I hope you’re all doing great!
Long time no see. The last time I posted something was a bit more than a month ago.
Time for a little update, and see what’s going on in the backstage of Snowball.
Let’s start with (i) a little update regarding Snowball, the Newsletter, then about (ii) the ongoing projects I’m currently working on, and finally about (iii) the mid/long-term vision of Snowball.
So how’s the Newsletter going?
I/ Update About Snowball, the Newsletter
In short, it’s going great!
🎂 Snowball, the Newsletter has turned one today! I sent the very first email titled “Tenir un budget - avant de faire une boule de neige il faut ? ⛄️” on March the 3rd 2020.
The Premium (or paid) version of Snowball will turn one in about two months on the 28th of April.
💯 First big milestone: the total email list has reached 10,100 subscribers or about 841 new subscribers per month on average. And… ⬇️
💯 Second big milestone: Snowball has reached the $10,000 of MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenues)! This milestone has been reached in less than 10 months. Never thought I could make more with a newsletter than I’ve ever done with a regular job.
📈 The open rate has increased for the free version of Snowball during the first weeks of 2021 with more than 60 % for each email I sent.
📈 The open rate for the Premium version of Snowball is still high, and around 75%.
📈 These high open rates make me feel pretty confident about the added value for Snowball subscribers. Especially when you look at how long these newsletters usually are.
📉 The churn rate is still way below 2%.
😍 More than a hundred persons have decided to pay above the 60€/year price tag to access a private communication line with me on Whatsapp.
II/ Current Projects I’m Working On
As I probably already said (I think), I’m focusing Q1 & Q2 2021 on administrative stuff such as:
Getting the CIF (conseiller en investissement financier) certification.
Incorporating Snowball. Probably in the US with a subsidiary in France in order to use Fairmint to raise some funds with the community, and to let them (hopefully) participate in the success of Snowball. Hey, that’s also part of the grander vision of Snowball to help people build a better financial future.
But in the meantime, I’m of course working on other things! Here’s a glimpse at these other projects:
I’ll launch really soon a daily newsletter on WhatApp to try this new, more personal channel. Already beta testing it. Working with a tiny team currently building the “Substack for WhatsApp”.
The new Snowball hub that’ll replace totally (or partially) Substack and will inherit the new visual identity.
As soon as I have the CIF certification I’ll launch the new Financial/tax Advice product.
I’m also building the V0 of Les Flocons, the organization I launched and financed by Snowball revenues. More about that soon!
📚 🤫 Oh and don’t tell anyone, but you might see the little Snowball mascot in some bookshops in France in 2021/early 2022…
This leads us to the mid/long-term vision.
III/ The Mid/Long-term Vision of Snowball
The most common question people ask me when I talk about Snowball is:
“Ok, but what do you want Snowball to become?”
Short answer: something much bigger than it currently is.
Long answer? Where should I start?
Let’s start with the mid-term vision (probably 5+ years).
It might seem pretty optimistic, and ambitious when you look at the current ecosystem with all the competitors popping around every corner, but I want snowball to become your wealth management hub.
In a nutshell, your personal finance Super App.
I dropped the bomb!
That’s ambitious, but that’s where I wanna go. That’s where I feel I could have a real impact on people’s lives while having a lot of fun building it. Indeed, for me, your personal financial health is almost as important as your, well, as your health. Especially in our capitalistic world where there are some rules, and you need to play within these rules if you wanna win or just survive. Most people don’t know how to play. I want Snowball to help them play their best game and reach a place they feel comfortable living in.
I want Snowball, the company (not the newsletter) to be centered around 3 pillars:
Education and growth. Already started with Snowball the newsletter. I want to give people the knowledge they need to make the right decision. You need to understand the game to play well, and you need the right non-biased information.
Financial and tax advice. Even if you’ve got the knowledge in front of you, sometimes it’s hard to connect the dots in a complex world. That’s why experts might be useful. I want people to access instantly non-biased, modern, and understandable advice. Fuck the jargon. Fuck outdated advice.
A Super App (and her Mini Apps) to invest your money. Today, there are hundreds of different apps to invest your money. Crypto, stocks, real-estate, NFTs, gold, life insurances, etc. I want people to access all these things in one single Super App and be able to automate if they want, most of their strategies. All of this while accessing non-biased data to make the right decision and not something like “buy this stock because everybody is buying this stock” as you can find on most trading apps today:
These pillars are important, but whats is even more important is the foundation on which I want to build these cornerstones.
I want to build a very friendly product. Not your typical white & blue, super high mega tech, Fintech, or this product made for professional day traders. I want Snowball to appeal to as many people as possible and not only an elite. My goal is not to make the rich richer, but to help ANYBODY discover and reach their financial goals.
I want to build an open and transparent company. The finance world has always been opaque, full of jargon, hard to understand, and built around complicated business models and shady advisors. I want to say goodbye to all of this stuff, and build something extremely transparent and understandable. It means being transparent about figures, relationships with partners, etc.
I want to build a flexible company. Having worked for a “future of work” and written an article about the death of the firm, I believe in more open, and flexible ways of building companies. Remote, working with freelancers while giving them access to equities, etc.
I do not want to fall into the casino trap just like eToro or Robinhood did. Gamification is great but when you use it ad-nauseam you just harm your customers, and I do not want to harm my customers. I want them to make money and not lose money. When you look at disclaimers on eToro or Robinhood you realize that around 70 % of people “playing” with options or CFDs are losing money. How the hell, can you say that your mission is to help people build a better financial future while selling this kind of financial product to inexperienced investors? Did I miss something?
Ok, that’s the mid-term vision. It’s super ambitious, it’ll need a lot of work, a great execution, and there are more probabilities that it’ll fail than succeed, but I’ll do my best to turn it into a success.
To sum up, I want to create a Super App, a hub, that will help people build the financial future they want to build without any bias, or any feature pushing them to make the wrong decisions. That why Behavioral Economics and Behavioral Finance will play an important role in the construction of Snowball.
The vision is still a little blurry, but it’s getting clearer and clearer.
The Long Term Vision 10+ years
Finance is important, but I have more areas where I’d love to have an impact, and I believe that Snowball can be the umbrella of much more than just a financial product.
Some of you might ask why I chose a .xyz domain name for Snowball (www.snowball.xyz), but from the very beginning, my plan was to expand in other areas. I love finance, but there are much more domains that I love, and I feel I’d like to put a dent on.
Education, Housing, Manufacturing, Transportation… There are dozens of topics that I’m passionate about, but I’d like to focus on topics that could have a true and meaningful impact on people’s lives. Education, Housing, Finance, and Health are four topics I believe might get along pretty well under the Snowball umbrella.
I also believe that many synergies can exist among those topics. It’s hard for me at the moment to clearly define the future of Snowball, but as soon as the ball gets rolling, it’ll garner many positive and meaningful things around itself. Luck attracts luck. Kindness attracts kindness. Positivity attracts positivity. Let’s hope all these things work like compound interests. 😉
Talk to you soon.