After a few hours of heavyweight-hustling-brain-exercising (or school / work), do you ever find yourself craving for an easy lunch? Do not worry, it is (relatively) normal, you are (probably) just human.
Personally, I enjoy eating something fancier than a slice of ham smacked on a dry piece of bread with a smear of butter in between to introduce the two parties. You see, even though the ham and bread might small talk and exchange a few jokes, what you really seek is for them to properly get to know each other. This is where I like to introduce bread to one of my closest friends:
Tuna Mousse. He is a quite a charismatic funny guy, but he is also a stable conversation partner. Clever jokes and quick stabs will keep the bread’s eyes fixated on him, but she will stay for the deep conversations on future hopes and dreams. He listens, and within minutes this gentleman feels like something closer to an old acquaintance than a mysterious stranger.
Okay, I’ll stop before this turns into a culinary love story.

Why this recipe?

Tuna Mousse, like many of my favorites, is Q.E.C-certified:

  1. Quick
  2. Easy
  3. Cheap

Tuna mousse can be made in large quantities and later snuck into bread to create a shamelessly juicy tuna-sandwich. You will love it. My simple tuna mousse primarily consists of (but not limited to):

  1. Tuna (duh)
  2. Mayonnaise (great amounts)
  3. Salt and pepper (to taste)
    I like to combine two cans of tuna with 2-3 tablespoons of mayonnaise which is stirred and then seasoned relentlessly with salt and pepper (a flavory tuna is a good tuna). This is the tuna I use:

Danish tuna!

The Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 can of tuna (~5 oz / 150g drained)
  • 1½ tablespoons mayonnaise
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Stir together ingredients until light and slick.
  2. Season to satisfaction.
  3. Refrigerate or enjoy immediately.

This tuna mousse is perfect for a quick lunch snack. I prefer to enjoy It spread on or inside sandwiches, depending on if it is an open or a closed one. Already familiar with tuna mousse? Check out my ideas for Making Your Tuna Mousse More Interesting.

This post is also available in audio-form.

A few months ago, I was lucky to be a witness of the rise and fall of a local coffee-subscription service. The concept was pretty simple: You pay a monthly fee of some 50 DKK (~8 USD) and receive a cup of coffee a day from your local barista.

The target consumer would be a hard-working 20-something person walking to their workplace in central Aarhus every day. Then, during their daily commute, they would be able to pick up their usual morning-coffee. All in all, helping them save a little money since they would buy a cup a day anyway and this option would be cheaper. The app would be supporting the barista by stabilizing their income stream in the form of subscriptions. At least this seemed like a concept that would make sense.

However, the business side turned out to be fallible.

Firstly, let’s look at what worked:

More users = more growth!

My introduction to this service came from a friend of mine. Someday, late summer, my classmate walked in with a latte in his hand and a complacent smile on his face.
“Dude, check out this coffee. I got it for free.”
This sparked my interest of course, so I asked him about this. He told me about the app, and an invite-a-friend-feature which gave a free week of membership to both you and the person you invited. Classic user-acquisition strategy for an online-platform, I thought.

The usual caveat of a ‘free trial’ is that it really isn’t free. You always give something in return, whether that be your credit card information or phone number. Basically, something to keep a hold of you once the trial ends, or to turn you into a sales lead.

-Coffee pal wasn’t like that.

Registering was as simple as giving an email. No credit card. The whole app was completely non-binding. Once I discovered that fact, I had to check it out. A guy invited me - I invited another guy, and within minutes I had 14 days worth of coffee. After a few days, hundreds of high school students had heard of the app and we were all restless to get a nice hot, free coffee.

Upon reading this, it should feel wrong to you. If you haven’t noticed the problem yet, let me explain:

Who cares about economics?

Lets look at this scenario at a simple level:

I registered myself, giving away:

  • An email address, some 0’s and 1’s (more or less free)

I received:

  • Coffee, a real physical product

The problem:

  • Nothing stopping me from creating multiple users, expanding my coffee-consumption to infinite levels!
  • Well, nothing except from ethics

A guy even went as far as to register with so many fake emails, that he could get free coffee every day for a year. A year! Imagine the guy on the other end paying for it all!

We’ve all probably heard it before: Grow your business first, then later, money will come. And let’s be honest. giving away free stuff works really well for growth.

But unfortunately, eventually, someone is going to pay for something. In this story it ended about a week later, when we entered a local cafe, asking for a free coffee with our app as usual. Though this time, we were told that the cafe had left the membership and would like us to stop coming around asking for free coffee.

Money, Money, Money

The lesson to learn from this story is very simple, and also very boring:

Think about revenue. It’s important.

It can be tempting ignore business thoughts and focus on scaling, but the business model is really the core of the business. Screw it up and you’ll be right back where you began. Or worse, you’ll be like the creator of this app: completely broke (and probably in debt).

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