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The Best Newsletter Yet

Vol. 23

Happy Halfway Besties,

We’re officially a week(ish) into the 2nd half of 2024. When it started, we made resolutions…that 80% of us quit by the end of January. That’s why we invented…The Mid-Year’s Resolution   Same concept as 6 months ago, but 2x as easy (because it’s half as long). And it’s wayyy less pressure (because no one knows about it).

We’ll tell ya ours at the end of this newsletter. Scroll.

🚨 BUT FIRST — We’re recording the TBOY Hotline next week — If you want to get your question on the show, reply to this email with your best. 🚨

Was this newsletter forwarded to you? Subscribe here to get our weekly edition.

 

ICYMI

 👨 How rare exactly is aman in finance, blue eyes, trust fund, and 6’5”? We crunched the numbers…

  • Here’s the data: 5% of US men work in finance (Acc. to the Labor Department). 27% of Americans have blue eyes (Acc. to the Academy of Ophthalmology). 2% of America has a trust fund (Acc. to the Wall Street Journal). 0.15% of America is 6’5” (Acc. to Nat’l Center for Health).

  • The answer = 5% x 27% x 2% x 0.15% of 166M men = 672 men in finance, with blue eyes, trust fund, and are 6’5”.

  • Buuuut how many are single? 68% of men are already married (Acc. to US census). So only 215 of those men are available…and likely somewhere on Nantucket right now.

👩‍🦳 But what about awoman in finance, blue, trust fund, 6’5”? We found that out too…

  • Here’s the data: 4% of US women work in finance. 27% have blue eyes. 2% of Americans have a trust fund. Only 0.03% of women in America are 6’5”.

  • The answer: 4% x 27% x 2% x .03% of 169M women in America = 12 women in finance, fit the criteria.

  • How many are single? 68% of them are married…so only 4 of those women are single.

MACRO

Photo cred: SF Gate

Billboards are back, baby: they’re the fastest-growing out-of-home advertising. OOH ad revenue dipped during Pandemic (because you were in your home). But since then they have recovered to an all-time high in the last year. 🪧 

  • Ironically, some of the biggest physical billboard demand is in the mecca of digital tech: Silicon Valley. From San Francisco to San Jose on Highway 101, brands from Brex to Google are buying up billboards with ads that only make sense to techies

  • Surprise Reason? Recruiting. The coding jokes aren’t supposed to reach customers, they’re meant to reach applicants. If it makes ya chuckle, you’ll submit a resume (especially if you’re stuck in 20 minutes of 101 traffic).

MARKETS

The 1st Half of 2024 was a vibe: The S&P 500 grew 14.5%. Context? That’s the best first-half performance in an election year in half-a-century.

  • But quick context… It’s almost entirely from growth of the 6 A.I. Mafia companies (mentioned in Vol. 22) 🤖 Amazon, Apple, Google, Meta, Microsoft, & Nvidia.

  • Our Hero Stat: Nvidia alone accounts for ⅓ of the total market’s growth. Meanwhile, Bitcoin is up 40%, chocolate prices rose 85%, and gold hit an all-time high. And of course, we can’t forget Abercrombie — it’s nearly 2x’d this yearpop the collar.

STOCKS

This week, Nike’s stock suffered its biggest loss since 2001 (aka “Pre-LeBron”), while Adidas’ stock gained — there are 3 reasons why the Sneaker Industry is getting rearranged like your shoe drawer:

  • 1st Strategic: Nike called the Wrong Play on E-commerce — It pulled out of 3rd party stores to focus on selling in Nike stores and on nike.com. So Adidas slipped in and filled Nike’s spot at Foot Locker, Dick’s, other sports stores.

  • 2nd Aesthetic: Nike made a Crime of Fashion with Nike’s Air Force 1s — They’re getting replaced by the more casual Adidas Sambas by fashionistas like Harry Styles.

  • 3rd Marketing: Nike Lost the Love of the Leaders — Remember Nike’s see-thru MLB jersey debacle? Top athletes weren’t into “transparency.”

  • But 1 thing they both did wrong: Nike & Adidas both lost the local running clubs — and those clubs influence shoe buying trends. Reps from Hoka, On, Brooks, Asics, & other fast-growing rivals visit running clubs 4x/year while Nike & Adidas reps only go 1x/year… and that’s why upstart sneaker brands are gaining on Nike & Adidas. 👟 Our Takeaway? If you’re not in their ears, you’re not in their minds.

DATA

The most-played sport in America? 🌽 According to a recent Ipsos survey, it’s Cornole. 20% of Americans played cornhole last year, beating bowling 19%, swimming 18%, and golf 9%.

  • Going Pro: It’s so popular, the sport launched The American Cornhole League (The ACL). And this ain’t no ESPN The Ocho — The ACL snagged a streaming deal on ESPN. Not too shabby.

  • What’s more: A part-time UPS driver, Jeremiah Lewis is also a Part-Pro Cornholer, with the league’s 1st sponsorship deal (and our favorite player).

But here’s what we noticed… Upstart leagues disrupting sports, from Pro Cornhole to Pro Lacrosse to Pro Pickleball, are borrowing a business model from the circus: Touring. Because the threshold for maintaining a local team is high, but the scarcity of a tour builds national intrigue. 🤡

“Mom, the Cornholers are comin’ to town…” 

FACTS

The Caesar Salad’s 100th B’day: The OG salad turned 100 on this 4th of July.

  • The surprise history: During the 1920s, prohibition banned liquor in the US. So Americans went south of the border to Mexico for fun. 1 Italian immigrant, Césare Cardini, opened a cafe in Tijuana. And on July 4th, 1924 he served his mom’s salad recipe.*

  • The Takeaway: The Caesar Salad was invented by an Italian immigrant, in a Mexican restaurant, for Californian tourists (and then spelled confusingly to make us think it was Roman). What’s more American than that?

*hold the sardines, please 🐟️ 

THE BEST TAKEAWAY YET

Photo credit: Joy Baking Co.

1 ice cream cone brand makes 2/3 of cones served in America: Immigrant-founded Joy Cones.

  • 🍦 Their secret strategy? Familiarity can beat Creativity (Ice cream edition). Because, as the ice cream cone industry shows, boring is better.

  • 🍦 Ice cream brands led the new crazy flavor trend (Strawberry Honey Balsamic w/ Black Pepper??). But After 100 years, Joy Cones still only makes 3 types of cones: cake, sugar, and waffle (and now gluten-free ;)) There’s very little innovation in their ice cream cone biz. The reason? Joy knows that the cone plays a supporting role to ice cream.

  • 🍦 Because consumers want a familiar cone so it doesn’t overpower the ice cream. And given the complexity of creating hundreds of cones/day, businesses want a familiar & reliable supply of cones they can depend on. 👏 👏 for familiarity. Boring is beautiful.

WHAT ELSE?

Richer than Bill Gates: Steve Balmer started at Microsoft as Bill Gates’ personal assistant with zero equity in the company — Eventually he became CEO (2000-2014) and as of last week, he’s now richer than his former boss: Worth $158B, owning 4% of $MSFT.

More Steve’s money/career lesson for all of us on Monday’s ep…👀

OUR MID-YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

Nick’s: Pilates. Already doing yoga, spin, and running — it’s time to hit a Reformer.

Jack’s: Only eat food if it satisfies one of the three Ps: Play (does it fuel me?), Pleasure (is it delicious?), and Pretty (is it begging to be bit into).

🎙️🎙️ If ya missed an episode this week, we gotcha…

And one more thing. Let us know your Mid-Year’s Resolution. And remember, the best part about it: no one cares if you quit, cause we literally made this up.

Celebrate the wins, Yetis :) 🙌 🙌 

—Nick & Jack

P.S. If you want to learn about NASA’s new streaming service or the Post Office’s biz model, you’re gonna love our special July 4th ep.

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