If someone were to pick your brain on video chat, would you...

Jack Cooper
7 replies
Hi all! I'm Jack Cooper, a partner at BrainPick.com. We're a new video chat platform for people to pick each other's brains, share their expertise, give advice and discuss 1000s of topics—from fitness to finance to fashion. It's like "FaceTime for Professionals." Brain Pickers can charge a per-minute fee for their time, offer it for free, or donate their earnings to the charity of their choice. We're curious which option everyone would choose if they were to offer advice about their specific field and industry. Thanks in advance! JC
Offer them free advice
Charge them a per-minute fee for your advice
Charge them a per-minute fee for your advice and donate your earnings to charity

Replies

Jack of all trades (and master of none)
I would not mind a 4th option: I earn some credit for offering my expertise in one area and then I can use that credit later to talk to some experts in other areas.
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Partner at Brain Pick
@sisi_l Thanks! That’s a really smart idea. We also might want to give users the option to buy credits at a volume discount. What do you think the currency conversion would be? Most of the current members on Brain Pick are charging between $1-$5 per minute, and the average call length is 12 minutes. Thanks again!
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Jack of all trades (and master of none)
@jack_cooper you mean the conversion between real money and credit? I will make it simple $1 = 1 credit. I assume you make money by taking commission from the call charges so I would not layer on any more commissions when users convert between credit and cash. Just an idea - maybe every call should be priced by credit? Users have the options to buy or earn credits. I have seen companies like ClassPass moved away from dollar-based pricing to credit-based. It seems more flexible - you can sell credits with volume discount and you can even come up with some subscription packages to make your customers more recurring!
Partner at Brain Pick
@sisi_l Thanks! I love the idea of recurring and subscription-based models are always stable. I’m still not sure some of the more traditional advisors and consultants would be open to receiving credits vs. good old fashioned cash, but as an optional transactional method it absolutely has merit!
EveryMon
How do you get around the challenge that people don't want advice? Many of the people I have been working with are looking for - Validation - Encouragement - A yes person Very rarely will they want - Challenge to their ideas - Confrontation to sharpen the ideas - Head in sand, difficult questions. I've been doing this for 8 years on and off in different industries and sectors. If you can somehow "vet" that the askers are hungry to learn but humble enough to have the candid and honest conversations, I think you would see a lot of growth, for a chance to meet exceptional people and help them on their journey, I'd donate my time for free and if its good we can build links down the road. How do you vet advisors? I'm curious how that works.
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Partner at Brain Pick
@breffni_potter Thanks for the great insights and input! Based on our current members, it seems like it all depends on the vertical (and a little bit of semantics). For example, when you need to chat with a plumber quickly, it’s certainly “advice”. However, if you’re eager to learn more about, say, Neuroscience or Impressionist Art, it’s likely a dialogue. If it’s a high-profile influencer or celebrity, it’s probably a lot of random Q&A (and gushing and geeking out). If it’s a peer-to-peer chat, its more knowledge-transfer, and if it’s instruction (Music, Fitness, Finance), it’s expertise and feedback. To your point, it’s impossible to understand someone’s true motivation when they request a Brain Pick call. So we’ve implemented a “quick message” feature that allows members to ask each other a few probing questions before a call is actually scheduled. While not a perfect solution, it does help everyone determine if there’s a fit, so nobody’s time (or money) is wasted. In the same spirit, we always offer the first two minutes of every call for free, so members can further decide if there’s a match. Lastly, terrific question on vetting members and establishing credibility. We only allow users to access Brain Pick through their LinkedIn accounts, which quickly provides other members with their full professional profiles, before ever requesting a call. It will likely slow down adoption by excluding all of the other social networks as login options, but we think it’s worth the trade-off. Anyhow, thanks again for the great comment; we really appreciate it! We hope to see you on Brain Pick soon and hear more feedback and input on how we can improve the platform and community. JC
Partner at JAW Advertising in Toronto.
I'm sure you're familiar with Clarity.fm which is in a similar space aimed at startups. My understanding of how they do it is per-minute consulting, which seems the most beneficial to everyone involved. I'm a firm believer in "you get what you pay for."
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