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Take 06. The cadence; virtual care's TAM; flywheel of Epic Games
Hi, welcome to Double Take, curated links on product, health tech, and digital media.
The best products of the moment enjoy a cult following. Here are a few thoughts about what gives life to product, and how to add that sprinkle of magic that is 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒅𝒖𝒄𝒕 𝒆𝒔𝒔𝒆𝒏𝒄𝒆 ✨.
By the way, have you tried Lunch Club? It facilitates curated 1:1 professional connections with relevant people. The weekly fireside chats with founders and investors brewed great discussions. If you need an invite link: here.
🐦 Should you have built it in the first place? Great thread about why some new products fail despite a seemingly robust feedback cycle, and how to use CPSR (Customer Problem Stack Rank) to identify the true priority of customer’s problem.
The Cadence. Having an operating cadence can turn startup chaos into a military style operation. David Sacks gave this presentation at the SaaStr Summit recently, dissecting how startups going through a growth spurt (eg. from 50 - 500 people) can create “the cadence” with these 2 systems:
💰System 1 (sales/finance) orienting around the quarterly close
📦System 2 (product/marketing) orienting around the product launch event
These 2 synchronized systems —> ran on a quarterly plan —> snapped together with an offset —> creates the operating cadence. There are huge compounding effects to shipping 4 great quarters a year, most companies are lucky to ship one. Worth a watch.
The new class of productivity & social products is like pop culture. The last wave of successful products are ones that “does exactly what it says on the package”. They found a clear problem and a solution, and executed it to perfection. Ben Evans observes a new wave of productivity and social products (like TikTok, ClubHouse) that are less predictable and more akin to pop culture. They’re capturing intangible things about the way we work and share. It’s much harder to produce a TAM for these products.
📠 Health Tech
Up to $250 Billion of US healthcare spend could be virtualized. Mckinsey’s telehealth report outlines the potential for telehealth. You know a new model is sticking around when consumers are adopting: US consumers using telehealth grew from 11% in 2019 to 46% today. Mckinsey predicts 20% of all Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial insurance spend could be carried out by telehealth. Capturing this opportunity for technology companies means developing scenarios for telehealth usage will evolve post pandemic, and develop virtual offerings.
Microsoft launches Cloud for Healthcare. Microsoft’s cloud service brings together existing products plus new capabilities to enable more high-value workflows. For example, the Bookings app can schedule telehealth visits in Microsoft Teams. There is apparently a chatbot to act as the digital front-door to screen patient for further triage.
More hospitals will go bankrupt. Since the pandemic, hospitals saw far fewer emergency visits, while also delaying or cancelling elective procedures. As a result, hospitals are losing millions a day, some might not survive the financial hit. While telemedicine usage spiked, it doesn’t provide enough revenue to hospitals compared to in-person care. The pandemic exposed the weak foundations of the U.S. healthcare system.
The massive flywheel of Epic Games. Regardless of what industry you’re in, you need to understand the flywheel of Epic Games. While most know Epic Games for its hit game Fortnite, its core business Unreal Engine runs a flywheel of publishing, online services, game store, and game studio. It’s a long 6-part series read but well worth it for understanding how it’s redefining media and entertainment.
Behind the scenes of Morning Brew’s media machine. How is this small team with limited media experience producing 16 newsletters to 2.5 million people plus 2 podcast episodes in one week? Fascinating to witness how this newsletter machine is automated with its custom built workplace tools to manage content and ads. The softwares seem quite well designed and clearly solves a workflow that MB couldn’t find in existing products. Could it be paving the road for a future of SaaS business model, like Vox Media’s Chorus platform?
The shopping revolution will be driven by social & video. A fascinating tweet storm by Connie Chan predicting that the next Amazon competitor is likely a social or video app rather than a shopping product. Consumers are becoming more discovery driven than search driven. Social products facilitate natural recommendations and distribution to similar people, and video products are great for storytelling (and selling) products.