How to Get Paid to Read Your Email

Jeremy Epstein Business

About 20 years ago, Seth Godin wrote “Permission Marketing.”

The premise was that marketers would seek to earn the trust and the permission of their audience to build a relationship of anticipated communications.

Yeah, that didn’t quite happen.

Marketers (for the most part) didn’t ask for permission. They have abused it.

And now we have spam in our inbox and plenty of other places.

But, today, I saw the future of marketing.

A future where permission and crypto-currencies begin to come together.

The company is called 21.

Through it, you create a public facing site through which anyone can access you.

Here’s mine.

But here’s the thing.

If someone you don’t know wants to connect with you, they must PAY you at a price you set. (You only get paid when you respond though, which protects the sender)

Your time has value.

Now, it can’t get abused by everyone or anyone who has your public email address.

Each sender gets to decide, “is it worth it for me to spend $5 (or whatever) to reach this person?”

If yes, then you know they are serious. That’s a very effective barrier.

And payments are made in Bitcoin to your wallet. (You can also donate the money to a charity).

But, wait, as they say, “there’s more!”

You can also earn money for answering questions, surveys, etc.

I’m already up to $1.85. Yay.

It’s not difficult to see a scenario where a company that wants to do market research would do it via 21 because they know that everyone on the platform is who they say they are (if you connect to a LinkedIn profile and Bitcoin address, that’s a good gauge of verification. Plus, I could see this integrated with a Keybase or other identity provider, like uPort.)

As Naval pointed out in his entry in Blockchains in the Mainstream, “No Internet, No Cryptocurrency,

Eventually, there will be no functioning Internet or Internet of Things at the protocol layer without deep cryptocurrency integration.

Go over to their developer section and you can essentially purchase mini-programs for Bitcoin.

Because the transactional costs of Bitcoin are so much lower than banks and credit cards, a company can now provide services with lower margins (they don’t have to pay the credit card providers or merchant services)

This may be a super simple example, but it’s a hallmark of things to come.

Not only is it a very practical on-ramp to the Bitcoin ec0nomy for a LOT of people, it’s a great example of connecting an existing pain to a solution that can be delivered most effectively via crypto-currency

We often talk about the question of “what will be the Tipping Point?” and “when will the dam break?”

This one makes me wonder if we might be witnessing it.