The Everything Sunday Digest

Why MasterClass isn't really about Mastery — a new productivity app called "mymind" — HEY's product decisions — and everything else we published this week!

Hello and happy Sunday! 

Kicking us off this week with some exciting news: We’re honored to have been given a shoutout in this Digiday article, How Substack has spawned a new class of newsletter entrepreneurs. Check it out for a great explanation of our bundle strategy and the role it’s playing in the future of newsletters.

What we published this week

We published three new articles this week totaling ~5,500 words. We checked out a browser extension called mymind that’s changing the productivity game, took a look at what the email service HEY actually gets right (and what it doesn’t), and learned some lessons in running an online-education business from MasterClass. We also posted an open thread asking for your input on the content you want to see more of in the Everything bundle — check it out below and let us know!

THREAD: How should we grow the bundle?

This week we started a thread for everyone to leave their thoughts on what they’d love to see us include in the bundle. The response so far has been delightful! We’ve had over 60 responses, and we love hearing about what you think.

How to manage your subscription

You can subscribe and unsubscribe from individual newsletters inside of the bundle without affecting your overall subscription to what we write. If you want to turn on or off email notifications for a specific newsletter, you can manage your settings here


Napkin Math
Get smarter about investing

Why MasterClass Isn’t Really About Mastery

We live in an age where you can take online lessons on almost any subject from some of the most highly educated teachers in the world. But MasterClass, an online education portal offering tutorials from celebrity experts, knows that the real money isn’t always in what you know, but rather who knows you. Adam Keesling breaks down the biggest takeaways from MasterClass’ success. 

How the world’s smartest people organize their work

The Opportunity in Productivity

With all the apps available to help us organize our lives, why hasn’t there been something similar for notes? Enter mymind, a browser extension that Dan Shipper calls “Pinterest for productivity nerds.” It’s in its early stages still, but there are three key features that make it an incredibly compelling launch. Read on as Dan takes you on the mymind tour.

Dive deeper — Here’s one of our favorites from the Superorganizers archives: “Review:” is a todo-list app designed to both keep you on task and encourage you while you work. Sounds perfect on paper, but like many things, it’s not quite as perfect in practice. Check out Dan’s thoughtful, constructive review here.

Get smarter about strategy

Product Case Study: HEY

Last week, Nathan Baschez wrote a piece exploring the potential draws and drawbacks of Basecamp’s new email service, HEY. This week, he’s following up with his thoughts after actually using it, including his qualms with some of HEY’s design features and an inbox purgatory called The Screener.

The modern frontier of productivity

Tiago’s Mid-Year Review 2020

Given the thoroughly wild nature of 2020 so far, Tiago Forte decided to do a more comprehensive mid-year review this year. He follows up on the goals he shared publicly, revisits the 7-year mindmap he started in 2018, and considers new questions that this year has raised for him.

Dive deeper — Here’s one of our favorites from the Praxis archives: “Tiago’s Comprehensive Guide to Creating a Profitable Online Course.” Here you’ll learn how to create a profitable, self-sustaining course, backed by years of Tiago’s own success in doing so. This comprehensive guide introduces his 4-P model (Planning, Preparation, Production, and Promotion), and includes examples from his own courses.

Talk Therapy
What happens when two friends start a business?

#8 - The model was actually right!

Four months ago, when we only had a couple hundred paying subscribers, Adam Keesling made a financial model that predicted we’d have 1,462 customers by the end of June. The actual number? 1,635. Adam joins Dan and Nathan to discuss the thinking that went into the model, and takes a well-deserved victory lap, since this kind of thing literally never happens.

#9 - Tech vs Media hits a new low

Why is there so much animosity between the tech industry and journalists? Dan and Nathan try to sort through the muck.


💪 I quit my job at the start of the pandemic to launch a company. Here’s what I’ve learned in the first 90 days.

On March 20, 2020, Polina Marinova launched her media company The Profile. Starting your own business is scary enough in itself, but starting a business with a pandemic on the rise takes an enormous amount of bravery and a hell of a lot of entrepreneurship. Keep reading for the 10 biggest lessons she’s learned 90 days in, as well as what’s made the whole experience worth it.

👋 That’s it for this week! 

Thanks, and see you next Sunday :)

This issue was written by Tori Smith and edited by Nathan Baschez.

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