Ep. #1108 - Sports Innovation and Technology
In today’s Startup Hustle episode, get to know more about what’s happening in the world of sports innovation and technology. Join Matt DeCoursey and Josh Carney, CEO and Founder of Stunt™, as they talk about innovating sports consumption through technology. Hear them discuss how Stunt™ is creating a social media platform for sports fans, how to compete with industry giants, and more.
Covered In This Episode
Wouldn’t it be nice to have an online space for sports fans? A platform where they can create content, share their takes and commentaries, and at the same time monetize their following. That’s where Stunt™ comes in. It is the first-ever sports social media and content platform created for sports fans. It is a combination of sports innovation and technology.
In this conversation, Matt talks with Josh about how Stunt™ is different from other social media platforms. They also discuss the importance of the monetization system. Aside from these, the two also share the dangers of competing against giants in the industry. Lastly, Josh highlights how Stunt™ helps creators with their discoverability.
Learn more about sports innovation and technology and Stunt™ in this Startup Hustle episode.
- Josh’s journey (3:02)
- Community building to drive awareness (8:33)
- The creator battle on social media (16:41)
- What makes Stunt different from other social media platforms? (20:39)
- Why OnlyFans monetization the best for creators? (23:20)
- Creating premium content for sports fans (25:19)
- Competing against the giants of social media platforms (29:28)
- Discoverability of creators in Stunt (36:23)
- Founder’s Freestyle (42:16)
We understand we need to build the, I always say it’s a fine line between new features and familiarity. And that’s really what we’re trying to do right now give them the familiar, like use case experience that they would have utilized a large social network, but do it with kind of new features, specifically custom-built for sports.Josh Carney
One of the biggest expenses for any new venture, like an app or a platform or anything, is the initial costs for the hype you have to generate and create just to get it moving.Matt DeCoursey
The cowardly approach to entrepreneurship is quite wise. Now, what does that mean? First off, you’re brave if you’re an entrepreneur in general, but the cowardly approach is that, hey, I’m not going to go battle giants, I’m instead going to go do something that no one else is doing. And I’ll do it somewhere where everyone will leave me alone to get real good at it. And there are there is a lot of validity to that approach, like the true riches in the niches.Matt DeCoursey
One thing that you have to remember is if you create a brand, your best bet is to try to be an ally to everyone and a competitor to no one because then it opens up the door.Josh Carney
Step ahead of your competitors by getting world-class and experienced software developers. Through Full Scale, acquiring highly vetted and tested developers, testers, and other specialists is quick and affordable. Simply tell us your project requirements, and let’s form your dream team. Contact us today!
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Following is an auto-generated text transcript of this episode. Apologies for any errors!
Matt DeCoursey 0:00
And we’re back. Back for another episode of Startup Hustle. Matt DeCoursey, here to have another conversation. I’m hoping helps your business grow. So you’re sitting there and you’re messing around with Facebook and Insta and Tik Tok, and you saw what I was eating for dinner last night you saw what my kids were playing with. You saw pictures of my kids, you saw the concert that I went to, and you’re like, Man, I just want more sports give me this or it’s where are the people that want to talk about ball. That’s what we’re gonna get into today when we talk about sports innovation and technology. Before I introduce today’s guests, today’s episode Startup Hustle is powered by full scale.io Hiring software developers is difficult and Full Scale can help you build a platform build a software team quickly and affordably and has the platform to help you manage that team visit full scale.io to learn more and you can tell those are live ad reads when I mess them up. So with me today, I’ve got Josh Carney, and Josh is the CEO and founder of Stunt. You can go to the stunt.com there is a link in the show notes for that. This is a social media app that filters out everything but the sports so you know Josh I normally say Welcome to Startup Hustle, but let’s say play ball Welcome to the show.
Josh Carney 1:12
We’d like to say let’s talk sports.
Matt DeCoursey 1:15
Yeah, there you go. Yeah, well I’m in Kansas City so there’s been a lot of there’s a lot of sports talk around here lately obviously have the the Chiefs doing their thing and you know, the not too far out from from the Royals having won and then in some World Series and the Kansas Jayhawks won the national won the NCAA last year. So here we are. Live in the dream
Josh Carney 1:43
so tough being you I’m I’m out here and right outside of Duval County, Jacksonville, Florida. Born and raised in Jacksonville and spent a lot of time in Cali but you know, my heart has always been here. So you know, getting to be a Jaguars fan my whole life. You know, you while you’re out there enjoying the spoils. I’m just now getting a taste of maybe what our future holds with Trevor. And you know, maybe we’ll be on top of the AFC next year, we’ll see. But, you know, I have no pity for you, man. I’m sorry. You’re living the dream over there? Well, I’m over here just scrounging for just a single when I’m
Matt DeCoursey 2:25
string that together, because between the Royals, 2414 and 2015. And then we got Pat mahomes A couple years later. And
Josh Carney 2:32
so we read and you know, just really difficult. Yeah,
Matt DeCoursey 2:36
yeah. Well, I mean, it was difficult, because prior to that there, I mean, there was, I mean, it’s pretty long drought. For sure. Alright. So when we talk about the stunt, and once again, there’s a link for that in the show notes. I was checking it out before the show. I mean, essentially the way that if we’re, you know, let’s actually just start with a little bit about your backstory. I mean, what brought you up all of this, and you know, then we’ll let our cover we’ll just start our conversation there.
Josh Carney 3:02
Sure. So, you know, my background is predominantly as a marketing agency owner, I started my marketing career forever ago at a tiny little company called website pros. And I spent almost nine years there, and I was our corporate director of marketing. What was funny is when I started there, we had about 200 people. By the time I left, we were at about 2500. And it was a little, the name had changed to a small company, you might have heard of called web.com, which, at the time, was the premier sponsor of the PGA Tour. And we did. You know, basically, we kind of set the standard for what an online agency would be for small to medium sized businesses. And so, you know, kind of grew my career there and got called out to California to work on several different startups and one specifically in the financial education space, which kind of launched my whole career after that. I had launched an agency out there kind of consulting tech startups for VC firms. I was doing that in the Bay Area for a while. And then I realized that my real talent was in this whole financial education marketing sector, because I built one of the biggest brands on Earth, we launched a secondary agency specific for that and grew it to be one of the largest in the country, launched a consulting firm had multiple different seven figure clients and seven figure, you know, contracts that I had to there. And so I realized, you know, I kind of know what I’m doing on this marketing side. And so that had pretty much dominated my whole career. Oh, it was funny, as while I was building that. I also happened to be a fantasy football analyst. So I was super nerdy, love fantasy football, I loved analytics. There was that guy who was fortunate enough to have an office so I would close the office door, and you know, call into the local sports station. He was doing that every day. And I kind of started developing this, you know, kind of character on the radio here in Jacksonville where every show knew me and I was calling in dropping hot takes day in and day out. We ended up happening is I started going to some events Station. And one of the guys that worked at the station is a guy named Mike Dempsey and anybody who plays fantasy football and follows fantasy analysts knows Mike. He’s one of the best in the country. Host of football diehards, drivetime radio on Sirius XM. Mike had a show in Jacksonville. And he told me it was like, Man, you really know your stuff, like you really no fan and I was like, yeah, he’s like, we should do a show together. And that was kind of my breaking. And so I started, you know, outside of my marketing career, I was shooting over to the radio twice a week. Started on radio here in Jacksonville doing a fantasy football show. Within a year we were the official show of the Jags. I’m doing a television show from the stadium of the York Tennessee football show that lasted several years until then I started getting called on Sirius XM, then I was like Josh from Jax and I was on with Kay Adams and Lisa and and the producers over there were booked me on every show, then I started going to football diehards all the time, and I became the permanent villain co host for football diehard. So that was for two years. And so I really was exposed to the broadcaster analyst side of sports, especially on the fantasy side. And, you know, fortunately for me, my career had taken off to the point where I had to leave it because there’s a lot more money and only marketing agencies and fantasy sports, believe it or not, and went out. And I started on this consulting on this project about two years ago, in the financial space. And it was they were creating basically like Tiktok for finance. And I went down these deep rabbit holes of learning about content creators, how they’re monetizing their content, why they post content, I did deep analysis case studies on things like Twitch and mixer and only fans and all these different models. And through all of that research, while I was consulting this brand, I thought to myself, it doesn’t make any sense that we’ve never built a place like this for sports. It makes no sense whatsoever. So I, you know, I think about this for almost a year and a half. And I’ve worked with a guy named Steve Mandel, who’s actually a co founder of this company himself, and he’s a high powered sports agent, I go in and consult on a lot of his his projects and athletes projects. And he goes, You know, that’s a great idea, you know, we should do this, we should do this, we should build the social platform for sports. And I started thinking back when I was getting started, like what would have made it easy for me. So I spent about two weeks in this office, Matt, and I just gameplan exactly what the app would look like. And then the infrastructure and the business plan and the dev schedule, and I did all the stuff, I put it together. And I happened to know working on another project with a guy named Arnaud canal. And Arnaud canal is the ex senior lead engineer at Google, he was solely responsible for building YouTube TV. He is the creator and, and the head developer for that project. He also sat in on Dropbox and development of Dropbox is both a company called hand glide, which builds apps for some of the largest tech startups in the world. And obviously, he’s like the man, right? This guy is just the one of the best developers in the world. So I gave him this whole project. I just handed it to him. And I said, What do you think about this? Is this something viable? Is this something that, you know, could get catch legs, and Arnold came back and said, I’m willing to drop everything to do this. He’s like, this could be, you know, one of those game changing world changing applications long term, I really, truly believe that. And I built them before,
Matt DeCoursey 8:33
when you get the passion piece, though, because people are like, you know, when you talk about building audiences, or building crowds, or building any of that, and you know, and being someone who as a content creator, so I sell boring shit, man, like entrepreneurship and startups and like, there’s definitely like your niche down. And a lot of people they’re like, Well, you’re not in the insurance business. I’m like, not so much. It’s like, it’s several notches down with that. But one thing I did, so I used to be a ticket broker. And I definitely learned about the value of of things that people are passionate about, you know, you talk about this, this embarrassment of riches that we have as sports fans in Kansas City right now. But that didn’t stop me from dropping huge money on another AFC Championship game, you know, because it’s a passion thing. And like So building that community. Now part of the challenge, though, with building community as getting the first people in at all, and like, I’ve learned that it’s the same thing with the marketplace. And and by the way, let’s give a shout out to our friends at Urban necessities because we’re talking about marketplaces. And Josh is rockin the UN. If you’re not familiar with urban necessities, big sneaker resale outlet out of Las Vegas, and now and the Emirates, they just opened up their location, but they’ve been a Full Scale client for six years now, and that you talk about that that’s a marketplace as well. So whether you have a buyer and a seller or a commenter and they And another comment or get so nice populating these rooms in these things is a challenge. Now once you start getting people in there, you can keep them in there for they can get real sticky, because the whole idea of community building is that the people in the community will end up finding more value amongst each other than they will with, you know, like, so you can Yeah, and you know, Seth Godin wrote a book about this, apparently, we’re not supposed to say tribes anymore, like, because people would talk about tribe building. That’s not That’s not, that’s not as that’s it’s culturally insensitive, because we are not from tribes, so communities or whatever you wanna call it, Seth Godin had a book called Tribes? I don’t know, I doubt he’s gonna rename it. But, but yeah, you talk about that. And they actually compared like, they talked about, they use the Grateful Dead, which was interesting, because last night, I actually went to see Bob, we’re here in Kansas City. Yeah. And during the place of sold out, sold out, and you know, and he was just playing Grateful Dead songs. But it was the people that were there were many cases there to see each other, as much so like that, that that that community, yeah, yeah, communal nature of the people that are talking to each other. So I want to own this website, while I still actually own the domain. But I ended up shutting it down, because it wasn’t doing anything with the website that it had had a message board on it. When I turned that off, I got like, 50 emails in like, the next couple days, they’re like, please turn and actually turn that community back on and just left it on, I was like, Fine, I’ll do whatever you want with it. And they’re still they were still in there talking about it, you know, all these years later, because they found that value in each other. And it was for a small batch of people. So what did you do? Or what are you doing to drive to create awareness? Or get people in there and get that conversation starter?
Josh Carney 11:49
Yeah, it’s funny, you know, we have, you know, for a very long time, obviously, I’ve owned a successful consulting firm, and I’ve went in and consulted on so many tech startup projects, and I’ve talked to so many CEOs, and I’m not gonna lie that the hardest thing to do is to like, listen to my own advice that I would give another CEO now that was mine, because you think, Well, I can do this better,
Matt DeCoursey 12:11
right? You’re doing it for yourself or with your own money as a different thing. For sure.
Josh Carney 12:16
It’s funny too, because you think, Well, I have the experience, I can handle doing X, Y and Z knew I would tell another CEO, that’s this is not the smart path right? Now you need to consolidate and do this. And for me, I’m like, Oh, well, I already know. So I’ve been really good. Actually, that’s been one of the most beneficial things for me is following the advice that I would give give another CEO. And the truth is, is that right now, while we’re trying to build, you know, kind of this community of users, to be honest with you, what we did is, and this is what’s crazy, we started building this thing six months ago, we launched it literally four weeks ago, tomorrow. The goal was this to prove validity. And to prove that people actually wanted a place where they could just talk about sports, and build community. We didn’t know a lot of things going in, we didn’t know if eight, this was something people really, really wanted. Right? We thought they did, because we wanted it. But we needed to see Do people really want this? Secondly, we needed to see, will they police their own content? Or will they just talk about sports in this environment. And just so you know, what we did is we took the the most use features that we felt that sports content creators and general fans use. So we built a live streaming capability, live audio room capability, short form, video capability, and a thread based capability similar to Reddit and Twitter kind of combined, right? And so we built those in because we said this is how sports fans talk about sports. These are Creators talk about sports, we launched it. And just, I mean, just a tiny, teeny bit of marketing, just to get basically some beta testers on boarded. We went out and you know, we partner with some pretty big names that brought on board as our Board of advisor members, guys like Michael Irvin, Mike silver, Trey Wingo, Mark schlereth, a lot of these guys are all on our board of advisor groups, because they were also ones that were like, We want a sports only social platform. And when we talked to them about this, they were like, We want to be involved. So they’re all equity holders and board of advisor members. And when you know, when we asked them, you know, hey, do you want to talk about this at the Super Bowl? Because we’re launching this week, they’re like, yeah, so they talked about it a little bit. We immediately on boarded within days, about 1000 users. And we had a 28% daily active user rate, which is unheard of on a brand new app that sits six pages back through your app scrolling, and we started watching them posting content. We were like, Okay, let’s see how much non sports related content do we get? And four weeks of being live? We’ve had one post that wasn’t fortunately. And we were like, Okay, so the validity is there. So when you talk about how do we get people on here talking about sports, the honest truth is, we just give them the platform and the features, which is why right now there’s a Post a dumping a bunch of money into marketing and trying to onboard a million users and do all this, we know that the business is sound, we know that the premise is sound. And we know that the thought process of people wanting a place where they can get away from politics, the day to day news, they can get away from, you know, like you said, like the family photos and all of this, and they can get away from the Tick Tock dances, and then get away from all these things. And they can just have conversations about breaking sports news, the teams that they love, they can go on, and they can create communities of live audio rooms to talk about the game. While it’s going on. There’s a lot of cool things we’re building in. But we understand we need to build the I always say it’s a fine line between new features and familiarity. And that’s really what we’re trying to do right now give them the familiar, like use case experience that they would have utilizing a large social network, but do it with kind of new features, specifically custom built for sports. And we are in full engineering mode to deliver that experience. And all of our new users, we’re doing constant focus groups, feedback sessions, and listening to them tell us these are the things that are super important to us. One of the biggest sides of that, too, is we’re also building one of the most unique monetization structures in the world specific for content creators, so that the ones who are making their living off of doing this can finally, you know, monetize their social experience, which right now, you know, big names and social and in sports are not able to monetize their social, they basically get a contract from ESPN, they got a contract rentals, network, MLB, NHL, whatever. And that’s where their money comes from. And they just build their following and they try to keep their fame up on social, what if we gave them an opportunity to monetize their celebrity as well. And that’s what we did. So
Matt DeCoursey 16:41
it’s interesting right now the Creator battle, so it’s funny, Facebook now pays me to use Facebook. Right? You know, and like, I didn’t ask for that, you know. So my reels got, you know, I just been published in Rails, seven times a week, you know, all these different platforms. But at one point, apparently, I got enough watches and views and whatever, that I checked all the boxes of their, like, super creator thing. So they put me in the Facebook reels bonus thing. And you know, I mean, in half a month of February, I made 358 bucks. Okay, right. Just didn’t ask for it. I didn’t. I mean, I didn’t have to click a button to accept it, that that wasn’t really tough, because they served it up right in front of me. And then you kind of run into that a lot. I think that’s been a challenge. And we were talking and we gave a shout out to urban necessities. But one of the things I don’t think our listeners know, I actually consult with several, I guess you could call them influencers, like Eric Perkins is one of them. And he’s, he’s got 700,000 subscribers as a builder. He’s a home builder. So yeah, but the struggle is real. So like, how do you pull out money? How do you pull money out of that, that isn’t just your ad share revenue, because one of the things that with creators that they’re real uneasy about is like, you see all these people that are like, you know, have this YouTube channel, then they have a backup channel, because they’re paranoid that for some reason that is gonna get turned off. Sure. And sometimes it does, you know, you see a lot of people with a lot of followers with a lot and it’s, there’s some, I don’t know, they’re not getting thrown off the platforms, because they’re always playing nicely with people. But you know, but like, but that’s the thing. And so the thing is, is there’s a lot of opportunities out there now we’re in the age of the Creator, and you talk about like, all the stuff that you were doing with the Jaguars and fantasy football and I mean, I’m Dude, you’re recording this, I’m assuming that’s your home, I’m in my home. And like this, I mean, this is gonna, this this show is gonna go out to the Okay, and a month, but one month from publication, people in at least a at least 100 countries will have listened. And that’s that’s like a very answers. Yeah, that’s crazy. I mean, it is crazy. Because, you know, I mean, I’m almost 50 years old at this point, man. And and you talk about 20 years ago, that was impossible, you needed and network contract resources, and like everything to do that and an expertise and I guess that’s why I should mention halfway through you talk about like making a living, finding expert, software developers doesn’t have to be difficult, especially when you visit FullScale.io where you can build a software team quickly and affordably. Use the Full Scale platform to define your technical needs, and then see what available developers testers laters ready to join your team FullScale.io That’s part of the reason we do this show is helps us out, helps us advertise our business, but we used to sell sponsors and that, you know, sponsorships deals and stuff like that. And sometimes that’s a real pain in the ass to deal with. If like, you almost need someone to work on that full time and then you got to pay that person to work on it full time and then a year, like how much money do you have left after that? And there’s a lot to chase around. But yeah, I mean, so But so we’re a little fortunate in that regard, like we’re promoting one of our other business interests. But man, I know a lot of people I know a lot of people that have a lot of audience that have a lot of followers that have a lot of really good shit look good. They have a lot of good shit to say. And they’re like, I’m broke. Like, I’m paying money to do this. So yeah, so when you talk about your model at the start, like, why is it different from this battle? Like Facebook’s paying me because they, they want they’re trying to they’re competing with tick tock? And you know, like a lot of other stuff. They’re like, shit, how do we keep people in here and you know, get that content in there. So what how is yours different.
Josh Carney 20:39
So this is what this is, this kind of piggybacks off of what I told you what my this kind of revelation that I had about sports, because you remember, I told you, I was consulting on this other project as finance project. And they were trying to build, like I said, like, kind of like short form content for finance, because this was, this was back in, you know, 2019 2020, where there was that big rush of the retail trader, right, Robin Hood, we bought the crypto crypto went insane. What was funny is the retail trader, anybody could put in $1, and make two basically, because the market was just so out of whack. So everybody thought they were this masterful trainer. So this idea came up with let’s get all the content creators that make this content, give them a platform, and you know, and help teach people how to make money. I mean, I, which I still think is a super viable, you know, business plan. But that said, it took me down a path of researching all these content creators how they make money. And when I say I spent
Matt DeCoursey 21:34
all over the place.
Josh Carney 21:38
I spent weeks of my life, I would say almost months of my life in deep case studies of every major platform, you know, so the mothership at Google, what they were going to be launching with Google, you know, with YouTube shorts, which by the way, they just launched that new monetization model, you know, tick tock Twitch looking back all the way back in 2016 2017, to what they’re doing now, the fact that a $14 billion platform and they’ve still never made $1 in revenue, a profit, right? Like why and then also the most telling, one that I saw was mixer, and that case study, you know, Microsoft has unlimited money. And they dumped an enormous amount into creating a rival for Twitch for content creators, and they paid you know, Ninja, countless millions shroud, countless millions Galleon, all these big big name streamers, they paid them all this money to come over there. And yet, they had to close the doors, a company with unlimited money, closed it down, because they were hemorrhaging too much. And you know, so I went down this path, like, who is successfully making money for creators right now. And it sounds funny. But as I as I started going down the path of researching all these brands, that was one that kept popping back up that I was like, man, they’re doing something right for the Creator side, and honestly, even for themselves. And it just so happens that that was only fans. And as I start looking at the only fans model and determining Well, why is this model so successful for these creators, comparative to like you said, you know, you you’ve got
Matt DeCoursey 23:08
rewards based, it’s like, it’s like having your affiliates like Elliott’s for for referrals for FullScale.io. They don’t refer anything, they don’t get paid shit.
Josh Carney 23:20
Well, here’s what’s funny is 2016. You know, it’s kind of when they launch. And they basically did this off of like, $100,000, like, kind of investment early on to try to build this up. But it was really it was in 2020, when Bella Thorne and Cardi B decided that they were going to create accounts on there that every other person in the world decided they were going to do this because remember, this platform wasn’t originally for adult entertainment, it was just for, you know, for people to have premium subscriptions. But what they discovered is that utilizing an entertainment based model, where it was predominantly for an entertainment based, you know, business, which is now I guess, adult entertainment. You could have all of these ambassadors or people that you know, or were your creators out there promoting their own channel within your ecosystem. And then you could charge based on your own celebrity how much your subscription is a month. So you’re putting a bunch of free content out there advertising yourself and saying, Hey, but the premium stuff is behind the paywall, and the paywall is based off of my own celebrity or what I think I’m worth. As I started really diving into that revenue model, I started realizing that what is outside of adult entertainment, the second most popular entertainment brand realistically on the internet, sports. So thinking about that, I said, Well, why don’t we have the only fans but for sports, because the truth of the matter is some of the biggest sports celebrities in the world and athletes and spokespeople. They can’t watch it only fans even though the monetization model for that is great. They can’t because then they’re naturally going to be associated as an adult. entertainment industry.
Matt DeCoursey 25:01
Well, there’s a user perspective to like if you’re trying to get subscribers, and you’re got some dude that wants to talk about Jacksonville Jaguars. And he’s got to explain to his wife why there’s a fucking only fans charge on there, right? Maybe not as maybe not as, maybe not as explained
Josh Carney 25:19
the conversation with the wife, right? So the point is, is that I started looking at these models, and I said, okay, because I’m building out a pretty extensive like monetization piece, which includes things like ad revenue and ad share, and very aggressively comparing what the other content creation platforms are also doing something interesting. I’ll explain in a second, but that only fans model. And this is what I thought about because we’re building the content types. We are, for example, live streaming, right? So live video rooms, live audio rooms, which are very similar to clubhouse. But if you think about a guy like who’s you know, a major part of this are kind of senior board advisor, equity members, Michael Irvin, right, I think about Mike, if Michael Irvin is creating all the content he’s creating on social media anyway. And he decides, you know what, I’m gonna, I’m going to live stream during the Dallas Cowboys game, I’m going to open up a live room, and I’m going to call the game with my buddy. You know, maybe I’m gonna call Emmitt Smith. We’re going to call the game together the Cowboys game, we’re going to watch it, and anybody who wants to come hang out with us and get in live chat, ask us questions. Maybe I’ll invite a few people up on stage with me. What is that worth to a fan for a fan day experience? Right? What Michael can do now is now he can also outside of his own contracts and all the stuff that he has, where he makes money. Now, he can monetize a celebrity in a way on social he’s never had before through a premium subscription model. So he’s got all his free content that he’s publishing on stunt. And then he can say, Hey, join my live room, it’s X amount of dollars a month, if you want to subscribe to my premium, all that premium access members get this, as I started thinking about that model and thinking about athletes, spokespeople, celebrities, and then just the average guys that ended up, you know, growing this big following, or, you know, launching their own podcast, or, or just posting content all day, every day, if they had these premium, like subscriptions that said, if you really like who I am subscribed to my channel, it’s X amount, you could change the volume level at whatever you charge based on how popular you are, and what people think you’re worth. That, in my opinion, changes the content creator environment, especially in the sports side, because that’s what we saw working only fans, right, so and so charges, way more a month than this, you know, random person from, you know, the middle of, you know, the middle of America that nobody’s ever heard of, they’re not charging $100 a month, were some big celebrity that’s like, Hey, I’m gonna only fans, it’s 100 bucks a month, you know, all of a sudden, they can they can charge that. So that’s the exact same premise. We thought here, let’s give creators the ability to charge based on their own celebrity, be able to advertise themselves for free on the front end, here’s all my social, here’s my short form content, here’s my Twitter, live content. Here’s my live rooms, all of that, however, I’m going to do special stuff behind this paywall, that I think is where the content creator kind of space is going, I think you’re going to see that shift across multiple other different content platforms. The problem is, is that they are, they’re already integrated into certain ways creators make money, right? And they, they’re so huge, that it’s very difficult for them to change. We’re building from scratch, and I’ve got literally the guy who built YouTube TV as my head developer and CPL, I can build anything. So why don’t I build this from the ground up the way a Creator would want it built. And I think that this model is going to change the way a lot of these celebrities and spokespeople are able to monetize their content.
Matt DeCoursey 28:37
One of the one of the biggest expenses for any new venture like an app or a platform or anything, is that initial costs for the hype you have to generate and create just to get it moving. Now, you were using Cardi B as an example. I know that’s not sports, but she currently has 155 million followers on Insta. Yeah, so the thing is, is like and you I mean that’s I’m sure that’s a very attractive thing to your investors as well as you get a few of the right people in there. Like okay, what and this is back to people don’t like the term influencer but if that’s not a fucking influencer, I don’t know what it is because 55 million people that’s that and I know those aren’t all in the United States, but that’s approaching the same the same sample size is half of the US population.
Josh Carney 29:24
I know that’s commercial
Matt DeCoursey 29:28
you know, you just like look at that in general and like I mean, that’s and that’s this this interesting thing with the with the influencer and you know, this goes all the way down you’ve got like, you know, even down to the quote micro influencer like not me, dude, having 155 million followers on anything is quite abnormal. But you get people that have smaller amounts or smaller platforms. You even look at things like a podcast or whatever else is out there and like, I don’t know, man, that’s I will probably put About two and a half to 3 million downloads on this show this year. And that’s it still baffles me. I’m just like, wow, like, first off, thank you. Because you get with a lot of shit. Now, let’s talk about that for a second, because you’re competing with a lot of stuff you have. We’ve often said on this show that for many, the cowardly approach to entrepreneurship is quite wise. Now, what does that mean? First off, you’re brave if you’re an entrepreneur in general, but the cowardly approach is that, hey, I’m not going to go battle giants, I’m instead going to go do something that no one else is doing. And I’ll do it somewhere where everyone will leave me alone to get real good at it. And there are there is a lot of validity to that approach, like the true riches in the niches but I mean, you’re not you’re while you are, have a niche component, you’re still like, no matter what, competing with Facebook and stuff, tick tock, YouTube, a lot of that. I do like I really do like the organizational concept of it, like, hey, it’s just sports, I’m assuming there’s lots of rooms and teams and things I can chase down. They’re exactly what I want. Like, I’m a Kansas City Royals fan, which is not a huge population, and I’ll follow them and, and keep up with their shit. Even in the years they suck, like last year, and this year, certainly,
Josh Carney 31:16
and a lot of bad went to camp with the Kansas City Royals. So
Matt DeCoursey 31:21
it’s hard to like find people that want to talk about what you want to talk about. And then you know, there’s I don’t know, it’s like, you think the community that community building, in some cases would be a little more straightforward. But you’re usually commingled with that. So how are you going? What are your plans? And how do you deal with either a investors going, Well, dude, you’re competing with giants?
Josh Carney 31:41
Or how do you?
Matt DeCoursey 31:42
What’s your plan for? What’s your plan for navigating those waters?
Josh Carney 31:46
Sure. So a few things. Number one, one thing that you have to remember is, if you create a brand, your best bet is to try to be an ally to everyone and a competitor to no one because then it opens up the door.
Matt DeCoursey 32:02
They leave you alone,
Josh Carney 32:03
everybody leaves you alone, you got to remember, all of the current social platforms that we use all tend to serve some whatever purpose, right? And and that purpose generally is like, for example, Instagram is predominantly so I can see pictures of my friends and family and brands, and they can continue to market to me in a way based on my likes, and all this kind of stuff. If you look at Twitter, it’s basically Hey, it’s short, quick hits to keep you up to speed as fast as possible in the world of everything. Tick tock is really entertainment based short form quick hit videos, YouTube is VOD based a lot, a lot of what I call edutainment, right. So every single platform we’re using already has a real purpose in our lives in the way that we use it. What I’m trying to do is introduce something to the mix. That is something vastly different. Because right now, no matter what platform, you’re on that you know this from building businesses and brands and having this podcast, you just said it, you said look at all the stuff that’s out here, and yet I’m getting X amount of downloads, you know, a year. The point is, is that no matter what you’re doing right now, you’re competing against F Oh, yeah. Right. Well, if I ended up
Matt DeCoursey 33:11
all the time, Josh just said people get people have an ad, what is essentially an infinite number of choices for shit that they can do with their time besides pay attention to you.
Josh Carney 33:21
Right? And on top of that, too. I’ll give you I’ll give you an example on YouTube right now. You decide you want to create a piece of Golden State Warriors content, right? And you post that to YouTube. Now your warriors content is now in competition with actual warriors, right? From histories, cars, like armies, wars, warriors, the movie The musical warriors, you know, any past historical stuff like your everything that you are competing against now has
Matt DeCoursey 33:52
more time find something on Netflix, where you spend more time looking, and then you do actually watching? Yeah, all right.
Josh Carney 33:58
And that’s actually the case everywhere. So for example, if I’m breaking a news story about a specific team on Twitter, I’ve got just a few seconds before it’s bumped so far down based on my followers that all this other content is shuffling this information. So when I thought about that, and I thought about sports only specific, I thought about my own user experience, right, and what I want to see, so part of the, you know, the the IP that makes this platform so special is what we’re building kind of behind the curtain is this really high level functioning machine learning system that allows you to build what we call my view? Well, my view is and it launches here and just just about two months, you’re going to when you set up your account, you’re going to be able to select the sports that you’re interested in. You’re also going to be able to From there, select the teams that you’re interested in. From there, you’re even going to be able to dial in and select specific players and golfers and NASCAR drivers and pickleball players and whatever that you’re interested in. Being able to have what’s called my view On the homepage, you’re still gonna get an algorithmic based recommendation list based on things you followed or that you’ve liked or that you’ve interacted with. But at some point, I can change my my view, for example, on Sunday to be, I only want to see all my Jacksonville Jaguars brethren, right, and I want to interact with them, I can take my my view, and I can turn it on, and I set it to whatever I want. And all of a sudden now the only content that I see is stuff categorized specific to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the conversations, the live rooms, the short form content, what that does is two things. One, it allows me to build and interact with community easier, because they’re also just showing me what I want to see at that time. But the second thing it does is it really bolsters discoverability. And what I realized, and when you when you asked me like how are you going to compete against all these giants, all these people, I don’t want to, and I’m not going to, I’m the CEO of something, I will never delete my Twitter, right? Twitter has been I’ve been on since 2009. I’ve been on forever. And that’s just and I use it constantly. And I’m never going to delete my YouTube account, I’m not going to delete these things, because I use them for specific things. Stunt is specifically built for sports fanatics, and sports fans to be able to have conversations about just sports and escape the real world for a minute. And number two, get discovered for the content that they’re creative. And that the content,
Matt DeCoursey 36:23
that’s the content, Everybody I talked to has that question. They’re basically like, how do I get discovered? Like, how do you and everyone’s in this? It’s funny, everyone’s trying to pleasure the algorithm, which you kind of gotta do you know that they’re like, tickling the nuts of the fucking Facebook algo to do this, or do that. And it’s just like shit. And then, you know, and then sometimes it’s funny, as a content creator, I’ve talked about this a bunch, it’s like some memes, you make this like, and it’s like, good. It’s like actually something really good. You’d spend a lot of time and a little extra TLC. And you’ll put it out there and all you hear is wow, why? Because it just doesn’t get picked up by something for some reason, somehow. And then you can take your phone in the worst recording environment possible in the dark while you’re half drunk, and like record something that’s nine seconds, and it’ll go viral.
Josh Carney 37:18
And that was one of the biggest things that we talked about when we were building this infrastructure. And with our discoverability section that we’re working on right now. We started saying, Why does one tweet that means nothing, go absolutely viral. And five seconds later, you tweet again, something way more substantial, and it does it. And it’s all based on the fact that you are still at the mercy of what the algorithms on these platforms are forcing you to see. That’s one of the big reasons look at this mass exodus people want to do from Twitter, which by the way, I did want to add, when you talk about how are you competing? Well, right now, there’s a lot of people not happy with the state of Twitter, for example, I will tell you that I literally have celebrity spokespeople that are wanting to get involved in this project, saying, I will do anything if you can get me off Twitter, right. So there’s this whole vibe about that. And then let’s not forget that there are bills in nine states right now, and potentially nationwide to take tic TOCs off everyone’s phone. Right? It’s not Tiktok is no longer allowed on administrators and government employees. There’s this whole weird, you know, like, controversy around it, we don’t know if it’ll ever push forward. But the point is, is there are all these red flags popping up on these other social platforms. And we are trying to come to market right at the right time to ensure that the sports content we want to talk about and the sports content creators that make their livelihood off of, you know, entertaining us and talking and giving their opinions and analysis. And all of that has a place to live permanently going forward and allows for discoverability allows for people to have a voice and it’s funny, I tell all my internal staff here and contractors and everything, my measure of success, which every business you know, has its measures, how do you know you’ve made it? How, you know, I It’s not based on the user account, it’s not based off of gross revenue. It’s not any of that for me. I have started building this because of the experience I had back as a fantasy analyst and thinking what would have helped me grow my following get discovered do all that sells
Matt DeCoursey 39:20
actionable opportunities, actionable opportunities slide I told everyone
Josh Carney 39:25
on my team, we know we’ve made it when some random guy who would have have had three Twitter followers ever in his life. All of a sudden, starts growing a following and becomes almost like a mini celebrity on the platform. And the next thing we know, Barstool Sports or ESPN or you know whatever, cuts this guy a contract for some sort of content for them or you get basically kind of like the ninja story. Right? Well, I mean, if back in 2017 If you knew you could dye your hair blue and you know, start playing fortnight and get really good at it. Uh, you know, you would end up, you know, I don’t know, a couple of years later, I’m now thinking a multimillion dollar deal with Jerry Jones. I don’t know if you saw that the other day, it was really interesting. But the point is, is that you know, he grew up his celebrity enough to get contracts outside of video game streaming, right. He’s like the poster boy for our a guy like Guy, Dr. Disrespect what he’s done, you know, from going from playing video games to creating this kind of international icon character that now he’s getting contracts out with other major groups and affiliations and announcing draft picks for the San Francisco 40 Niners right? The point is, is that he’s did from his content creation, to a massive contract. That’s what I want for sports on for some of these, no named people to be discovered. For the characters, they develop the hot takes that they have, and hopefully, and you know, get those guys to show up on the biggest stages, because of the platform that we built. That’s how I know we’ll be successful. And we can do that.
Matt DeCoursey 40:58
Once again, with me today, Josh Carney, just the CEO and founder of the stunt app, go to the stunt.com. Now, we’ve talked so much about social media and different platforms, if you’re not following the Startup, Hustle podcasts or our hosts, you’re missing out, we’re publishing a lot of great stuff I mentioned Facebook’s paying me to use Facebook. And I’m publishing some very entertaining reels and shorts right now about what it’s like to travel internationally about what it’s like to eat weird food in the Philippines about what it’s like to deliver the life of an entrepreneur, the whole Startup Hustle theme and mission statement is to tell the real story of entrepreneurship. The pandemic made that a little more challenging, but it’s a lot more interesting now that we can go out and do a lot of cool stuff. Stay tuned, we’ve got some really great stuff coming in the future. Once again, today’s episode of Startup Hustle is powered by FullScale.io helping you build a software team quickly and affordably. And with that, it’s time for the founders freestyle Josh, I always love it when I have founders on the show. And I, I just I call it the founders freestyle, because you you get a freestyle on the mic to deliver whatever closing remarks that you’d like to deliver, however you’d like to, we’ve had people wrap saying do poetry do at all? So yeah, you’re up?
Josh Carney 42:16
Well, I appreciate it. I’m just gonna keep it super simple. If you love sports, if you’re listening to this podcast right now, the one thing that I would really love to hear from you is your thoughts, your feedback and your brain. Because right now you’ve got the opportunity to influence the next major social media platform that’s being brought to market and you’re able to actually deliver to us the things that would be important to you. And I just, I want you to think of if you could have been one of the first people on Tik Tok, or one of the first people on Twitch, how popular how famous would you be right now, if you are consistently creating content for one of those platforms, when I tell you that, that’s the direction we’re going. And we have the talent in the building to build something of that caliber, I’m not joking. And you have the opportunity right now to not only get involved at this early stage, but you also have the opportunity right now to help impact what is being built. And the truth of the matter is I have one of the best Chief Product officers in the world that’s building this. And he’s inviting you to come tell us what you want to see, and the next major social media platform in the world, especially if you’re a major fan of sports. So I invite you to go to the stunt.com or search the stunt in the App Store, download it, break it, use it, get through this beta version, watch the updates as they come, they’re going to start flowing twice a week. And by this point next year, you’re going to be a major part of what we’re building. And who knows, maybe you’ll be the next major sports celebrity. And you’ll be the guy that I’m talking about that said you know what? We’ve made it because so and so just got a major contract as a sports broadcaster or as an analyst, or really as just as a content creator who signed a major sponsorship. So I encourage you to download the app to help us shape the future of the way we talk sports, and I promise you there’s some really great stuff in store.
Matt DeCoursey 44:01
Well, well said my friend well said and for my freestyle, I got a couple things here. One I love the business model of, of helping other people get what they want. And then you kind of get what you want, like so much of my own success, growth and just all of it has come from that principle, whether it’s your own employees or the people on your platform at Full Scale. It’s our clients like, you know, like as if you can’t help other people when doing what you’re doing, then you’re gonna have a lot harder time and man it is so much easier to get people to get behind what you’re doing as an evangelist and telling people about it. Like one of the things we didn’t even get into is like, you talked about that power of the influencer, the micro influencer of anybody if the you know the hardest part of building any news startup, whether it’s online or like a retail store is getting people to come even know it’s there. And anything where you can pat you can source The power of the crowd to come help you promote what you’re doing the better you get people to share their opinion and hey, kind of share that with me even better. And if you can find business models and things like that, that almost have like an internal hype cannon around them, then you gotta get you gotta you’re onto a good thing. I mean, you still got to build a good product to give people an opportunity. I really liked what you’re doing, man, I want to keep up with this and invite you to come back down the road because I want to hear more about it. I love that I love any I’m re a real, real outspoken advocate right now of anything that puts the power back in the creator’s hands. Like, I was on live TV last week. And here’s the thing, I said this and that, you know, my PR guy was like, Oh, dude, you should be this is really good. And I said, bro, it’s okay. He’s like, Well, why is it just okay? I said, because more people will listen to my podcast today, then we’ll watch this live TV show. Right? Think about that people and then get to work starting your own thing. Look, you don’t have to have millions of subscribers, followers or even views to be successful if 50 people would show up and hear what you had to say tomorrow. Would that be a win? Because that’s all you need. As far as listeners downloads, views, any of that success is determined at whatever level it works for you and I will tell you one thing having debt we started this podcast we had no listeners, everybody I know listeners. Everybody had no viewers, followers, subscribers, any of that at some point. All big businesses. Were one person at some point or three or they were was it just mega right away. So you gotta get to work success demands payment in advance to start writing those checks. Josh, I’ll catch up with you down the road.
Josh Carney 46:39
Yeah, man. Sounds great. Thanks for having me.