Creator Science
Creator Science
Jul 26, 2022
#110: Polina Marinova Pompliano – How "The Internet's Biographer" writes great profiles
Play • 52 min


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Polina Pompliano is the author of The Profile, which studies the most successful and interesting people and companies in business, entertainment, tech, sports, and more.

The Profile is a paid newsletter. Before Polina was writing The Profile, she wrote for Fortune, USA Today, and CNN. Polina also has nearly 130,000 followers on Twitter and in order to write exceptional profiles, says she read 1.8 million words online last year – the equivalent of 25 books.

Profiles are a rare breed of writing – and Polina is really good at it. She’s written profiles of Sara Blakely, Elon Musk, Dwayne The Rock Johnson, Dolly Parton, Kris Jenner, and many more.

In this episode, we talk about the difference between profiles and biographies, the economics behind a paid newsletter, the most effective strategies she’s found for growth, and why the secret to a great profile is found in the Details.

Full transcript and show notes

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00:12 - New projects

01:00 - Today’s guest

01:40 - Polina by the numbers

03:00 - What we learn today

03:40 - Why profiles are great

05:40 - Difference between profiles and biographies

06:58 - What makes a great profile?

10:00 - How Polina approaches research

12:30 - How to tell what matters to someone

13:00 - How does Polina find time to do research

15:33 - What if you can’t get primary research?

16:10 - Response between primary and secondary research

17:09 - Ever have someone get mad?

18:35 - Free vs Paid offerings

19:40 - The Profile metrics

21:00 - The Profile business model

24:00 - What it takes to do a paid newsletter

28:00 - Important factors for growth

29:16 - Newsletter subscriber behavior

30:44 - Newsletter pricing

31:10 - Best methods for newsletter growth

33:27 - Newsletter cross promos

36:38 - Free to paid subscriber journey

39:10 - Name recognition and views

43:49 - Most difficult part of a newsletter business



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