn't the Gimp the name of the Linux Photoshop on a right, they're very ugly? I haven't used that in ages. But well, that's interesting to hear. Ken, did you have any questions for Fernando?
Ken Yeung 14:44
Gregarious Narain 14:44
So by the way, if you're listening, feel free to drop your questions in the comments section or raise your hand or DM us in any way. Well, we will definitely get to your question. Sorry,
Ken Yeung 14:53
Yes, because Clubhouse does have that DM feature or you can slide into our Twitter DMs and let us know what you won't ask.
Ken Yeung 15:01
So Fernando before we kind of get deeper into what you're doing at Super.Fans, I kind of want to better understand your journey, right? It's like you go from being a from graduating college with a computer science degree and you have this creative background. What was it that inspired you to kind of really get into along the lines of what Greg was talking about? Like how did what was the origin story about being involved in creator economy? What kind of made you set your mind on building out a platform with what SuperFans is? Right? I mean, it's like there's a bunch of other things you could have been addressing in the crater economy or just in amongst influencers in general. But what is it about what you're doing is like, major like this is what I want to be doing, this is this is something that needs to be really solved that nobody else is doing and what is your what is that big -- In your mind -- what is that key differentiator?
Fernando Parnes 16:04
That's a great question. You know, the reason why we went into the creator space, is we actually arrived rather organically into space, we had me the team that's currently working on Super with me, we were actually all working on a previous startup called BestBeing, which was in the wellness space, very, very quick aside, I used to weigh almost 500 pounds and lost about half of that weight...
Gregarious Narain 16:32
If you cannot see him right now, you would not believe that, there's no way.
Fernando Parnes 16:37
Thank you, thank you so much. That means a lot but you know, I kind of went into the wellness space because of that journey. And then within the wellness space, we discovered, this kind of potency that creators have to impact people's lives, including in, you know, in wellness, but in reality any other space as well. And we kind of organically shifted and pivoted to the creator space. Actually, once we got once we began experiencing almost as a team collectively, it was one of those serendipitous moments where each of us got connected with a creator and had them impact our lives in some significant way. You know, myself through a creator who does a lot of culinary videos, and then from from from that channel, I got connected with a few other channels and really kind of changed how I lived my life and you know, cooked and kept my kitchen clean and all stuff like that. All of this because of content on YouTube, seeing that I was like, wow, this, this is such an incredibly powerful thing to change people's lives, especially when you develop that relationship with a creator in ways that you would never have imagined when you begin watching a cooking video on YouTube. You know, that kind of realization is what brought us to the creator economy.
Fernando Parnes 17:56
In terms of why we're focusing on what we're focusing on with Super, creator monetization is when we begin realizing that you have creators who are, you know, generating a tremendous amount of traction in terms of audience, but not a tremendous amount of traction in terms of revenue. And because of that they actually go through significant struggles in trying to scale their business, you know, a lot of creative servers serve or suffer from very, very severe burnout. And because today, you kind of have to choose, do I especially at the early stages, right? Do I grow my audience? Or do I grow my revenue, really want to bridge that gap, and we don't think it should be an either-or right it should be I grow my revenue as I grow my audience. That's just not the case today. So as an example, we were we connected with a creator who has, you know, over 200,000 subscribers on YouTube, but more importantly, in our opinion, he gets over one and a half million views every month, you know, 1,000s, if not hundreds of 1,000s of comments every month on his content, a tremendous amount of engagement. I mean, if you ask any startup out there, you know if you could ask a question, and then the next day has on average 10,000 responses to that question and actual honest feedback. How much would you pay for that? Any startup, you know, is gonna tell you at least a few $1,000 for something like that. He gets it for free. And yet he had to sell his car so he could keep making content full time. Right. And well, what is that? That's, that's, to me, that seems completely insane. So that needs to change. And that's, that's why that's why
Gregarious Narain 19:37
it's really interesting. And I guess to Ken's point or honing in a little bit on what Ken was saying, I guess. What a lot of people, there's a lot of entry paths, I guess, into the creator economy, right, because, you know, we have our visualization up from before. There are so many different ways that people could help creators become larger, more sustainable businesses, right? Monetization, obviously, I think is a very compelling path, right? It's something that's obviously easy to understand. But you mentioned sort of two ways to think about it. And I actually have a thread coming out soon about this idea. And I talked about this idea of like, what I call bottoms up creators, which are creators who were starting with a focus on revenue and monetization earlier than previous generations of creators have, right? And so, in your mind, when is the best time for a creator to start monetizing? And don't say like, any time, right, like, I know, you don't? I know that's what you believe. But I guess also like for a creator, maybe who's thinking about SuperFans, like, like, when should they imagine might be the optimal time to be reaching out to you to say, like, Hey, I should be trying this platform out. Because I have these sort of criteria, what would those criteria be?
Fernando Parnes 20:46
That's a great question. So let me answer your first question, first, in terms of when should creator start monetizing. I think that as a creator, you should start monetizing when you have an identifiable base of super fans. I mean, obviously, that's, that's the name of the company, but also the term as used by Pat Flynn, right? So folks who are not only mostly willing to click that button when you ask them to like, so if you go like, hey, please take this action, you have an identifiable base of your audience that's going to go and actually take that action, as well as tell other people about it, right? They're, they're willing to go and say, Hey, this creator is awesome, you should definitely go check out his channel. Definitely subscribe, like the folks that that are your, you know, your actual, like your early evangelists, if you're putting it in startup terms,
Fernando Parnes 21:38
So that's when I think you should start monetizing. Before then you are going to certainly risk alienating your existing audience. And actually, you're going to be taking folks who could potentially become super fans, once they've established that know, like, and trust factor, you're going to be maybe removing them from the equation, right? Because now they're going to be thinking, Hey, this is all about monetization. The second thing is that I do believe creators can test out what revenue, what kinds of content it is that they're going to be putting out, I don't think a creator necessarily needs to know 100%. This is my, you know, this is the content I'm passionate about. This is what I'm going to be putting out for. It's an exploration just like with a business. But you have to be confident that you found the answer to that question like, what is the content that I'm passionate about before you can start monetizing. If you begin monetizing on something you're not passionate about you're going to almost invariably face burnout. And I think that you know, even if you're if you managed to do it early on, it's not gonna be able to scale.
Fernando Parnes 22:42
In terms of Super and when the optimal time would be to reach out to us. You know, we are focused on the middle of the creator economy. Certainly, we definitely want to support creators who are just getting started. However, I do not, I will not claim that our tools are ideal for creators who are just getting started. Right. So in the same way that we recommend you have found that identifiable base of super fans, we do recommend you be at that level, you know, before reaching out to us. And we generally take a look at, you know, we're working with creators once they begin generating a measurable amount of annual revenue based on their content. So anywhere between 15 and 20k, ARR (annual recurring revenue), definitely reach out to us and we can help you take that to the stratosphere.
Gregarious Narain 23:32
That's super good to know, by the way, so I did invite Gary, Gary, how are you doing? On the Clubhouse side? I know you just joined and you're listening to Fernando from SuperFans. But I certainly invite you to if you have any questions and anyone in the audience who might have a question, by all hand, by all means, raise your hand. Joselin, I know you're also over there on Twitter Spaces. And if you have a question, my friend feels free to chime in. If not, Ken and I will keep plying Fernando with questions.
Ken Yeung 24:01
So Fernando, let's talk now what's your path forward in terms of SuperFans? You know you have this philosophy in terms of how you want to reach and help creators. But what is, and you've released a bunch and you've released some tools already. But this is probably just the tip of the iceberg. Right? And in terms of what you got, like what is your grand vision in terms of, you know, as...let's take the show, for example, right, this thing continues to grow. Greg has his media empire with the created economy series of shows, its own network. And we're like, Alright, we need to, we want to, you know, take this up a further up a notch. Like is what is it that you would be able to offer us in the grand scheme of things, right? And for those that are in there that are listening to us on Twitter and on Clubhouse and those that are watching this, across the internet, there are some that are going to be that are obviously way popular than Greg and I. So what would you say to them is like this is where, if you've joined with us, this is where we can take you?
Fernando Parnes 25:22
Absolutely. So, um, I would say first and foremost, using you guys as an example, I think is a good way to go, right?
Gregarious Narain 25:32
The more popular than us is...
Fernando Parnes 25:34
Well. But as Ken said, right, this is the beginning of an empire, every empire has to start somewhere. And I think so. So I'm this is like an investment in a way I'll use. you know, because I'm sure you guys are gonna be giant in the future. So I'm like seeding myself in. Right, right. Real early,
Ken Yeung 25:52
I've already signed up on the waiting list.
Fernando Parnes 25:55
So the first thing that I would say is, is audience ownership, right. So like, we want to make sure that no matter what happens to any other platform out there, that you're going to be able to keep engaging and stay connected with your biggest fans. So that's how we would recommend starting right is actually embedding essentially the ability for fans to create an account directly with you, from wherever it is that that you want to send them. So if it's from a hub that we're creating for you, or if it's from an existing website, hopefully in the future, if it's you know, you have a Zealous app, and you want to embed some of our functionality, wherever that may be. That's kind of our vision, right? We're totally white label. Our idea is to give the infrastructure to the creator as opposed to actually have their fans necessarily come to Super. That's not what we want, we want people to go over to the creator. So for example, using one of our creators, Chef PK, you know, he's with super, he's just gonna be telling his fans, hey, go to ChefPK.com. And that's where their journey as a superfan is gonna start. So direct audience ownership, if anything happens, any other platforms, he has those member lists, he owns the data, he owns their the communication pipeline, that's the first step that I would say
Gregarious Narain 27:14
Just to quickly, um, ask a question, I guess for clarification for people listening. What, what kind of what is, um, have you gotten far enough yet to sort of have any expectation around like conversion rates? Because I know, like, for example, like a Patreon, they say, like, they claim, you know, like a one or 2% sort of conversion to paid, right, of like, say, your total subscriber count, right? By the way, I think that that's probably a crappy number to use, like, I'd probably use something more like, say, average commenters or something like that, like, like, you probably get a much higher signal, if you look at that kind of number. But let's pretend, right, like either way, like, I like what kind of, because I've seen a lot of, like, for example, at Zealous, we do a similar kind of idea. We have the same philosophy, right, like, crazy on your data. But my question is, do you see like, one of the things that creators often I found is, it can be very discouraging, right? Like, you know, you do it, and like only three people sign up or something. Right. Like, is that good or bad? How do you manage expectations around this process as well, I guess, right, because it's so new?
Fernando Parnes 28:16
That's a great question. One of the things that I would say, Greg, is that we're actually finding because we are, you know, we work with creators who, as you said, right, subscriber count is one of those metrics, that can be very, very misleading, in a way. So you mentioned, you know, average monthly commenters, active viewers, that's, that's what we are generally looking at. And I would say that we've found that our creator's conversion rates are actually pretty, you know, pretty crazy, like we've had one of our creators who had a 16% conversion rate to, you know, from click to sale. We and I think a 70% signup rate from, from one of his announcements, so really, really, really crazy. You know, how much creators have that ability to distribute, especially when you're going direct to creator, right. So like, when you're bridging that gap between the fan directly to the Creator, they don't have to go through another platform. They're essentially going to that creator in their mind, they're going to that creator's ecosystem, you tend to see much higher conversion rates. However, how do you manage that expectation is, in my mind, is by really educating the creator on the concept of super fans, right? So like, you might have, you know, a million followers that are casual fans. However, even if you have a million followers, if you have 500 of those followers who are your super fans, and they actually convert, those 500 folks can represent six figures in revenue for you as a creator every year or more, especially because those 500 folks are the folks that are going to bring the next 500 folks. You know, that that network effect of super fans acting as evangelist is extremely powerful. So we really try to essentially have the creator focus on the fact that everyone that you get to sign up as a super fan. Take that extra step where you can maintain that engagement. That's one person who is an extremely, extremely powerful, you know, business generator for you. So every time that you're converting a superfan, you're converting an extremely high-value client, right? And that's, that's how we kind of frame it around our creators they can, everybody that they convert as a superfan is another opportunity to put out more experiences and more products and grow their revenue. So
Ken Yeung 30:42
How would you identify this this super fan, right? I know this is this concept, not not new, it's not something like oh, Fernando coin superfan and therefore it's the name of the company. Right. But you know, this is this has been around for a while. And, you know, I think you to your point, it's like, there's been going around different going, it's been named differently evangelist or, you know, whatever, right. And we kind of know, from a physical standpoint, like in real life example, we kind of know who's been out there championing our brand, our services, our work, right. But in the digital space, it's a little bit less tangible of notice, right, you have to pay attention to people, how do you how do you identify who somebody is that they are probably deemed as as a super fan? I mean, I guess there's no right or wrong answer, right? It's not to say like, Oh, well, I would think Fernando is a super fan, because he kind of engages but I don't necessarily know that if Fernando would actually convert and, you know so that the subscriber and so on and so forth. How would creators understand that.,
Fernando Parnes 31:54
I would describe what you just described as an active fan, right? So that the person who's making a person who's making a decision on a bit on a case by case basis, they are likely to engage, they already know your brand, but they're going to be saying, hey, every time they see something of yours, they're asking that question, am I going to click right? Am I going to take action? The superfan is actually the fan who that equates that level from has been removed from the equation. So they will click no matter what once they see you put something out, they are going to click on that, right. If they if you say Hey guys, I'm dropping merch, you know, you're a super fan will go and check out that store. Most likely, I would say a very, very, very high chance. They're the first they're also the first folks that are going to convert and actually purchase something from you. If you say I'm doing a pay-per-view, your super fan is going to be the first person who is going to click on that link and actually want to participate in that pay-per-view, right, and so on and so forth. I mean, the superfan is the is the fan who is no longer making a decision every time they see your content. They are they have already made the decision that they will engage. At that point they're a super fan.
Gregarious Narain 33:07
What I know, and this is hard, and I know there's not a good answer here. But I guess just for discussion, relatively speaking. And like, for example, I know we're both like probably trying to raise money at some point, right, like for investors. And a question investors are always gonna ask me super fans are there like, is that sustainable? Is that audience growing? Right? Is it reliable, right, like so like hearing you characterize it, which I agree with, by the way, like, I believe there are certainly a cohort of people who behave this way. Is that big enough? Right, like, and I guess, like, you notice, there's always kind of this inflection point of like, when the super fans are enough for survival, or even like sustainability and growth? You know, but obviously, you're still gonna have like, a fairly diverse revenue stream, where you're pulling revenue from, I mean, creating generating revenue from a lot of different places? When you talk to creators today? Are you encouraging them? Like, are there some people who are like this could replace all your revenue, versus some people who are like, this is a great revenue an addition to your revenue stream, like augmenting? Or is it just the stories still, mostly, like everyone, we're just augmenting your revenue? Or is it post-revenue?
Fernando Parnes 34:19
Right now. I mean, our vision, Greg is for sure to eventually be able to support a creator's entire revenue pipeline, you know, especially at scale. But at this point, and I think this is actually true, and in terms of how I would tell creators if there are viable alternative revenue streams, I think that's the beauty of being a creator, right, is that you can actually leverage those so so so I will say that I'll always be happy in the category of revenue support. You know, I think that a creator can creator being able to add additional lines of revenue is what allows a creator to really scale more creatively with their content. So I think that, you know, I'm always supportive of that. And then very briefly whether there are enough super fans, my answer is a staunch Yes, I think there are, whatever the global population is, nowadays, we'll say 7 billion. That's how many superfans there are or there will be. As more people get access to, you know, digital, get more digital access, everybody in the world has the capacity to be a superfan. And in my opinion, anyone who has access to a creator is most likely a super fan of someone. And that's where I think the truth I mean, you know, I actually put a tweet out the other day about how to me, it doesn't make sense to like, close the door on competitors or anything and not help people in this space. Because my god, there's just so much space that, you know...
Gregarious Narain 35:19
Well, you know, and the reason I bring it up is honestly, I, because I do believe in being realistic, right. And so it's not to be cynical about the space because obviously, we're both believers, we're, we've committed our lives to sort of building and supporting in this area. But I do think it's a point to be realistic about the timelines at which you can achieve these sort of ends, right. And so I do feel like sometimes it's almost a little bit of blind faith, that this is where we are. And I'm like, yeah, we're here in three to five years. Right? Like, oh, yeah, we're not here right now. Right. And, and, and it's about not over-promising. And you know, as I found, like, in doing sales for years and years in my life, managing expectations is like one of the most important skills you learn as a leader, as a manager, as a parent, or Hey, and certainly like in the salesroom. And it's important for us to be honest, not not like a handicap like the opportunity, but more to just be honest with people because I think you get a lot further right? In that when we do that. By the way, I missed Matt's comment, but it did involve talking about punching Ken,
Ken Yeung 36:57
now will you stop with that? Like we got to bring it up every week?
Gregarious Narain 37:01
Ken's gonna get into boxing we decided also because boxing is the new creator sport, apparently.
Fernando Parnes 37:06
I mean, apparently, I've actually been hearing that a couple of the companies I'm speaking with down in Brazil actually are like heading up.
Gregarious Narain 37:15
I'm gonna do the content. Ken's gonna do the boxing.
Fernando Parnes 37:20
Hey, man, see, that's I becoming a super fan. I'll pay to see that.
Ken Yeung 37:26
So I'm converting people, one guest, at a time, right. And, you know, I think this is... really, Greg... I was gonna do that
Fernando Parnes 37:37
There you go.
Gregarious Narain 37:38
No, we were both fighting to put Matt's comment on.
Ken Yeung 37:44
No, but I think it'll be very much similar to like how things go in the world of creators, it's all going to be like, short viral ephemeral, right? So my boxing career will be very short, very brief. The fights will last probably like 15 seconds. And then it'll be a
Gregarious Narain 38:00
Just do that thing where you just lay down on the ground and pretend you're punching.
Fernando Parnes 38:03
That's great, man. But I'll tell you this 15 minutes of fame in the digital age can last you forever. Right? That's, that's a big part of it hands-on?
Ken Yeung 38:12
Depends on how you define fame, right? I mean, it's like, it depends on what the action is right?
Gregarious Narain 38:22
By the way, let me do provide an opportunity, just in case if you are in Clubhouse or on Twitter spaces, and you have a question for Fernando. Are you the CEO? The cofounder?
Fernando Parnes 38:31
Co-founder and CEO
Gregarious Narain 38:33
...co-founder and CEO of superfans a new platform that is helping creators monetize by offering quickly Can you summarize, like, what kind of capabilities we're giving to?
Fernando Parnes 38:42
Yeah, absolutely. So we give creators the ability to stand up, like launch, model, deploy and launch to their fans any kind of digital product or experience that they can envision. They can build that directly on our platform and launch it, launch it to their fans in minutes. You know you mentioned, Greg, you know, we're we have a couple of major updates coming out but happy to show a quick example of what that looks like.
Gregarious Narain 39:07
Go ahead, if you're happy to share, we're happy to show
Fernando Parnes 39:10
Always happy to share. Let me do...
Gregarious Narain 39:14
Alright folks, don't say you didn't see it here first.
Fernando Parnes 39:18
Literally the first place anyone is seeing this.
Gregarious Narain 39:21
Oh, look at this
Fernando Parnes 39:23
At all. I guess this is
Gregarious Narain 39:24
I don't know what it is but I want it.
Fernando Parnes 39:24
...the first public the first public demonstration. So very briefly, we give the creator creators you know, if they have any kind of vision of how they want to monetize their audience at the moment that they're ready, they can do that very easily using our platform that includes releasing completely white label and customized communities. If Colin and Samir are watching this, this is just an example logo. Sorry, guys. My file but you know, you can launch white label communities that have full analytics full control as the creator and once you have those, you can also launch completely bespoke customized experiences for your fans. Experiences are a combination of interactions and digital products, if you want to launch merch, if you want to do pay per views, if you want to do behind the scenes, live drops, whatever it is, you can use our platform to build that. I'll just give a quick example. So for example, this is an example of a merch drop template. This as you build this visually, as a creator, and automate it, this all gets built in the back end. So as soon as you you're happy with the model, you can actually release it to your fans.
Fernando Parnes 39:57
And in case folks are listening, there's sort of like a customer journey mapper kind of workflow diagram here, which is like actually writing code for you, which is awesome.
Fernando Parnes 40:45
Exactly, exactly correct. And, you know, for example, this is one where a creator of ours and we actually templated this afterward, but he wants to do a regular limited release of merge that is attached to an event that's only available to the folks who actually purchased the verb. So this is what you're seeing here, where you get the event, you get an intro, and then post the event you automatically are you're automatically given that piece of merch if it's digital, or we ask for your shipping address.
Gregarious Narain 41:11
So Fernando, can you show an example of how someone deploys SuperFans? Like, so like, yeah, you're this thing. But like, what do I do with this thing now like that I have?
Fernando Parnes 41:21
Absolutely. So I'll quickly give an example, I have something that before the show, you know, I had an empty, you know, it's completely empty. But I'll go on a template here and do a video series template, you know, it gets populated, I can now go and upload all the content that I want to include in this experience, I can modify this in any way that I want. So if I want to add content, I can if I want to add interactions, like live streams, chats, whatever I can, Once I'm happy with this, this is all you know, saved at this time, I can just hit my Save changes button. So at this point, this is all saved. And if I want to deploy it, there are two ways you can do it. Either you can embed it on your own website, we do the only thing that we require is that a creator embeds a signup and login flow before they embed any other experiences. But you can actually embed, you know, you can embed that directly in your website, you get a little snippet of code, and you can do that if you don't have a website or you want to create one directly with us, I'm just gonna have to refresh my page here for a second, you can actually do that using our builder. So as you can see here, I can just now go and hit my video series. There it is, if I want to go and change this information, obviously I can very easily
Gregarious Narain 42:32
This is like a landing page builder, almost, kind of.
Fernando Parnes 42:34
Yeah, just a quick landing page builder, it's all you can start from scratch, if you want, we do offer a lot of templates and recommend that you start with a template, you know, to make things a little bit easier, but if I want to modify this at all, right, if I have multiple experiences, I can just you know, add them here. And have them show up immediately, you know embedded and then I can just share out this link with my friends.
Ken Yeung 42:58
So, Fernando, this is based on what you just showed us in this demo, this is built for the average person like the average creator, right? This is not going to require some knowledge of like HTML, CSS or, or doing even like, even the mapping of what you showed us at the beginning. Right, that is for a complete, complete noob like me,
Fernando Parnes 43:29
Ken Yeung 43:30
Someone that's like may, tangentially like, Oh, I know enough. I know how to read a shimelle. But for me to sit down is like No, that's not what
Gregarious Narain 43:39
You don't read HTML.
Ken Yeung 43:39
Well. I can read I just can't write it. Okay, there's a difference. Okay, I can, I can see what they what it means, I can decipher it. All right.
Gregarious Narain 43:51
We have a beta tester for you, right here.
Ken Yeung 43:55
No, that's legitimately true, because my next point is like, how can it seems like what your what superfans are doing is, I mean, in addition to allowing you to monetize your audience is to streamline the workflow, right?
Fernando Parnes 44:10
100%. 100%. Ken Yeah, that's correct. And I think that, you know, you're asked whether you would need any kind of knowledge of, you know, HTML, code and that kind of stuff. Absolutely not. I mean, that's, that's the entire point is that you'd be able, you are able to, you know, build really, really complex and, and dynamic experiences with near zero, you know, needing zero code, all you need is the creativity, right? So you can just, you can create something from scratch. Obviously, if you create an experience from complete scratch, add all the content yourself, all the automation, and that kind of stuff. It is all drag and drop, it's gonna take a little longer than if you use a pre-built template, but absolutely, no technical knowledge is needed at all.
Gregarious Narain 44:56
You are designing it clearly. I think it'd be a self-service kind of tool. But, uh, you know, certainly now but I guess just imagining how you envision sort of this growing and scaling. Do you believe that you will offer services as well to help people do the setup and manage this for them? Or, you know, I'm just curious, like, how are you thinking about those parts as well?
Fernando Parnes 45:14
Absolutely. So definitely, we actually speaking with a few of our, with our investors, this is most likely going to come sooner rather than later, but we will be offering some concierge services for creators, especially as they scale right? I mean, I think as a creator scales, it becomes crucial that they have, they kind of take on that role of CEO, right, where they need to be able to delegate things and those things need to run and happen smoothly. So certainly, that part of that is going to be through a concierge service. The other part of that, yeah, I'm, I'm already revealing everything, you know, to you guys, first, I might as well do that too. We're building a superhuman-like, service, if you know, superhuman, the email server where you can, you can have, you know, a little basically a terminal that comes up using natural language, you can just type like, I want this to happen. And based on that natural language, we're actually going to be able to set up most of the infrastructure on the back end. And then if people are needed to, you know, fill in the details will be we'll supply that, but that's definitely in our roadmap, you know, move moving forward, because our expectation is that using super our creators who today maybe have 200, 300, 500,000, you know, subscribers and followers in the future, we certainly expect that they will have millions and millions as the creater economy grows. And once that happens, you know, they are going to need more bespoke services to facilitate that growth.
Gregarious Narain 46:39
So super cool. Well, here's what I propose, Ken, is one last call for questions. And then I think what we could do is try to shift over to the After Dark. So if you don't want to ask your question where you'd like to get on face to face and actually join us in the group chat, we're happy to chat. Oh, whoa, Selena had a quick question on what were the MRR numbers that you mentioned. Like where you thought was like, sort of an optimal fit now?
Fernando Parnes 47:05
Yeah. MRR, I had mentioned, you know, about 20k or so annual recurring revenue, which amounts to about you know, 1,500 ish, a little bit less than that monthly recurring revenue. And the reason why, if anyone is curious, the reason why that's the number is that, based on our research at that stage, you have a base of super fans, for sure. So that's and so that really is the metric that we're looking at
Gregarious Narain 47:33
I have one last quick question related, are super fans like a horizontal phenomena or like, do they index differently, like in different verticals? Like, you know, like you do somehow like fashion and beauty people get more super fans than, you know, like, you know, tech reviewers or something?
Fernando Parnes 47:49
Yes. And, and if any super fans are out there, I mean, this literally like in the nicest way possible, depending on the vertical, the value of a super fan is, is higher, but that's literally just in financial sense. Not in a culture or exactly right. So like, if I'm a finance and I mean, I think this is clear if you even look at how YouTube pays out their creators, right? Like, if I'm a finance creator, you know, if I'm a finance creator, most likely my fans are going to have a high ticket price across, higher ticket price across the range for anything that they're purchasing, right. from, from me, my super fans, especially so like, you know, we've seen a few creators that we're talking to who have that kind of base, their their primary base of fans is like investment bankers. And the average ticket price for a product of theirs is, you know, $1,200, $1,500, extremely, extremely high. Whereas if you're looking at a cooking show, those folks are going to aggregate superfans most likely much more rapidly. However, the average ticket price for a superfan at that, you know, in that vertical is going to be somewhere between $50 and $100, which is still much higher than we anticipated when we initially started doing this. But yeah, much different than $1,200.
Gregarious Narain 49:08
Well, we are moving towards this idea of, you know, sort of the 100 true fans and smaller numbers. So I certainly believe in the power of that. Well, Fernando, thank you so much for being with us. In case you haven't had a chance to check out the technology. It's over at Super.Fans
Fernando Parnes 49:24
And reach out to me if you guys want if anyone wants to private test as anyone that's listening to this now you guys have full access. And I'll just you know, I'll give you guys two months, you know, two months, no transaction fees.
Gregarious Narain 49:35
Oh, you see what you get for tuning into the Created Economy?
Fernando Parnes 49:39
Gregarious Narain 49:40
But we are I hope you have a few minutes to check to hang out with us a little bit for the after show. But
Fernando Parnes 49:45
I cleared my schedule. I'm all yours.
Gregarious Narain 49:48
Yeah, well also you get a chance to see Zealous now, so this will be interesting.
Fernando Parnes 49:53
Man. I'm one of your first users. What are you talking about?
Gregarious Narain 49:56
Yet, you'll see the new part...
Ken Yeung 49:58
Greg clearly doesn't know who his super fans are.,
Gregarious Narain 50:06
Absolutely. But just in case, some little bookkeeping, thank you all for being here. We are going to head over to our after show at created.show/live if you want to check that out. But up next week we've got our friends from the Black creator crew. It's Antonio. Wait, you know what. That's right. Yes, Antonio and Steven are gonna be with us next week for the Created Economy. So we'll have a deep dive into what they're doing and what they're building over at the Block creator crew.
Gregarious Narain 50:44
We do have on Friday, just in case you missed the earlier part of the show, we do have our news show, which will be we have like, like, I don't know, like 30 articles to go through Friday morning at 8 am Pacific time. Also, don't forget Jim Louderback. You know, the chairman of VidCon will be here on August 11 for the creative economy. We've got our friend James Hicks on the 18th. And then Rony Rom from CommunyCo. on August 25. We actually have we are booked through September, currently. But if you want to be a guest, we would love to have you head over to CreatedEconomy.com to find out how to be a guest, we'll give you a chance to do so as well. In case you don't follow us already, by the way, one quick mention we are on Twitter, Flipboard, Twitch and YouTube. We're "created economy" everywhere. So just take a look. And we hope you'll find us and give us a follow.
Gregarious Narain 51:34
And we are now heading over. So if you are listening, feel free to head over to created.show/live is where the after show will be this will be actually an opportunity for you to get on stage with us and join us in in the production, ask questions, and interact. So head on over there now. It's your chance to have a little bit of an off-the-record conversation with us. And so we welcome and hope to see you over there very soon. And just because I don't have the music standalone, Ken, I will play this for you on the way out. So we'll see you all on Friday or next week. Bye, everybody.