Live From The Bubble

Happy Monday. On Saturday, I woke up to the sound of emails flooding my inbox. I thought a spam-bot got a hold of my email address. Turns out, one of my previous newsletters was referenced by Morning Brew in their cold email guide linked in the Saturday edition of the Brew.

So to all of my new subscribers, welcome and thank you for joining! Let me catch you up to speed.

For the last week, I’ve been running a giveaway. The prize? An $100 gift card to Bombas Socks.

Here’s how to participate:

Step 1: Refer five people who sign up for the newsletter.

Step 2: Repeat step one. Every five referrals (who sign up), count as one entry.

Once you’ve referred your five (or more!) smartest friends, send me an email, DM, text, etc. with their names/emails. I’ll confirm that all five are subscribed and I’ll enter you into the raffle. The winner will be announced in the August 3rd edition of Crashing Up.

If you’re new here and want to join in on the fun, sign up below:

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🏀The New Post Game

Amidst one of the most divisive periods in world history, it seemed as if the entire world was able to put their differences aside for one thing: The Last Dance. Part of the reason that ESPN’s Michael Jordan documentary “The Last Dance” was so successful was that it gave viewers a behind-the-scenes look at who Michael Jordan is as a person. It’s easy to forget that athletes are more than just athletes, they are real people too. They have feelings, emotions, families, and other interests besides their respective sports. With more platforms than ever to consume media, there is now a ton of opportunity for players to control the narrative and build their personal brand.

Enter, Matisse Thybulle. With only select media members gaining access to the NBA bubble, Philadelphia 76ers rookie Matisse Thybulle decided to take covering the state of the bubble into his own hands. In a series of ten-minute vlogs (video blogs) Thybulle has shared the testing facilities, hotel rooms, meals, practices, how players spend their free time and more. The response to these videos has been exceptional, taking Matisse from a quiet rookie looking to prove his worth on the court to a world-wide, media phenomenon. In a little over a week, he’s amassed 225,000 subscribers on YouTube, averaging over 735K views per video. That’s nothing to sneeze at (while wearing your mask of course).

Matisse isn’t the only player to document their off the court antics. Lakers forward, Javale Mcgee has also been releasing vlogs from inside the bubble and makes an effort to connect with fans through his love of Call of Duty. Mcgee frequently posts videos of himself playing the game on YouTube and streams on Twitch. His first Youtube video dates back to eight years ago.

Within the next three years, we will see a lot of players begin to take a page from Matisse and Javale’s playbook. Here’s why.

For the Players: In sports, nothing is guaranteed. Injuries are unpredictable and we now know that it’s possible for the sports world to go on pause, sometimes without pay. While they do make exorbitant amounts of money and should have some stashed away for a rainy day (or a global pandemic) not all do. 60 percent of NBA players go broke within five years of departing from the league. Not only does building their personal brand help them connect on a deeper level with their fans, but it also serves as an alternative revenue stream. Growing a following on YouTube, Twitch or any another platform opens a wide door of money-making opportunities ranging from ad revenue and brand deals to selling personal merchandise. This is especially important for less noteworthy players who play in markets that don’t receive a lot of media coverage.

Eventually, every athlete’s playing career will come to an end. In retirement, former players will often make the switch to media as announcers, analysts, or talk show hosts. Putting this content out now is a great way to set the foundation for this transition.

For Teams and the League: It’s free marketing. More eyeballs means more money. Building the personal brands of smaller name players will help increase jersey sales, ticket revenue and can even create new fans across the globe. Everyone might not have access to a television that broadcasts the NBA, but most people do have smartphones. By studying the content that its players put out, the NBA gets a chance to see what resonates with their fans and what doesn’t. They can use these insights to make league-wide marketing campaigns more effective.

With nearly 450 players currently in the NBA, only a small fraction are truly focused on building their influence and audience on social media. What Matisse and Javale are doing is proof that if executed correctly, NBA players can gain recognition for a different type of post game.

🤷Sorry, Not Sorry

Almost a year ago today, I published my first book. It examines the connection between childhood bullying and entrepreneurship. I learned a lot about myself throughout the writing process, but one of my biggest realizations was how frequently I used the word “sorry.”

Sorry is one of the most over-used words in the English language. We use it so often that it no longer carries sincerity. Let me know if any of these instances sound familiar:

•Knocking on the door of a person of authority and apologizing for bothering them

•Apologizing to a person who bumps into you on a crowded street.

•Prefacing a disagreement to someone’s argument with, “I’m sorry.”

Now let me ask you this: Are you really sorry for any of those things? If you say sorry for everything, what are you really sorry for?

Holding yourself accountable is an essential part of being a good entrepreneur, professional, friend, and overall human being. It’s important to first own up to your mistakes and then present a detailed game plan of how you are going to work toward fixing them—but only if they are truly mistakes.

There is no reason to over-apologize at school, work, in person or in email, just to apologize. It is unnecessary and shows a lack of confidence and assertiveness.

Instead, say thank you!

By saying “thank you” instead of “sorry,” you demonstrate your confidence and worth. You deserve the same space, time, and respect as everyone else. But until you prove that to yourself, you can’t prove it to others.

✏️How to Write Unique Copy

Authenticity sells. I’ve touched upon this in terms of using employees as influencers. Consumers don’t want to hear from a brand, instead they want to hear from the people behind the brand. Especially, when the owner is a celebrity. Yet some of the largest celebrities in the world still promote and read ads with pre-written, unoriginal scripts. Even when they’re promoting their own product. Their lack of authenticity in their approach to marketing can often raise questions about their contribution to the brand at all. Is this just another poorly made money-grab or is this the brainchild of a hard-working celebrity who deeply cares about giving her customers a high quality product.

Rihanna and her beauty brand Fenty, are a prime example of the latter. Rihanna started Fenty in 2017 and it has since revolutionized the beauty industry. Her value proposition? Providing women with 40 shades of foundation, perfect for any skin color. The idea of equality stands at the forefront of the brand and is prominent throughout nearly all of its marketing campaigns. Unlike most celebrities who start their own brand, she was involved in every step of the process including formulation and packaging.

She’s also the company’s most powerful marketing engine. There’s no other way to put it…Rihanna’s a badass. To hide her beloved authenticity and flare would be a disservice to the brand. Instead, it’s the brand’s secret weapon.

Let’s use this Tweet as an example (found @GoodMarketingHQ).

In only a few words, Rihanna is able to pique the reader’s interest, provide value, and deliver a clear call to action, all without sacrificing her authenticity. Copywriting 101. It’s impossible to say whether or not a third party had a hand in crafting this tweet, but given her dedication to the brand, it’s fair to assume that this wasn’t written by a suit in a boardroom. For all the marketers who want to write captions for their influencers, take notes. Sometimes it’s better to loosen the reigns. Provide the structure and ideas, but not the copy. Let the influencers influence.

Once again, big welcome to all the new subscribers. I’m so happy to have you along for the ride.

Thanks for reading,


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