[S1,E20] Over 100K daily subscribers under a year! How Sam Parr, CEO of The Hustle, found a voice to millennials

Sam Parr is the CEO of The Hustle – a daily newsletter that delivers the latest and trending topics to young millennials. Originally a sub-product of Sam Parr’s Hustle Con, an annual business conference, The Hustle has rapidly become one of the fastest growing newsletters in USA. They grew from 0 to 100K daily subscribers in 10 months!

Join TheHustle newsletter here. And this is an example of what you get after you subscribe to TheHustle.co.

Title — “Look what you did, you little jerk…”




But things are not always so bright and shiny:

“One month it’ll be shitty. I’ll be working six days a week and nothing is working. You’re like: ‘This is horrible. I hate this. I want to quit.’ (…) It feels like it’s not working more often than it feels like it’s working.”

In the interview we discuss practical tactics that Sam uses regarding growth, virality, early acquistion, monetization, funding, cold emailing, meeting own expectations and more!

What is the recipe for The Hustle’s growth? What type of articles are shared the most? What is the current monthly reach of TheHustle.co? How did Sam and his co-founder know that the conversational tone is the right to catch a large audience? What did Sam learn from his roommate matching company? Why did he hate to work there after it got acquired? How does he select the writers and chooses the topics for the platform? How is he monetizing it?

Watch the interview and learn how to hustle!

A lovely shout out to our partners: StyleBee for fabulous beauty styling (use a special promo code VALLEYTALKS for $25 OFF of your first styling by StyleBee!) and UnStock — mobile first marketplace for authentic video.

Check out some highlights from the interview:

  • From the very beginning Sam and his co-founder felt like the best approach is to go agains the tide:

    “One of our philosophies is that if everyone is going this way, then we should go this way. We noticed that a lot of the websites that we would read – like The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg – are super dry. They don’t converse like you and I converse.”

  • Sam credits a lot of success of his HustleCon to the trial and error approach:

    “For the first two weeks, every time a sale came in, I was like ‘Holly shit! It’s working.’”

  • Sam strongly believes in persistence and hard work when it comes to getting speakers, sponsors, and investors for Hustle Con:

    “Some speakers who I emailed for the first time never responded to me or said no, so the second time I would continue emailing them; for example a speaker from this year (Otis Chandler from Good Reads), I’ve been emailing for two years.”

  • By creating a lot of content, Sam and his team learned what types of emotions are likely to go viral:

    “You just understand what emotions trigger sharing. We’ve got data and insights, so we write trying to get that type of emotions.”

  • Sam has really ambitious goals for The Hustle:

    “There is 80M millennials in America. 40M of them are college educated. I want to have 40M come to the website everyday.”

  • Sam really stresses their dedication to doing their way:

    “I like doing whatever I want and don’t like to be told what to do. If I can prove that our pirate ship can sail on its own, then any money we have is a little bit of wind in our sails, as opposed to someone telling us what to do.”

  • Reaching a goal is fun, but what’s mostly exciting is the path to do it. Because afterwards…

    “What I’ve learned was even when you hit the goals that you want to hit, it’s only satisfying for a minute.”

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