Unf*cked with Ryan J. Williams

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Brian Koppelman joined Stories From the Influencer Economy as this week's guest. I originally recorded this episode at Brian's office in New York City last fall.  We talked in detail about creativity, podcasting, and finding that curiousity for what gets you motivated and inspired.


Brian is the co-writer of films such as Rounders and Ocean's Thirteen, as well as the co-director of the Emmy Award winning "30 for 30," film on Jimmy Connors This is What They Want. 


Brian is an avid podcast listener and"loves the intimacy of the conversations ." He talks about how Marc Maron's WTF inspired him to get into podcasting. Brian also details how he connected Bill Simmons and Dave Jacoby of Grantland, and how The Moment podcast came to be.  


He was invited on the show to talk about his creative process around filmmaking, and his embracing of social media in the digital age.  As a creator, he has launched many big ideas online...


Brian also created the extremely popular "Six Second Screenwriting Tips" on Vine.  The Vine series came out of questions received from Twitter.  He created one Vine every day (for 300 days), and one Vine has over 20 million loops.  The videos were focused on the idea of “giving yourself permission to create.” 


He recently completed a TV series with Paul Giamatti for Showtime called Billions.  Billions, the setting is the financial industry in New York.  He collaborated with his long time writing/directing partner David Levien and Andrew Ross Sorkin. 



“I’ve never calculated one part of my work. I’ve always just led with what fascinates me.  That’s why having the conversations is easy too. That’s what led to every movie… All this came from only being obsessed with chasing down my passions and being unrelenting with the desire to be able to tell my children that I fought to live the creative life I wanted to live and that they could do the same.” 

   “I want all the things that I say to be things that I believe and have some value.”

   “I actually don’t think that there is such a thing as remarkable people; people are the result of the actions that they take and then how they process the feedback from those actions.”   

   "A blocked artist is probably a bad wife or husband.”   



   Brian on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/briankoppelman

   Brian on Vine:  https://vine.co/briankoppelman

   Brian's website:  http://briankoppelman.com


   At the end of the show, he suggests that you watch his film Solitary Man: http://www.solitarymanmovie.com

Direct download: Brian_Koppelman_Moment.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:35pm PST

Sign-up for exclusive content and announcements for The Influencer Economy Book due out December 2015:  http://www.influencereconomy.com/book/

We are really excited to share this interview with Nir Eyal that I recorded a few months back. Nir was in Los Angeles for a start-up speaking engagement, where he explained the Hooked Model to 100 + entrepreneurs in Santa Monica. I was lucky enough to chat with him right before he went on stage.

His Hooked Model has changed the game for product creation and product management. We talk at length about the 4 principles of the Hooked Model and how it applies to everyone building products.

The average person checks their cell phone over 100 times per day. And Nir explains why we are all so obsessed with Facebook, WhatsApp and Pinterest. His expertise is in consumer psychology and applying principles from writer's like B.F. Skinner to modern technology. 

Nir also self-pubished his book, blogged for years and eventually launched Hooked as a NY Times best-seller. He shares what it's like seeing your book at an airport bookstore.


Nir's website and his Twitter:  http://www.nirandfar.com/ https://twitter.com/nireyal


  • How Nir started writing his blog to answer his own questions about how products create habits
  • How hearing Mark Zuckerberg speak when Nir was in Stanford business school inspired his curiosity around the hooked model
  • How Facebook & WhatsApp nailed the Hooked model
  • The difference between vitamins (nice to have) and pain killers (must have) when building products
  • A guide to the 4-Step Hooked process: 1) Trigger 2) Action 3) Reward 4) Investment
  • How podcasts apps. like Stitcher form habits for their listeners
  • The GEM model (Growth, engagement, monetization)
  • How Nir’s career transitioned from entrepreneur into story-teller
  • How Nir reach the NY Times best-seller list with the help of his community of blog readers


Direct download: Nir_Eyal_Hooked.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:00am PST

As mentioned on the podcast intro. Please vote! For our SXSW Panel on podcasting.  My friends Jemele Hill and Tom Merritt and I are trying to host a panel "Podcasts Grow-Up:  Community and Monetization.  They are both great people and former guests of The Influencer Economy.  If we get enough votes, then we'll be at SXSW next year.


For this week's episode, I spoke to Alan Sepinwall the writer of the wildly popular online TV recap column, What's Alan Watching?" and the best-selling book "The Revolution Was Televised.  On this week's show, Alan details how he originated his career as a TV writer, how he wound-up writing for Hitfix.com, and the keys to his successful self-published book.

Funny when I listen to this episde, I realize how much better I have improved at interviews. But what strikes me the most proud is that I stayed focus with Alan and got the conversation that I hoped for. He was a fun and insightful guest and we had a lot of ground to cover in 1/2 an hour. Hope you enjoy this!

Listen to our archives:  http://www.influencereconomy.com  Follow Ryan on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ryanjwill

Alan's history as a TV writer dates back to the 1990's. He's a pioneer in the TV journalism industry, specifically in defining and shaping the category of online TV Show recaps.  He is a great example of a successful creator in The Influencer Economy, as he self-published his book, selling it directly to his community.  He has built an incredibly loyal following from writing online, and was able to deliver a book that his community wanted to read.  He details his unique model of self-publishing which we can all learn from. 

Alan's column:  http://www.hitfix.com/whats-alan-watching

Alan on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/sepinwall

Alan's original What's Alan Watching blog:  http://sepinwall.blogspot.com

From this episode you'll learn:

  • How Alan launched his writing career writing online in the 1990's about NYPD Blue
  • The history of Alan's "What's Alan Watching?" TV Recap column
  • The background of how Alan went from working for the NJ Times Ledger to writing for the entertainment website Hitfix.com
  • The secrets of how Alan self-published his book and got the attention of traditional publishers
  • The origins of Alan appearing on Bill Simmons' BS Report



Direct download: Alan_Sepinwall_Influencer.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:32pm PST

Harrison Barnes grew-up in Iowa, played college basketball for the North Carolina Tar Heels, and is now an NBA player for the Golden State Warriors. This past June he won an NBA Title, when the Warriors defeated the Cavaliers.

He is a world champion.

I spoke to Harrison before he won the title, during the Warriors regular season. We had a candid converation about sports, fans, media, college, SnapChat, United Airlines customer service, and much more. 

There's a lot of great stuff in here, for fans and listeners alike who want to hear a modern day athlete's persepctive about the media landscape in 2015.  We originally aired this episde last fall.

Sign-up to buy The Influencer Economy book:  http://www.influencereconomy.com/book/

Harrison Barnes on Twitter:  https://twitter.com/hbarnes

Harrison on Instagram:  https://instagram.com/hbarnes/

Direct download: Harrison_Barnes_Warriors_Fin.mp3
Category:careers -- posted at: 1:00pm PST