Permissionless Profiles

This case study is a fantastic example of the exponential potential of working in public, leading with value, and leveraging open networks:


Polina Marinova Pompliano studies the world's most interesting people and companies for her media company, The Profile.

She researches, crafts and publishes these in-depth profiles herself, and leverages the Substack platform to own (and monetize) the relationship with her audience directly:

“I read 1.8 million words last year. I did that in the name of finding interesting, well-reported profiles worthy of inclusion in The Profile.

I always ask myself one question, “Will the reader learn something from this?” If the answer is no, I don’t include it.”

These articles go out to thousands of subscribers every Sunday (but like every other media entity on the planet, The Profile started at zero).

One of her recent features: Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.

Polina does an excellent job of leveraging her work across platforms — below, you can see the highlights of the article translated into a Twitter thread:

Shortly after, Polina gets a Retweet (and glowing endorsement) from The Rock himself, to his 15 million+ Twitter Followers:

Polina kindly provided insight into the numbers behind such an endorsement:

Shortly after that, a repost to his 210,000,000 followers on Instagram:

Polina's business operates on a subscription model (I am a paid subscriber and recommend the investment), and like all internet businesses, this kind of traffic-generating organic endorsement is the absolute holy grail.

If you're not already following Polina, here you go.

Want more examples of creating value without permission?

This is an excerpt module from The Permissionless Apprentice workshop.


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