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Hackernoon logoPassion Economy: How to Organically Grow While Maintaining Paid Groups by@lijin

Passion Economy: How to Organically Grow While Maintaining Paid Groups

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@lijinLi Jin

I am an Investment Partner at Andreessen Horowitz focused on the Consumer sector

In the next few years, we’ll see more large communities moving off major social platforms where they originated + setting up their own independent properties, with built-in direct monetization models.

This is a fascinating example of the Passion Economy at work.

Some notable recent examples:

  • Earlier this year, the 800k+ member subreddit Change My View–which
    promotes discourse around opposing viewpoints–launched its own website with custom features that go beyond Reddit’s capabilities
  • The Woolfer, a FB group for women over 40 with 30K members, moved to a paid app/website. The reason? “This is a volunteer-run organization that has gotten too big, and we can’t sustain it anymore unless we make money” (h/t @juliey4’s great thread https://twitter.com/juliey4/status/1184264248874061824…)

The themes behind these moves to a dedicated property are:

  • Outgrowing existing social platforms and needing additional product features specific to their community
  • Lack of monetization options/viable business model for group creators on existing ad-driven social platforms
  • In addition, various models have de-risked that consumers are willing to pay for curated, high-quality content/community (e.g. Substack, The Wing, etc).

The challenge will be to leverage existing horizontal social platforms for discovery & distribution, while giving a compelling enough value proposition so that power users move to a narrower, premium community.

It’s the 1000 True Fans idea in action.

What are other examples you’ve seen of this?

Originally published as “Paid Groups & The Passion Economy"

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