Following up on our post of observations, we thought it would be good to figure out where the next big industries are. Some of the clear ones have been related to technology: blockchain, AI, Robotics, video games etc. However, if we take it a step further, we can take advantage of industries that will boom *due* to the impact of automation/decentralization. In simple terms, people will gain more autonomy, they will either be rich or poor and the same mistakes that were easy to recover from in the past won’t be easy snap backs anymore.
Zero Talent Industries: Assuming someone has zero talent, it likely makes sense to enter the healthcare field at this point. Before we would have recommended going into housing or something similar where one could flip homes (repair them) for large amounts of money. When we originally suggested this, we didn’t realize that many people won’t be able to run the numbers correctly. House flipping “gone wrong” is just as bad as levering up into the wrong investment. So. With this new assumption in mind, we’d go straight into health related services.
Home health type services will allow people to get paid with limited risk to automation/robotics. You’re not going to send a robot to take care of an elderly woman (checking her blood pressure, taking her places etc.). You’re going to send a human being with good social skills which can be learned over time. Also, by working in healthcare related industries, we’d bet that the individual would be less depressed. Seeing how hard life can be if your health is taken away and how grateful people are to be alive is going to prevent your average person from slipping into depression.
The most basic items we can think of here within health care are: X-ray technicians, phlebotomy, nursing and home health services. We’re certain there are many more, we’re just listing a few quick ones that require next to no education and pay a living wage. The goal here is to find a profession that allows someone to live a basic life without any special talents.
Psychologists: Scale this idea up and we think Psychologists will become more popular over time. Look around. People are starting to believe in stuff like numerology and astrology. They are starting to take their pets on planes more frequently for “emotional support”. They are suffering from more and more panic attacks as they graduate from college and don’t have the career they expected to have. All of this points to more psychological issues in the future. We’re not trying to “make fun” of these people, we’re simply pointing out the truth. A lot of people are entering adult life with very little to look forward to so they either get depressed and need support or they start believing in hope based items like astrology.
If we can agree that people will struggle in early adult life, becoming a psychologist is likely a safe profession. Assuming you’re good. We’ll write that out again. Only do this if you will be good. Unlike standard healthcare professions we listed above, this area only rewards the best people. If you’re able to help someone break out of depression and get their life in order, you’ll be doing them a huge favor while also being paid handsomely for it. You’re not taking advantage of anyone if you’re able to deliver results. Similarly, if you’re not good at it, you won’t get clients and they’ll all go to the small handful of people who are actually talented (just like everything else in life).
Key examples: summarizing the two above from the very basics of just x-rays and phlebotomy to scaling it up to psychological help and “life coaches”. The ideal would be a life/psychological coach for people who were born rich but are not very talented. As a note, we actually expect this to be common as rich men become more shallow over time and their mothers are not that smart which leads to “normal” functioning children with a lot of money but not a ton of talent. (yes this is judgemental as we assume the extremely attractive woman isn’t that smart… which is ***GENERALLY*** true. As they say, rich men and attractive women never have to deal with reality.)
Services for the Rich: Moving onto the second section, we think the world is moving into two economies. The well off and the not-so-well off. While people will always make excuses saying that you need to be born into money to get rich, hundreds of studies have already proven this false. Since your average person has zero talent but thinks he’s a genius he’ll ignore all of them and complain that he’s not getting his fair share. For fun the math is about 70% off of families lose their wealth by the SECOND generation and 90% by the Third. (Note this applies to the USA)
As usual debating with unsuccessful people isn’t a good use of time… instead… time to sell services to the rich! The rich will pay for practically anything that saves them time. Seriously. They will pay for dog walkers (even if they are overweight), laundry, cleaning and of course faster travel time (Clear and Pre-check are popular for a reason). If you’re willing to grind out long hours before scaling up, anything that is “direct to consumer” and related to time saving will work in major cities (San Francisco, New York, Miami, Los Angeles etc.). The one downside here is that it won’t scale past the major rich people centers of the world. That said. Successful D2C services for the rich is a large enough market.
Key Examples: Dog walking business, tax filing for the rich – if you worked for the IRS before you have an immediate edge, laundry/cleaning/cooking, direct to home tailoring, shoes, designed clothing… Rich people also get bored and you could even come up with a D2C alcohol product (rich people collect wine and “rare whiskey” is appreciating rapidly) could expand this.
Scale Up the Insecurity: As mentioned in the prior post, since the average person is getting more insecure by the day, it means that we’re seeing a rapid rise in drug abuse (steroids) and plastic surgery for both men and women. If you’ve got good sales skills but don’t have the ability to become a plastic surgeon (without incurring mountains of debt), then you could help create/sell ads for these services. If you’ve been on a plane lately you have all seen those ads for face lifts, grey hair etc. This is probably going to be one of the most profitable industries over the next 20-years. People really believe they are making a “more secure“ decision by trading the lambo for the face lift and liposuction. Despite costing tons of money (both options) there is a new trend to not “flash wealth” so they are moving into body reconstruction.
The “looks” industry is still growing rapidly. While you want to avoid the whole personal trainer route as revenues fall off a cliff in a recession, anything related to making people appear youthful is on the rise. We’re even seeing women in their early-mid 30s trying to go to the high-end night clubs (unsuccessful). Seriously, a few of them are doing tons of surgery to try and keep up as they are still single. (hint this is another reason to get rich and throw those classic house parties or bring your own group of people to the clubs where there is an unwritten rule of not showing up “empty handed”).
If you’re talented at sales, then we’d go ahead and enter the mens cosmetics/grooming industry. This is not a troll. If you’re already good at selling womens cosmetics, selling to men in the future is certainly on the table. Instead of selling makeup/skin care you’ll be selling grey hair remedies to insecure men along with facial/grooming products (can also be masks/trimmers etc.). There is a reason why “Hims” is growing rapidly and it has much less to do with the product and has 100x more to do with a shift in demand and marketing. Online dating is still popular according to all metrics, so you could also venture into photography for men as well. Yes. All of this sounds “kooky” but if you look around this appears to be a trend. Trends make money.
Key examples: Wide range again but start with trying to help sell expensive items, creating ads for plastic surgery liposuction etc. The most popular upsell appears to be lip injections for women and botox/dysport. Second to this will be hairlines for men and liposuction. If you can help “normalize” more expensive procedures you’ll make a killing.
“Cute Food”: This isn’t something we’re interested in as it requires a lot of start up costs (brick and mortar). That said, when men settle down (around earl 30s) their Instagram pages suddenly turn into photos of food constantly. Even the guys who are loving their personal lives tend to do this. We don’t know why but it happens right around that age and doesn’t slow down (well into 40s). This is also something that women do all of the time from age 20 and up. There are pages dedicated to “Food Porn” and other such catch phrases to make everything seem cooler than it is.
What does this mean? Well it means you can create a “cool experience” around food and charge an extra 100% for it. Does it really cost $14 to make “organic avocado toast”? No. Does it really cost $5 to make a latte with a foam heart on top? No. Does it really cost an extra $1-2 for toppings at your local desert spot? Nope. As you can see it’s all about making it look cool.
Since budgets will be smaller (not rich category), the average person will spend more on something that looks cool and makes them feel special. On a somewhat related side note, this likely means we’ll see more creative customer service in the future. Could be an opportunity as well. If you can pay your waitresses/servers a bit more but make them do something entertaining to improve the experience it’ll probably pay off. Places like Benihana grew rapidly by offering a new experience and while it has plateaued for now, there are other options (fancy deserts, fancy millennial avocado toast etc.)
Key examples: This can range from the most common items like ice cream and pizza to more expensive items like customized cocktails. You can also go the millennial route by offering trendy items like avocado toast and selling sushi. Come to think of it, since people will be a bit more depressed and men will be more upset (“rage”), marijuana is a great industry for the next several years as it will act as a “cure” and been seen as “cool”.
Travel Bucket: We’re leaving this for last since its still extremely popular. As mentioned the new status items are plastic surgery and high quality travel experiences. Since there are two groups here: rich and poor, we just don’t see how anyone is going to start a private jet company from scratch. If you’re balling that hard probably don’t need to read anymore. That said, here are some ideas we’ve been thinking about.
New variety of a travel pillow or lower back support. Since most travelers will be in economy, there has got to be a way to fix the experience. If you’re traveling in economy, the way to sleep is by getting a window seat, placing a pillow on your lower back and angling with your head on the window and legs in a diagonal direction towards the middle seat. This maximizes the leg room you’ll get if you’re flying economy. Everyone has to fly economy at some point unless they’re in the $100M+ camp.
So. Instead of complaining about this, we’ve been tinkering with a seat adjustment product that would be placed on the seat (low back). Currently, trying to test this with various pillows but there is certainly something there. The neck pillows don’t work well since the headrest forces you to lean slightly forward at times (not sure who designed that thing to be so big). Essentially, the key is finding a way to create a “plank” that goes backward so you increase the angle of your body as much as possible. If we can figure this out we’ll attempt to sell it since it would make flying 100x better.
Key examples: we gave out one item we’re trying to figure out, but anything that’ll make the flight experience more enjoyable would be huge. Most flights are just terrible for the vast majority, at the end of the day unless it’s an international flight, there are are not a lot of first/business class seats so the regular economy section needs significant improvement.
General Unique Stand Outs: This is not related to making money. More general information. Since we know we’ve moved from “materialistic items” to “plastic surgery and grooming”, you can imagine that the easiest way to stand out is by doing the reverse. If you’re sporting a nice watch or expensive shoes you’ll garner more attention than the person who paid for the improved hairline. This is just due to math as the trend is to get “cool tattoos” and focus on non-materialistic experiences. The funny thing is that if you make it to the real top of society (we’ll draw the line at $5M+ net worth) all of those things do come back anyway (nice clothing, shoes, watches). So. You’ll be sending a differentiated message.
We needed to make this clear as the trend does not necessarily mean you should “do them”. Instead the trends are there to make you money while you spend said money on improving your personal life. The best example of this is people who sell $50-100 sports jerseys to super fans but don’t even enjoy the sport. Or the statisticians who bet on sports without any interest in the game. Unsurprisingly those two people win the most.
Q&A will be available on Friday June 14 for purchasers only.
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