Tuesday, May 9, 2017

John Mauldin is now sucking Bob Lefsetz's cock for business

It's not posted on Lefsetz Letter yet, but here's Casey confidante John Mauldin teaching us all what the smell of desperation smells like:

Subject: Thoughts on 700 new subscribers and Mauldin - from John Mauldin


I've been meaning to dictate/write this letter to you for some time. I've been reading your pieces for at least a few years, and while we are of the same age (more or less as I am almost 68), radically different growing up experiences. I have to apologize to you that you only got 700 new subscribers. I should've put a link in and it would have been much higher. Next time I will.

Will the new readers stick? Hard to say… I am not sure that your tribe and my tribe are all that different,

AHAHAHAHA no, John, your tribe is very different. They may be attitudinal coke-snorting washed-up 70s rockers, but they also follow Trump tweets, vote Tea Party, and accuse politicians of being in cahoots with an international conspiracy masterminded by the Rothschilds.

That's your tribe, John. You picked them, remember?

but then again I'm not sure who your tribe is.

Hopefully people who don't fall for permadoomer goldbug nonsense.

And that's where your writing speaks to me.

Oh god John. You're in way over your head here. Bob Lefsetz was a music industry lawyer. He's had his cock sucked by the best. You really think you can compete? You don't even know what to do with your tongue.

You talk about musicians finding listeners and giving them what they want. We think about expanding our investment information junkie tribe and making them feel included, feeding their information needs. We actually hired a person this year whose entire job description is to make new readers, who sign up for my free letter, feel appreciated and wanted. Hopefully they will buy something. Eventually. Like a musician, I appeal to a certain audience/tribe. It's an interesting business model and not unlike the music business.

Seriously? You're letting people behind the curtain here. So when you publish your permadoomer nonsense about the "coming crisis" and "end of the debt supercycle", you're simply giving people what they want?

Is that really all you are, John?

If we should ever find ourselves in the same ZIP Code, I think you might be fascinated to sit down and compare the experiences that I go through in Internet marketing investments and newsletters and the music business.

Oh yeah, he would be fascinated to read your articles from 5 years ago, where you were calling for hyperinflation, utter destruction, teh ebil sociamalist Obama's taxes on non-Sharia marriage, and other such Tea Partyist chickenshit.

I make my marketing team read your letter religiously.

Again with the amateur sex work, John.

It's lines like this from today's letter that inspire me: We don't need much, but we do need great.

This is just desperate now. Has Vladimir Putin got your wife and kids at gunpoint? Is your letter just an overly amateurish recruitment drive for the international Russian disinfo army? You trying to get Lefsetz onside with the Russky program?

Every week when I sit down as I have for soon to be 18 years, I look at a blank screen and say, "dear gods, don't let the magic stop now." I started with a few thousand names back in 2000 and the letter just took off. I did a few things right, got lucky on more things.

And now let me guess, you're finding your readership is disappearing because, with the Evil Kenyan Muslim Usurper replaced by Trump America Great Again, the right wing fools are no longer interested in your perennial short-S&P-buy-gold strategy, right?

You can no longer spin the narrative that the US will default on its debt, now that you have a president who is going to run up the debt and a Republican party in charge of that debt. US debt is awesome now because there's no negro in the White House! How can we possibly whine about the US debt? There won't even be any debt after 8 years of Trump! Because magic!

And you can no longer spin the narrative that the S&P is horribly overvalued, now that the Republicans are rushing into the market after 8 years of sitting on the sidelines as the S&P tripled, because now that Trump's in charge the American economy will grow at 3-4% per year!

And that's why you're suddenly cuddling up to Bob Lefsetz, right? Now that your senile Republican fear crowd is just buying SPY, your readership is dwindling, so now you realize you need a new group of clowns, and who better to sell snake oil to than the entertainment industry, right? And Bob's got the readership, and you have no clue why they read Bob, but you think you can get some of that magic for yourself now, right?

But mostly, your letter was the reason you got 700 new readers. People far outside the music business intuitively understand that attention is everything. And you seemingly effortlessly just let the words of wisdom roll off your fingers on the screen

Bob can do that, not because he's trying to hoodwink people, but because (like me, not you) he sees bullshit a mile away and can't stop himself from calling that bullshit out. Whereas you are the bullshit, John. Your newsletter is the throwaway Mariah Carey singles of the 90s.

Except at least Mariah was sexxay as all sin. You don't even have that going for you.

And also, Bob believes in truth in art. Whereas you believe in selling apocalyptic fantasy novels, John.

People love Lefsetz for the same reason they love Don Cherry: he might go way off sometimes, but we know he's always been the guy who'll drop the gloves and fight for his teammates at a moment's notice.

People love Lefsetz for the same reason my 6 readers still read me. 

And then you find yourself putting in a six-figure budget just for the ability to be able to send out millions of email addresses a week without being flagged as spam. Wasn't even in the budget line 4 years ago. Now we are spending mid-six figures just growing our list. Five years ago we grew organically. Then Boom, the world changed. One of my main competitors is down 80% on their deliverability and income. And these guys are pros, having been around 30 years. Early Internet pioneers and then everything just changed. And then changed again. My executive team fully expects to have to reinvent the entire business delivery model every 3 to 4 years now.

Yeah, it does sound like you're struggling, John. As I said above, maybe it's because you were selling a bullshit anti-Obama narrative as your investment thesis, and now that whole strategy has become obsolete because the people you were selling to are now in charge, and don't need you anymore.

Kinda like Alex Jones. Maybe you should retire like him.

I know I've only got 25,000 followers on Twitter. I find Twitter to be mostly noise as far as revenue production. But you're right, I will get somebody on my team starting to focus on getting more twitter followers. There's no reason I shouldn't have a hundred thousand with some effort.

Ask your buddy Vladimir. He can get you 100,000 Twitter followers instantly.

It's probably good for the branding and all, but still not sure how you make money out of it. We keep trying to figure out how to monetize Facebook. We know we have to do it to stay relevant but damn it's not easy. It's like being on CNBC or FOXBusiness or Bloomberg. Its validation but as far as I can tell it does almost nothing for increasing my readership. Honestly? I get more viewers from putting a link in my letter to the segment I was on than they probably have watching it to begin with. Business news aggregators? They are changing even faster.

And in all this gentle caressing and romantic whispering, John, you said absolutely nothing about the quality of your content.

Because you don't have quality content. You believe in selling blather to suckers.

You're the Gene Simmons of the investment newsletter world.

Bob can see this, I hope.

My cell phone is ___-___-____ and you are welcome to call. I am writing a book on how the world will change over the next 20 years I would love to pick your brain.

AHAHAHAHAHAAHAA how are you going to slant it politically, John? Who's going to be the Democrat demon who drives the world into disaster? You need a bad guy for your sci-fi novel, you know.

I really really really hope Bob doesn't fall for this.

Addendum: for my opinion of John Mauldin, you can start here, here, here, and here. #1 is the best one, with simply a cryptic Ritholtz comment that "you'll see I don't publish much from him anymore nowadays."

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