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Financial product development a la AlphaClone

Posted on June 18, 2010 at 8:58 am

Interesting case study(.pdf) from Venture Capital and Private Equity Club (UCLA chapter) on the launch of piggyback investing platform, AlphaClone.

Combining an interview with founder and CEO, Maz Jadallah, the paper includes his comments that should provide a resounding recommendation for using blogging as a lead generation tool for premium financial products:

Jadallah: Hiring a PR firm turned out to be a disaster for us. They simply did not perform well. The important point here is what does a startup do when they have zero/limited budget for marketing. Answer: blog, blog, blog, use word of mouth, run affiliate programs, cold call reporters, try to get content syndicated on third party sites!!

Source

AlphaClone, LLC: Launching an Investment Services Business in the
Midst of a Financial Crisis
(Undergraduate Journal)

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  • Video Review: Trefis

    Posted on June 28, 2010 at 4:06 pm UTC

    Trefis.com is a great site to model up technology companies. There are some great tools — some analytical, some social, that allow investors to play around with growth/profitability assumptions to forecast a stock price.

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  • Best investment newsletter resources

    Posted on June 27, 2010 at 12:26 pm UTC

    Throughout the writing of my book, Tradestreaming, I’ve been asked time and time again if there are any good resources (lists, really) of the top investment newsletters. Unfortunately, there aren’t any all-encompassing sites that investors can tap. This post is a start. Please comment or contact me if you have anything to add, as well.

    Top investment newsletter resources

    There a couple of firms that market multiple newsletters.  Sometimes, these are just publishing firms that produce different products.  Others, like Forbes, market 3rd part newsletters.

    Diversified investment newsletter businesses

    InvestorPlace: Philips Newsletters, a giant in the financial newsletter place, uses InvestorPlace as its flagship site to market its newsletters.

    StockTwits: More blogs/trading systems than traditional investment newsletters, StockTwits’ store sells subscriptions to the blogs of many of StockTwits’ top investors and analysts.

    Cabot: In the business for 40 years, Cabot publishes a variety of newsletters.

    MoneyWeek: The UK’s best selling finance magazine also offers a variety of subscription investment letters.

    Stansberry Research: Another 800lb gorilla in the financial newsletter space, Stansberry publishes almost 20 different subscription newsletters

    Motley Fool: Of course, we couldn’t leave out The Fool — they’re got a stable of about 10 newsletters.

    3rd part newsletter distributors

    Forbes Newsletters: In addition to the Forbes.com site, the old business mag distributes both their own premium newsletters as well as leading newsletters like Al Frank’s Prudent Speculator and the Obeweis Report.

    Financial newsletter directories

    MarketWatch Newsletter Directory: Dow Jones’ MarketWatch has a database of many of the industry’s top financial newsletters.

    Newsletter Access: This site claims a directory of over 9000 investment letters

    Seeking Alpha’s Newsletter Authors: The financial content aggregator has a listing of all its authors categorized as newsletter authors

    Investment Newsletter Benchmarking

    Hulbert Financial Digest: Mark Hulbert has been following the performance of top newsletters for heaven-knows how many years.  He publishes a newsletter himself of his findings on which newsletters exhibit top performance — and which don’t.

    Investimonials: Users submit their own rankings on many of the industry’s leading investment newsletters.

    Crowdsourced Trading Strategies

    Zignals: Not sure why more people don’t know about this Irish firm but they allow users to publish trading strategies and investors to subscribe to them.

    Academic Research

    The Equity Performance of Investment Newsletters

    Herding Among Investment Newsletters: Theory and Evidence

    Market Timing Ability and Volatility Implied in Investment Newsletters’ Asset Allocation Recommendations

    The Performance of Investment Newsletters

    How to Start an Investment Newsletter

    NewsletterGrowth: This is a shameless plug for a site that I’m incubating that really helpful for investment newsletter writers/publishers and people thinking about getting into the business to maximize their writing, marketing, and monetization of their investment newsletters.  Check it out — there’s also a 20+ page ebook about how to start an investment newsletter.

    What to do next

    I’ve got a lot more interesting stuff to share: weekly tips, updates, special offers, etc.  Make sure you sign up for my free mailing list here.

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  • Chart.ly’s new beta screencasting tool enables analysts to up their games

    Posted on June 24, 2010 at 8:29 pm UTC

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  • …and Tradestreaming the book is a go, Houston

    Posted on June 21, 2010 at 12:36 pm UTC

    I’m proud to announce the official sales launch of my book, Tradestream your Way to Profits: How to Build a Killer Portfolio in the Age of Social Media.

    It’s been a *long haul* and I received a lot of great help/support from many of the investment industry’s top thinkers.  Thanks to everyone who’s listened to my ideas, helped me vet them, contributed their own perspectives and helped propel this work forward (you know who you are :-) )

    I think this is just the beginning of an exploration of the new modes of investment research empowered by the Internet in general and social media sites like Facebook and Twitter in particular.  There is a ton of great stuff going on at startups in Silicon Valley, New York, Europe and Israel.

    I plan to continue to analyze tradestreaming strategies and the new technology platforms enabling this all to happen.

    Bonus Material

    To accompany the launch of the book, I’ve compiled an ebook entitled “Tradestreaming and the Future of Investing”.  It’s a compendium of opinions from many of the online investing industry’s thought leaders from a variety of different disciplines.  It’s a really interesting view about where we are and where we’re headed in financial communications, research, and investing.

    Hedge fund analysts, financial advisors and brokers, investment advisors, investment relations professionals, Internet entrepreneurs, and all investors will find something useful and thought-provoking.

    You can download it here (.pdf).

    What to do next

    I’ve got a lot more interesting stuff to share: weekly tips, updates, special offers, etc.  Make sure you sign up for my free mailing list here.

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  • Top business books to read this summer

    Posted on June 20, 2010 at 9:36 am UTC

    Here is a short compilation of top business books taken from the New York Times best seller list (if you purchase off these links, my Amazon account gets credited a minute sum).  Hopefully, this is useful.  Some, if not all, of these titles should be on your nightstand.

    *************
    The Blind Side (Movie Tie-in Edition) (Movie Tie-in Editions): As always, Lewis is a great story teller in the world of business and sports (think previous hit, Moneyball — a great read) and this tale of rags to fame was supported by a recent movie with the same title.  My kids even enjoyed it.

    Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry into the Value of Work: Like this one a lot.  As a fan of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, this book eschews the cubicle life for something more valuable, real — and it’s found by using one’s hands and body.

    The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook: A Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal: As a Harvard grad myself, I always find these sordid tales of great minds acting like lunatics while pursuing their fortunes.  Facebook, the company and its founders, are totally complicit.  Mezrich is a great writer (The movie, 21, was a takeoff of his Bringing Down the House)

    Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard: Heath Brothers (of Made to Stick fame) are at it again with a gameplan to help readers face hard changes in life and make them a little bit easier.

    Sign up to get more real-time updates from me and Tradestreaming.

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About Tradestreaming

Tradestreaming is a community of investors learning directly from experts. I’m Zack Miller, investor, entrepreneur, and founder of Tradestreaming.com and I literally wrote the book on how to invest in the age of Facebook and Twitter. Tradestreaming is the resource I’ve created to help me become a better investor.  I believe it will help you … Continue Reading