howardlindzon

Howard Lindzon

Co-Founder and CEO of Stocktwits. GP at Social Leverage. Loves popcorn.

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON August 28, 2015

Discussion

howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
Hi I am Howard Lindzon. I love stocks, markets, investing and everything about startups. My focus of late is on the financial web. I invest in startups through Social Leverage. Awesome companies that I was an angel investor in include Buddy Media, Lifelock, Tubemogul, Ticketfly and Robinhood. I started Wallstrip in 2006 which CBS acquired and also co-founded Stocktwits where I still hang a hat too. If I had only not passed on Twitter and Zynga.... Now Fire away ...
Michael Ackley
Michael Ackley@michael_ack · Lead iOS Developer, Benzinga Inc
Hey Howard, I work for Benzinga.com. I was wondering if you could shed some light on Stocktwits iOS strategy. Your favorite features? What would you like to see in a financial analysis app? What has worked/not worked? Is app user engagement data on the Stocktwits app promising?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@michael_ack our ios strategy is to give people the fastest and smartest way to get the pulse of the market fro their watchlist and trending list. another goal is to allow a user to be able to find out about their stocks from a group of people that 'have their back'. Finally, help beginners and experts find a group of people that help them stay up to date on the markets and stocks they own or are interested in at all times. Notifications are important in doing that already today.
Ryan Hoover
Ryan Hoover@rrhoover · Founder, Product Hunt
Hey, Howard! I'm curious to hear your thoughts about the recent downturn in the tech stock market as of late. Why is this happening and should early stage startups be concerned this might affect fundraising?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@rrhoover i think it started when CNBC opened a SF office of course. Maybe they secretly opened a chinese office last year before it's crash. i know people laugh and think I am being mean, but it has a lot of truth. People chase. the best investors and founders do NOT chase. It is hard to differentiate between chasing and trend following and it feels like too many people chased including founders, investors, media attention and so now we have some gluts of suppply and also demand imbalances. I dont think we were ever near a bubble. Oil was a bubble, 3d printing was a bubble, Maybe wearable tech could be a bubble and biotech is showing signs of a bubble.
Erik Torenberg
Erik Torenberg@eriktorenberg · Former Product Hunt
@howardlindzon what are your predictions of future bubbles? Is it a good time to angel invest?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@eriktorenberg its always a great time to angel invest if you know whyt you are angel investing. If its a hobby you will lose unless lucky. head to vegas or by penny stocks. its more fun. if its your passion than you habe never had better live mentors and tools to make it a business. The key is if you are doing it with your own money or others money. i cant predict future bubbles. not my job. I dont thinl its a good risk reward to worry about that future till we are deep in it.
Erik Torenberg
Erik Torenberg@eriktorenberg · Former Product Hunt
@howardlindzon "The key is if you are doing it with your own money or others money." can you elaborate more here?
Sydney Liu
Sydney Liu@sydney_liu_sl · Co-Founder of Commaful.com
@howardlindzon Hi Howard, Congrats on everything; StockTwits actually helped me learn that I enjoyed business and using my analytical skills when I was in high school. Love it! You do a lot of investing, but angel investing seems like the most different type of investing ( compared to running a hedge fund, being a technical and financial analyst, etc.). What do you look for in your angel investments, and if you think your background in finance has helped you, what elements were you able to use from having a deep understanding of finance to help you with your angel investing?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@sydney_liu_sl everyone needs to know how to read a balance sheet and understand cash outflow at starups because most just spend money. this is a long answer to deal with but experience matters more than textbooks.
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
My background has helped me most because I love what I do and live it everyday. to be the right founder, domain experience really matters and a passion for solving a real problem, even if its just your problem at first
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@sydney_liu_sl glad you like stocktwits.
Steve Weiner
Steve Weiner@steve_wein · ceo @spot
@howardlindzon how do you think banks can better coexist and partner with startups moving forward?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@sweiner2008 banks are getting it finally. in 2008 it all changed. we went from a world of financial leverage to a world of social leverage. Social is now the currency of the millenials. a teller or physical branch means little. UI and trust is all that matters and so if JP Morgan cant build they better buy and they cant buy unless they have a corp dev team and people that can integrate modern UI. The banks that thrive like bank of Internet, JP Morgan , Oxzark will be monsters once they come downstream for millenials.
How do you envision the future of Stocktwits? How about Product Hunt?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@oshmanm product hunt is a lot like a market in itself. the votes can be bought (like wall street), but eventually the good stuff stays at the top. we will look back as product hunt gets older and the data should be interesting. as for stocktwits we have a huge vision that is always hard because of limited capital and focus and the future is being the fastest and smartest way to catch people up on the markets and connect new investors with the right mentors and people to help them learn and enjoy the language of the markets. if you can understand the language of the stock market you will be a better investor/entrepreneur.
Vasu Nadella
Vasu Nadella@vasu_nadella
@howardlindzon where do you think social analytics is going? What are the most exciting companies you're seeing come up in the next year?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@vasunadella i am a biased investor in simplymeasured and tubemogul. In the stock market it is a third dimension that is just getting started Price and volume rules markets and still do. But WHO says something and how influential they are socially and when they say it now matters more than ever.
Erik Torenberg
Erik Torenberg@eriktorenberg · Former Product Hunt
Hey, Howard! to piggy back @rrhoover's question, what are some of the biggest misconceptions the startup world has about the hard finance world?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@eriktorenberg every sector is hard the biggest problem is for me The SEC and FINRA. the incumbents have such a huge advantage (bloomberg, reuters, PR ewswire, schwab etc JP Morgan). JP morgan spent 1 billion on fucking legal in first half of 2015. Until robonhood in my sector, millenials were stuck with $8 commissions and complex onboarding and bad UI. things will change rapidly now. I love the idea of robo advisory but its a feature to me and in a bit of a bubble because of slim marging. obviously everyone in that space will argue that its about the long term stickiness and size of accounts but customer acquisition will be very high for a long time. the wealthfronts and betterments have a huge edge right now and I would not want to be in that war with the old banks. that said, acquisitions are inevitable
Steve Weiner
Steve Weiner@steve_wein · ceo @spot
can you talk about why you think younger generations are interested in actively managing their portfolio?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@sweiner2008 because the can. an 18 year old can now buy 1 share of their 10 favorite consumer brands (which historically offer best stock market returns) for no commissin and learn to avergae in and out for no commission. pretty simple. the next big finanvcial companies will be about onboaarding and education and idea generation
Stefan Cheplick
Stefan Cheplick@scheplick
@howardlindzon Who are some of your favorite follows on StockTwits? :)
Niv Dror
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
@HowardLindzon, if you could co-host a stand-up special with anyone in tech, who would it be? #😂
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@nivo0o0 nobody is good. I think a good straight man for me will always be smartest people on the subjects being disscussed so in tech it would be om mail fred wilson marc andreesen, etc
Erik Torenberg
Erik Torenberg@eriktorenberg · Former Product Hunt
Are you investing in any bitcoin startups? are you excited about the space?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@eriktorenberg social leverage has only invested in changetip. nick is so passionate and impossible to stop. i love this announcement with GYFT today and Vinny at GYFT (first data) is a great friend, shitty golfer and crazier than me. http://www.coindesk.com/changeti... but its not a sector yet for me. too many smart people already well capitalized and I am watching this trend because I am too old for new tricks
Scott Weiner
Scott Weiner@brandwagon · iOS Development. Web Development. UI/UX.
Hi Howard, do you have any plans to start a fintech incubator/accelerator of your own? With your expertise and the largest community of active traders to test ideas with, it seems like you'd bring a lot of value to the table.
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@brandwagon nah. techstars and so many others already doing this and to be honest I suck at organization. I like seeing teams and finished products, not the early messy stuff
Which public tech companies are the most undervalued? Which startups soon to go public would you invest in at a fair IPO price?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@oshmanm i dont focus on undervalued. I focus on overvalued but misunderstood mostly. i wrote about this on my blog all the time
Kevin Park
Kevin Park@kevinsmpark · Product Designer at Facebook
@howardlindzon - Hi Howard, thanks for this opportunity. As a big fan of StockTwits for past three years (https://medium.com/tech-talk/fee...), I'm curious if you could share with us which metrics have influenced the development of StockTwits the most, and also how the team filters noise that can potentially leave a powerful influence on the StockTwits community.
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@kevinsmpark great question as this is where I have struggled the most over the years but @zerobeta has done a good job with @davepinke helping me focus. the metric I am good at hel[ping push is engagement and organic growth. I dont understand the growth hacks and we should be better at the loops and the retention and the data backend side of the business which we are getting too.
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@kevinsmpark today the netrics that matter are sessions on mobile, monthly active users, and total audience.
Stockbuyer2015
Stockbuyer2015@stockbuyer2015
what is something you are thinking of doing for stocktwits but haven't gotten around to do?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@stockbuyer2015 we will eventually add long form messaging around a template or two for research people
Erik Torenberg
Erik Torenberg@eriktorenberg · Former Product Hunt
HUGE thanks to @howardlindzon for taking the time to join us today. awesome answers that we'll continue to share
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@eriktorenberg fun. thanks. text is hard in real time.
Brett Bivens
Brett Bivens@brettbivens · Early Stage Investor at TechNexus
@howardlindzon It seemed like that a16z post on metrics really struck chord with the startup community. My thought is that it was b/c people have a desire for some sort of standardization to benchmark themselves & make startup investing/raising seem a bit less random. Is a more standardized approach to tracking metrics and reporting those metrics to stakeholders achievable in the startup market? Is is even a good idea? Obviously you have to contend with the cost of forcing compliance (startups don't have excess money to spend) as well as the incentives in the current set up where a bit of deceptiveness can be advantageous since due diligence is often lacking.
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@brettbivens oy. thats a beast. the metric i like is engagement. I focus on people waznting to live on or with the products we invest in and the founders just know their space. we are wrong of course a lot but thats what I care about early. I am pretty old so diving into metrics all day is a tough skill to learn and there is so much false data in metrics that is not discussed. Intuition is underrated.
Brett Bivens
Brett Bivens@brettbivens · Early Stage Investor at TechNexus
Nello D'Andrea
Nello D'Andrea@nellodandrea · software developer
@howardlindzon Hi Howard, in what region of the world is social leverage active ? u.s. or outside, e.g. Europe ?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
Richard Altman
Richard Altman@mitzkahdrinnen · Idea Guy behind inviid
@howardlindzon would you invest in applications trying to start and finish consumer purchases inside social media?
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@mitzkahdrinnen we do and yes. send decks...
howardlindzon
howardlindzon@howardlindzon · stocktwits, Social Leverage
@mitzkahdrinnen narvar just raised 10 million from accel and we were angels and particpated further for example