Hi, thank you for opening.

Nikki's here. It's a new week but still, I hope you are reading this under a coconut tree on the beach somewhere. It's summer, it's only right to live a little.

If I'm being honest, I haven't been able to write much lately. As I self-investigate, turns out it's not the lack of ideas, I have 1000 +2 things to write about.  It's that my tone and voice tend to change drastically depends on the topic and my mood in that moment.

The realization is a huge blow, because I have always been that person who brings up tone and voice whenever she can. I can't stress enough how important it is to be consistent with how you communicate.

But who am I if not an optimist? Might as well think of all those different tones and voices as different sides of who I am. After all, we all have different sides to ourselves.

That is to say, if you read an article here that sounds like it was written by a high school boy going through puberty, that's me. If you read another article that sounds like a script straight out of The Notebook, that's still me. It's all me.

Now, let's just get to it.

This email is estimated to take 5 mins of your time.


Growth resources for bootstrappers

I spent some time last week collecting every useful resource I and my team at Dwarves Foundation have used for boosting growth. Hopefully, you will find something helpful for your own project.

And do let me know if you know of anything else that might help other fellows.

Sharing is caring :)


Tackling changes in iOS 15

It started with iOS 14, and now it keeps going with iOS 15. Apple is making effort in turning privacy into one of its core brand identifiers and competitive differentiators.

That is great news, obvs, especially when we are all sensitive about our privacy and safety on the internet. But a few of us are already feeling the burn with these updates.

I'm winking at makers, builders, and marketers in particular.

These updates change the ways we work around email. Most of the tracking tricks we depend on up until now have become useless.

We're gonna have to take users out of their mail client. Email marketing (even for those running newsletters) will be all about interaction.

Here's how (4 min read)


Selling to the next generation

Etsy put down a big payment on Depop. The $1.6B acquisition is yet the biggest acquisition for Etsy so far.

This is not new news or anything out of the ordinary, but we are going to talk about it because the Etsy <> Depop deal signals an appetite for companies serving Generation Z. I have no doubt we will get to see more of these acquisitions in the near future.

While Generation Z's tendency to cancel skinny jeans still puts a pout on my face, its buying power is something we can't kid with.

In 2020, Gen Z hold account to 40% of all customers, which translate to $44B. But that's not all of it, Gen Z also have influence on their Millenial parents' spending, which translate to sum of $600B.

So we're talking about roughly $644B of buying power, making Gen Z emerge as one of the most powerful and important consumer forces today.

You might want to get your tickets to sit at their table, asap.

Here's how (6 min read)


SGFI: The new squad against Amazon monopoly

E-commerce platform Shopify announced its one-click checkout service known as Shop Pay will become available to any U.S. merchant that sells on Facebook or Google.

  • The first Shopify product offered to non-Shopify merchants.
  • How Shop Pay works: reduce the number of input fields during the checkout process. This means 70% faster checkout than a typical checkout offers, with a 1.72x higher conversion rate.
  • SGFI Squad = Shopify + Google + Facebook + Instagram.
  • The new formation allows 1.7 million merchants the ability to reach and sell to customers.
  • Clearly a threat to not just other payment services, but also to Amazon's road to e-commerce centralization.
  • What we love: Shop Pay is dedicated to offsetting the carbon emissions caused by delivery. This means planting and protecting new trees.

Opportunities: Customers can buy and pay with just one code needed to authorize the payment, and you don't even have to be on Shopify to do this.


Live in an architect masterpiece for $1

While Airbnb will need to pay a fine of $9.6M for its illegal listings in Paris, we are not going to talk much about it, as you can read it in full here. Instead, I'm sharing about one of Airbnb's marketing events happening soon.

If you are currently in (or can fly to) Barcelona, Spain, you are fond of art and architecture, you have heard about Gaudí, then this will delight you.

Casa Vicens - an Art Nouveau style signature, a UNESCO landmark and Gaudi's first-ever commissioned home - is open for reservation at $1.

  • It's an "experience as Gaudi designed it", says Casa Vicens's general manager.
  • Exclusive tour hosted by Emili Masferrer i Fons, the general manager who took part in restoring and transforming Casa Vicen into the museum it is today.
  • Dine-in a Michelin-star meal.
  • Spend the night in the Vicens family's primary bedroom.
  • Mediterranean breakfast the next morning in the lush, private garden.

The Airbnb listing will be open on July 12th at 9:00 PM ICT. The offer is first come first serve, so odd is high. But who knows. I personally wouldn't pass this offer up if I were in Barcelona myself.

A few other things I'm digesting

Design for buying @ Sarah Guo

  • Product-led growth is awesome, but we can't rely on it all alone.
  • Perceiving the limits of organic end-user self-service as an initial lead generation and community goodwill strategy, rather than a silver bullet.
  • Going beyond serving individuals, to serving collaborators, teams, their leaders, and companies.

The AI Revolution: The Road to Superintelligence @ Tim Urban

  • Warning: it's a long, intense 2-part read, but Tim never disappoints.
  • There is not a way to summarize this one, you will have to read it for yourself.

How to work hard @ Paul Graham

  • Great work = natural ability + practice + effort.
  • What we can't control: natural ability. What we can control: practice & effort.
  • Most people have to learn what work is before they can love it. But once we love it, we are capable of working without someone telling us to.

Vsauce @ Michael Stevens

  • Stevens is a fascinating storyteller. He takes us from one thing to another in seconds and the transition is so smooth it doesn’t feel a bit awkward.
  • He teaches about the last things we think we would ever seek to learn. Like why the sky is blue, or how to talk to aliens, or when we will run out of names.
  • He teaches. But before we even realize we're learning (and start refusing because that’s how humans are, we loathe “learning”), it’s already over.

The Steal Club @ Alex Llull

  • Steal-able breakdowns of how successful creators use social media.
  • I personally learn a lot from Alex on to navigate the Twitter game. Enough said.

I always love hearing from you, so please don't shy away from reply to this email or DM me on Twitter. Whether you have feedback on how I can improve Obvs or just want to say hello, I'm here :)

That's it for now.

See you again soon,


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