Case and point was when John & I stumbled across $499 flights from Sao Paulo to Paris with a catch: we had to spend a week in Morocco. Given neither of us had been to Morocco/Africa before we were pretty into it. Then our friend Ian decided to meet us because why not get your camel licence in the Sahara.
Fast forward many months and I finally put together a quick vid. from our trip. Morocco is sweet.
It’s that 126 minute long (fictional/realistic) summary of what’s completely wrong with the finance industry. There’s this particularly famous quote by the main character Gordon Gekko:
I’ve heard this quote recycled by Investment Bankers and Fund Managers in relation to their occupation and to capital raising. I get it: you go hard or go home.
The irony is they’re pretty wrong. They sleep, eat, socialise, and (hopefully) exercise. Their work – unless seamlessly and continuously transferred from New York to Singapore to London – pauses with life outside the suit and glass skyscraper.
When we take breaks to live life our technology and platform keeps turning over: pages load, videos stream, offer documents are read and money is invested. At all hours. On all days.
PledgeMe is now ten successful campaigns deep since Nov 2014. When our second capital raise closes at 10PM 24 July we will have raised somewhere between $2.8 and $3.2 million dollars for Kiwi companies.
Ten successes later here is when pledgers utilise our our platform to invest**
Financial Technology has made Gordon Gekko’s mantra a reality in the investment context and PledgeMe is here to use this power for good not evil, pal.
** Yeastie Boys aren’t included because they’re awesome and raised a world record half a million dollars in half an hour; therefore would have messed the data up (yes Yeasties’ you are the exception & not the norm)
** PledgeMe 2 – our second equity raise isn’t included because it hadn’t closed at the time of this post.
There was no fooling about it on 1 April 2014 when the Government legislated changes permitting equity crowdfunding as an additional framework of capital raising and investing for Kiwis.
Equity Crowdfunding was a USD $1.1 billion industry globally in 2014 (a growth of 182% year-on-year) and places New Zealand in the unique position of being on the forefront of this sector in many ways.
One year and one week into this uncharted ‘FinTech’ territory and it’s impressive how both Kiwi business owners and investors have embraced this new opportunity.
Here’s where equity crowdfunding campaigns are at (7/4/2015):
** PledgeMe currently has one current/successful campaign
With five equity campaigns live there has been nearly $250,000 of investment through PledgeMe‘s platform in the past 24 hours. Part of this investment saw SellShed blow by their targeted raise, meaning when their campaign closes on Thursday they will receive all pledged investment less PledgeMe’s 5% success fee.
The thing that I find most powerful about equity crowdfunding is that as the sun sets around NZ (or greying skies turn black if you live in Wellington) and traditional capital markets retire for some rest:
FinTech platforms don’t operate in the way traditional capital investment does.
That’s because click throughs, page/video views, offer doc. downloads, likes, re/tweets, shares, posts, mentions, comments and (most importantly) investors and members of your crowd don’t keep office hours.
Editor’s note: I’m happy to update the above statistics that two PledgeMe campaigns closed Thursday 9 April. Both were successful and have resulted in a collective $917,000 of capital raised for SellShed and Pineapple Heads, meaning nine successful raises and five current opportunities.
The period of anticipation is an opportunity for increased revenue through sponsorship activation, strengthening your strategic partnerships and up-selling.
This is not a one size fits all initiative and to add real additional value to your consumers you need to:
Once located, try and identify possible source(s) for this spike. Examples are: changes in your price, active or recent promotional campaigns, or any other unplanned traction received.
Look at two main consumer elements:
So… you’ve found initial target(s).
This can be done in a number of ways. I recommend:
One of mine is being asked to fill out “The World’s Shortest Survey (2.7 seconds)” by Grist.org… who can say no to that?
What was your highlight of:
What are you looking forward to most:
Your answers to these questions are likely to involve doing something rather thanbuying something as popularised more than a decade ago by Psychologists Leaf Van Boven and Thomas Gilovich in their paper “To Do or to Have? That Is the Question.”
A recent paper “Waiting for Merlot” co-authored by Gilovich takes this a step further by researching the differences in anticipation during experiential and material purchases. The key finding was that the anticipation of an experience is more exciting and pleasant than that of a material purchase, regardless of price, and experiential anticipation actually adds to the total value of a purchased experience.
So, someone has committed to an experience from you or your business… what are you doing to capitalise on this positive anticipation?
This opportunity begins at the point of purchase, not the point of entry.
What does this mean?
Pre-consumptive timelines are going to vary, so it’s important is to look through data and find common paths, or lines taken, to initially target (this is your low hanging fruit.)
These lines to consumption are created through analysing your sales data to determine some common subsets within segments (follow up post.)
This was originally a LinkedIn post
After realising the most economical – and most awesome – path back to New Zealand would lead me towards Europe for the first time in my life it forced me to make decisions on where to go and what to see on this whistle-stop tour.
After three months logging serious kilometres on buses around South America I was over the idea of any time consuming or overnight travel, so my soft play on arrival for a 12 day tour was moving at my leisure from Paris, through Brussels and Amsterdam before ending this visit in Stockholm.
Two of us were making our way from Morocco and fortunately a friend from Victoria moved to France two years ago for his Master’s and has since landed a job in Paris. So not only did we have a place to crash, we also had home court advantage on the: who, what, where, when and how of Paris. It really doesn’t get better than that.
One of the first nights in town we met up for dinner and a few drinks ‘after work’ (for Nick, that is). As the night was winding down (or so I thought) we started discussing how amazing this city is and how we as North Americans aren’t as fortunate to have the rich history and architecture that makes Europe… Europe.
Ten minutes later, the three of us had set off on a late night bike tour of Paris. We rode the streets for 2-3 hours and every few minutes we were stationary looking at one of the most magnificent buildings you’ve ever seen. Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Pompidou, Saint Chapelle, Champs Elysees, Bastille… you get the idea.
Another interesting thing to note with our adhoc tour is the whole thing was done using the city’s transit system, where a transit pass (day, week or month) entitles you to use Paris’ bicycles. So we rode the city to the first hours of the following day on city bikes, using the designated bike lanes. Between a pass and Uber the city is yours… World class city (or as some would say ‘stud city’.)
I think I said the word ‘unbelievable’ about 100 times that night… because it was. That was an incredible experience and such an amazing way to see a city as beautiful as Paris. We were very fortunate to have local knowledge on our side that night; Nick was able to amplify my time in Paris immensely. That’ll go down as one of my favourite nights this whole trip.
To put the icing on the cake, the photo of us (shown above) at the Eiffel Tower is as epic as it is fitting. John’s Mum got into and won a fight with breast cancer as I was moving to New Zealand and since it was breast cancer awareness month the tower was sporting the familiar logo along with a brilliant pink lighting. Since we all left on our travels she has been our biggest fan throughout so it was a very emotionally charging picture to have taken and one we all will cherish.
I’ve spent the last few months of my trip essentially winging it. Never booking the next stage of my trip before completing the most recent. Be it travel by plane, train, bus or… camel?
With a return deadline to NZ approaching quickly I conducted some heavy research on options back. Counter intuitively, from Eastern South America the cheapest option was via Europe and after scanning some flights/routes I came across a suspiciously cheap flight from São Paulo to Paris (via Morocco). With another friend of mine looking at a similar timeframe on leaving South America for Europe he looked into it further and found a way to break up the flight at no extra cost – so we did, giving us a week in Morocco.
Morocco has always been on my radar as an incredible place to travel but it was never part of the plan on this trip. Fast forward to the end of September and the two of us found ourselves reuniting at the São Paulo Airport in the wee hours of the morning after going separate ways post-World Cup to catch a flight onwards to a new country and continent for the both of us.
Morocco is unlike anywhere else I’ve seen or been and going to an ex-French colony with a 99% Muslim population after almost five months in South America was a culture shock, to say the least.
We had another good friend who met us in Morocco for a pretty full on week. Going from Casablanca to Marrakech then onwards south for a 3-day trek which extended down to the Sahara Desert – and included camels and sleeping in tents in the desert.
After returning to Marrakech from our trek we decided to unwind by having a night out at Le Bar Churchill, which renamed itself to celebrate one if their most loyal customers – Winston Churchill. After a very long three days it was exactly what we were after – world class cocktails and entertainment. It was the perfect evening to cap off a very unplanned visit to Morocco.
After this I head to Paris to catch up with a good friend of ours who’s been living in the city for a couple of years before heading onwards to Belgium, Netherlands and Sweden to catch up with friends, new and old.
I know this flying by the seat of your pants story sounds very similar to what comes from a gamblers mouth after a winning big. I have definitely had a few wins and losses on the board by winging it – but this was a big win and a very cool, and unexpected, week in Morocco.
In line with other video updates, I’ll keep the copy to a minimum:
Here’s a highlight reel from the Salar de Uyuni (Salt Flats) trip, which went from Uyuni, Bolivia to San Pedro, Chile. This three-day; two-night trip is a massive highlight on my South American adventure and the Salt Flats themselves were a catalyst to me deciding to head south and not north six weeks ago, and after this experience, I know it was the right decision.
This place and trek is epic, I highly recommend making sure you do a tour to the Salar and see as much of Bolivia as you can if you’re planning to travel this part of the world (that is, unless you’re Israeli).
Beyond the tour itself I also was very fortunate to take the trip with an incredible crew of people and had an awesome guide, it made such incredible experience that much better. Jungle Speed reunion soon, yeah?
Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia:
It’s been done for a few weeks now but the Bolivian Internet Gods weren’t wanting to let this YouTube video go live.
Here’s the final highlight video from our time at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Once in a lifetime experience.