Help others make money

Note to future self..

Today I came across this really insightful tweet that represents a new addition to my current framework for thinking about good startup ideas:

If I look back at the startups that I admire the most (Airbnb, Uber, Stripe, Substack, Patreon, etc.) they all follow this model. This lens strikes the right balance between vague and specific, which makes it useful.

Why is it insightful?

This tweet seems so obvious but the reason why it’s insightful is that if you help other people make money they will promote your product for you. Think about it. A merchant really wants to put a stripe payment form on their website because it makes them money. A creator really wants people to know about their Patreon because it makes them money. Newsletter creators will link to their Substack newsletter because they want to get their word out and some want to make money doing this.

How the model works

If you can get people to promote your product for you, then you can take a cut out of that and people will be fine because you will help them make money that they weren’t making otherwise. If done right, it can be one of the best ways to align incentives between the startup and its users.


We’re currently thinking about ways in which we can help other people make money. We don’t want to force it into the product but we’re definitely excited to give it a try because we’ve seen how powerful it can be.

I will report back with any updates. That’s it for now.

Now back to work..