show episodes
 
A Media Operator is a community for entrepreneurs and operators in the digital media space. This podcast is a natural extension of the newsletter (www.amediaoperator.com) and community that has already been built. Each week, I will interview entrepreneurs and operators that are building these media companies. Over the course of approximately an hour, we'll discuss their businesses, their success and failures, and, ultimately, what they learned about building media companies. This podcast wil ...
 
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show series
 
Andrew Gazdecki is the founder and CEO of MicroAcquire, the world’s most founder-friendly startup acquisition marketplace. MicroAcquire helps entrepreneurs buy and sell startups. After founding and later selling two successful startups, Andrew decided there needed to be a better way to connect buyers and sellers in the startup marketplace. He found…
 
Sherrell Dorsey is the founder and CEO of The Plug, a publication and community for news, insights and analysis on trends in Black innovation. The Plug features stories that show the substantive ways Black people engage with the innovation economy, including analyses of modern technologies. On today’s show, Sherrell shares about building an audienc…
 
Matthew Kepnes runs the popular travel blog, Nomadic Matt, and also writes a successful newsletter. In fact, Matt’s newsletter is one of the biggest I’ve had on the show. His book, How to Travel the World on $50, is a New York Times Best Seller. After a 2005 trip to Thailand, Matt decided to leave his job, finish his MBA, and travel the world. Sinc…
 
Andrew Warner has been part of the internet startup scene since 1997. Andrew and his brother built a $30 million per year online business, which they later sold. After taking an extended vacation and doing some traveling, Andrew started Mixergy. Mixergy helps ambitious upstarts learn from some of the most successful people in business. Andrew and I…
 
Nick deWilde is a Product Marketing Principal at Guild Education. Guild is a fast-growing startup that partners with Fortune 500 employers. Guild unlocks opportunities for America’s workforce via education and upskilling. Nick also runs his newsletter, The Jungle Gym. The Jungle Gym helps readers build a more fulfilling career that integrates work …
 
Kimberly Brooks is a contemporary American artist and author. Kimberly integrates landscape, figuration and abstraction to address subjects of history, memory and identity. Her work has been exhibited and featured internationality. Kimberly received her bachelor’s degree in literature from U.C. Berkeley, and was Valedictorian. She has taught art as…
 
My guest on this episode is music industry veteran, Jay Gilbert. Jay wears a lot of hats. He’s a musician, photographer, marketer, speaker, and music executive. Jay has worked as a creative consultant to many record companies and artists. He hosts The Music Biz Weekly Podcast, is a Co-founder of Label Logic, and runs the weekly music newsletter You…
 
Sean McCabe is the founder and CEO of seanwes media, and Daily Content Machine. Sean is a prolific and successful creator, author, and influencer. His course, Learn Lettering, made $80,000 in the first 24 hours. For nearly a decade his podcast, blog, and courses have helped creators grow their brands, content, and skill sets. Sean’s website is a tr…
 
Dave Pell has been writing online for almost as long as the internet has existed. His popular newsletter, NextDraft, has over 140,000 subscribers. NextDraft covers the day’s ten most fascinating news stories, delivered with a fast and pithy wit. Dave has been a syndicated writer on NPR, Gizmodo, Forbes, and Huffington Post. He earned his bachelor’s…
 
Jessica DeFino is a freelance beauty journalist living in Los Angeles, California. For the past seven years Jessica has been writing, researching, editing, and publishing about the beauty and wellness industry. Her work has appeared in Vogue, The Cut, Fashionista.com, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Business Insider, SELF, HelloGiggles, Harper's Bazaar…
 
Ali Abdaal is a Doctor, writer, podcaster, entrepreneur, and YouTube sensation. Ali has grown his YouTube subscriber base to over 2 million, and writes a weekly newsletter titled Sunday Snippets. Sunday Snippets covers productivity tips, practical life advice, and the best insights from across the web. Ali studied medicine at Cambridge University. …
 
Matt Ragland is a productivity expert and full-time content creator. He has worked for companies such as AppSumo.com, ConvertKit, and Podia. Matt graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor’s degree in recreation & tourism management. Matt was one of the earliest members of the team at ConvertKit, where he was employee number five. Sin…
 
Sahil Bloom is Vice President at Altamont Capital Partners, a generalist investment fund managing over $2.5 billion in capital. At Altamont, Sahil helps lead the consumer products and services sector. Sahil also participates in board activities at Altamont’s portfolio companies Fox Racing, and Brixton. Sahil is an angel investor in over 25 tech sta…
 
Charli Prangley is the Creative Director at ConvertKit. Charli has a bachelor's degree in design, with an emphasis on visual communication, from Massey University. Before working at ConvertKit, Charli worked as a designer for companies such as Mitsubishi Electric, Xero, and her own Liner Note Kids. Born in New Zealand, Charli now lives in Valencia,…
 
Robert Glazer is the founder and CEO of Acceleration Partners, a global marketing agency. Robert is also the co-founder and Chairman of BrandCycle, an affiliate marketing and content monetization platform. Acceleration’s accolades under Robert’s direction include Glassdoor’s Employees’ Choice Awards, Entrepreneur’s Top Company Culture, Inc. Magazin…
 
Ryan Sneddon is a self-described CEO and emperor of local news. Ryan is building a hyperlocal newsletter empire one city at a time, starting with Annapolis, MD. Ryan’s newsletter, Naptown Scoop, is an email to the residents of Annapolis containing all pertinent news and events. It's an awesome community of residents and business owners coming toget…
 
Cherie Hu is an accomplished musician, an award-winning writer, a columnist, entrepreneur, and self-described “professional overthinker.” Cherie specializes in analyzing, tracking and critiquing innovation in the global music business. Cherie earned her bachelor’s degree in statistics from Harvard, studied piano and music theory at The Juilliard Sc…
 
Jack Butcher is the founder of Visualize Value, a design, consulting, and educational company in New York City. Jack spent 10 years working in advertising for Fortune 100 companies as a creative director for multi-billion dollar brands that include Amazon, Nokia, McDonald’s, and Mercedes-Benz. It was a job he found enjoyable but constraining. In se…
 
Alex Lieberman is the co-founder and chairman of Morning Brew. Morning Brew is a media company bringing informative and digestible business news to your inbox every morning. They educate nearly 3,000,000 daily readers on the latest news from Wall Street to Silicon Valley. Alex also hosts The Founder’s Journal Podcast where he gives listeners a “bac…
 
Eric Jorgenson is a writer, course creator, blogger, and podcaster. He is also on the founding team of Zaarly, an online marketplace for hiring home service providers. Eric has been publishing online since 2014, and operates a monthly newsletter. His business blog, Evergreen, has educated and entertained over a million readers. Eric is the author o…
 
Steph Smith is a growth marketer, writer, and indie maker. In 2019, Steph founded Integral Labs. Integral Labs supports top tech companies with technical writing, content strategy, marketing, and analytics. In 2020, Steph became the Senior Manger of Trends.co. Trends identifies emerging patterns in business months before they become mainstream. In …
 
Nat Eliason is the founder of Growth Machine, a successful SEO and content marketing agency. Nat also teaches the popular Roam course, Effortless Output. Nat earned his B.A. in Philosophy from Carnegie Mellon University, and has worked for companies such as Zapier, and Sumo Group. Nat co-hosts the Made You Think podcast with Neil Soni. Nat also wri…
 
Ann Handley is the founder and Chief Content Officer for MarketingProfs, a marketing and training education company with more than 600,000 subscribers. She is a well-known public speaker, and has been writing a newsletter called Total Annarchy for the last three years. Ann is also a Wall Street Journal best-selling author of Everybody Writes: Your …
 
Dickie Bush is a full time Portfolio Manager based in New York City. He is a graduate of Princeton, where he received a degree in Financial Engineering and played on the football team. Dickie writes a weekly newsletter called Dickie’s Digest where he shares thoughts and links on growth of all kinds, including personal, intellectual, physical, netwo…
 
Jason Feifer is the Editor in Chief at Entrepreneur, an American magazine and website that carries news stories about entrepreneurship, small business management, and business. He also hosts a podcast called Build for Tomorrow, and he is the author of a forthcoming book titled Build for Tomorrow, Not for Yesterday. Jason is a unique blend of indivi…
 
Veni Kunche runs Diversify Tech, a newsletter-based business all about helping people who are underrepresented break into the tech world. After working as a Software Engineer since 2003, her main goal now is to help make the tech industry inclusive. Veni’s got a really interesting business model: a mix of sponsorships and also a job board, taking a…
 
Venture capitalist Li Jin left Andreessen Horowitz to start her own firm, Atelier Ventures. She started Atelier to fund a specific vision of the world: a world in which people are able to do what they love for a living and to have a more fulfilling and purposeful life. In addition to being an investor, Li is a prolific writer and podcaster, produci…
 
Mario Gabriele is the founder of The Generalist. His mission? To bring the most interesting tech writing to your inbox, every week. And he’s not doing it alone, either: Mario works with a team of contributors to deliver new ideas from some of the most original minds in venture capital and tech. In this episode, Mario talks about how and why he left…
 
Sam Parr founded The Hustle, a top-flight newsletter that he grew to almost 2,000,000 subscribers… and just sold to HubSpot! Tune in to hear the whole story of how Sam grew a successful newsletter to seven figures per month in revenue, and the roller coaster ride of selling his small business. Despite his success with a paid newsletter, Sam has lot…
 
Naomi Shah is the founder and CEO of Meet Cute, an audio romcom media company. With a focus on creating consistent 15-minute episodes versus trying to aim for hits, Meet Cute is building a robust catalog of IP that the company could use in the future for exciting opportunities. During this episode, we talked about a lot, but a few things jumped out…
 
Codie Sanchez runs the amazing newsletter Contrarian Thinking, whose topics include passive income, generational wealth, contrarian investing, and learning from strivers who think big. Her motto is “Question everything and stack income streams”, and that’s exactly what we talk about in this episode. Not just “how to build a newsletter”, but one of …
 
Packy McCormick writes the popular newsletter Not Boring, which is all about strategy and investing, from big companies to small. Packy was the VP of experience at a company called Breather, but when he left that role to start another startup he ended up creating a blockbuster newsletter instead! Not Boring has grown to over 30,000 subscribers. Pac…
 
Jesse Jacobs and Mike Kerns are co-founders of The Chernin Group, an investment firm known for their involvement in companies including Barstool Sports, Food52, MeatEater, and so many more. Part of the reason they have found such success is because they have been diligent with executing their thesis.…
 
Today’s interview is with Nathan Baschez. There aren’t too many people more familiar with the creator economy than Nathan. He started his own company with Hardbound and was the first employee and VP of Product at Substack in the early days. Now Nathan runs a company called Every, which is a bundle of premium newsletters. In this episode we dive int…
 
Khe Hy’s been called the “Oprah for Millennials” by CNN, and his writing is all about transforming your relationship with time, work, money, and, ultimately, yourself. Today we talk about how he runs RadReads, his newsletter for over 25,000 people. It’s an incredible newsletter where Khe gets super tactical about Notion, but also goes deep on livin…
 
David Nemetz is the GM of Culture & Innovation at Bustle Digital Group, overseeing brands including Inverse, Input, and Mic. He is also the former co-founder of Bleacher Report, which unlike many digital media companies that started at a similar time, actually had a successful exit.By Jacob Cohen Donnelly
 
Louis Nicholls is the co-founder of SparkLoop, an email newsletter referral program where you can have each of your subscribers refer their friends to unlock cool rewards. SparkLoop is amazing. They’re growing really quickly in the audience-building space and ConvertKit actually gives away free SparkLoop accounts to all of our creative pro customer…
 
Elizabeth Bramson-Boudreau is the CEO and Publisher of MIT Technology Review, the oldest technology magazine in the world. Over the past few years, the business has been going through a transformation of building out the tools and processes to run a digital-first media business.By Jacob Cohen Donnelly
 
Dan Frommer runs a popular newsletter called The New Consumer, which discusses topics on technology and consumer brands. Beginning his career at Forbes, Dan has a long history in the technology field. His extensive experience includes Editor in Chief at Recode, Vox Media’s tech and business news publication, and technology editor at Quartz. He also…
 
Tiago Forte is one of the world’s foremost experts on productivity. He runs Forte Labs, an education company that helps knowledge workers use technology to become more productive. He earns over $1,000,000 per year by using his 40,000-subscriber newsletter to sell his online masterclass, Build a Second Brain. In this interview, Tiago shares newslett…
 
Scott Brodbeck is the founder, editor, and publisher of Local News Now, a network of hyperlocal media properties. What started as a single guy with a camera and a police scanner has turned into a media company with a small staff serving the D.C. area through multiple websites, both owned and through partnerships.…
 
Lenny Rachitsky sold his company to Airbnb years ago and he spent a bunch of time there as a product manager, working on growth. Now Lenny’s full-time job is his simply-titled “Lenny’s Newsletter”, where he shares everything he’s learned about building products and teams. With over 3,200 paying subscribers, Lenny’s Newsletter brings him a larger in…
 
Byrne Hobart is a chartered financial analyst who loves writing about the intersection between finance and technology. He writes The Diff, one of Silicon Valley’s most popular newsletters. In this episode, we dive into how Byrne launched his newsletter, how much he’s earning, and how he publishes five times a week! You’ll learn why Byrne isn’t worr…
 
Dan Runcie is the founder of Trapital, the newsletter that breaks down the business of hip hop. We learn all about his favorite hip hop artists, of course, but he also shares what indie creators can learn from the world of hip hop and so much more. Having switched from a lucrative paid newsletter to a consulting business, Dan explains the thinking …
 
Dan Oshinsky was the Director of Newsletters at both Buzzfeed and The New Yorker. Today he runs his own email consultancy called Inbox Collective. Dan has seen newsletters from the early days, and has been instrumental in developing the newsletter strategy for some of the largest publications around. In this fantastic interview, Dan shares takeaway…
 
Anne-Laure Le Cunff is the founder of Ness Labs, which applies neuroscience research to productivity and creativity. In addition to writing articles and running a growing community, Anne-Laure also writes a newsletter subscribed to by over 25,000 “mindful makers”. In this conversation, we talk about building up a newsletter audience from zero. Anne…
 
Nick Friese is the founder and CEO of Digiday Media, a company with three verticals: Digiday, ModernRetail and Glossy. Friese started the company during the Great Recession and has gone through a tremendous journey building this company with events, membership and marketing services. On building membership The membership product at Digiday started …
 
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