Who wants to be hired? (May-September 2022)
Location: Los Angeles, CA (United States)
Willing to relocate: N
- Marketing strategy
- Content creation
- Creative direction
- Project management (intermediate)
- Operations (limited)
- Business development (limited)
- Graphic design (intermediate)
- Video editing (intermediate)
- Website and social media management (limited)
Email: inkodachrome ( — at the dot come of — ) gmail
- While the bulk of my background is in content and marketing, I'm also a former founder with business, operations, and sales experience. Usually hired for one role, I'm often shifted over to a generalist position that connects multiple departments and/or business areas. I'm interested in expanding my skills to include data science and coding.
- I work well solo or in a group and love solving difficult problems!
- Open to various cause areas with particular interest in longtermism, s-risks, civilian resilience, and global priorities.
- Preference for a full-time position.
- Available two weeks from offer.
- I’m somewhat new to EA, but have done an 80,000 Hours advising session and am currently scripting a video piece for Giving What We Can.
Announcing the launch of Open Phil's new website
Congrats on the new site! I'm excited to check it out!
I feel compelled to offer feedback on the new mission statement — if only to improve communication and comprehension.
“Our mission is to help others as much as we can with the resources available to us.”
It’s a short and simple sentence, but I believe it would be unclear to many unfamiliar with Open Phil or EA.
The statement doesn’t say what you do to "help" others, which could be interpreted as anything from grants for college to lobbying on healthcare to a smoother commute.
Similarly, “resources” is only contextualized by “available to us.” This doesn't really give the reader any information.
This is probably nitpicky, but “as much as we can” changes the rhythm of the sentence (up and down), and takes up too much space for its purpose.
The impact (or results) of your work is also missing from the statement I.e. “We help X do Y to achieve Z.”
Ideally, you should be able to put your mission statement on your homepage and a new visitor would know exactly what you do and why they should lean in to learn more. I don't think this statement does that.
Here are some ideas:
- "Our mission is to leverage accessible resources to improve the lives of others."
- "We leverage existing resources to improve the lives of others."
- "We deploy available funds and useful resources toward bettering people’s lives."
- "Our mission is to use radical empathy and innovative ideas to better others' lives."
- "We combine data, resources, and empathy to improve the lives of others."
- "We help improve the lives of others through data, resources, and empathy."
- "Our mission is to direct more attention and resources to better others' lives."
These were quick sketches, so I'm not advocating for any one in particular -- and it’s not my intention to take liberties with any of the crucial information in your mission statement. (For example, you may have intentionally put “others” instead of “people” as a way to encompass all living beings.) The samples are more for springboarding ideas that could help you develop and refine the statement a little further.
Targeting Celebrities to Spread Effective Altruism
I think this is a great idea and -- as a newish member here -- am surprised it's never been attempted.
Some additional thoughts...
While the terms "celebrity" and "influencer" can sometimes be used interchangeably (and crossover does exist), the marketing world often views the two personas as distinct. There has been some research on the differences between the "celebrity endorsement" and "influencer recommendation" with influencers often delivering better results. This is supported by micro influencers often getting higher engagement rates than much larger influencers and celebrities.
You can use this tool to not only explore the engagement rates of different Instagram influencers, but also the cost of partnerships. Here's a quick comparison between Justin Bieber and The Physics Girl :
- Followers: 233M followers
- Posts: 7,122 posts
- Estimated Cost Per Post: $463,948 - $773,246
- Engagement Rate: 0.18%
The Physics Girl
- Followers: 146,489
- Posts: 716
- Estimated Cost Per Post: $439.89 - $733.15
- Engagement Rate: 3.51%
Even with the lower engagement rate, you're still going to get massive exposure through Justin Bieber. However, audience match and behavior should still be considered when estimating CR (conversion rate):
- Is the cause/message likely to resonate with the celebrity or influencer's audience?
- Are members of the audience likely to take action around the cause/message?
This idea of "niching down" can also be applied to the cause area or organization. In other words, instead of a celebrity or influencer endorsing EA, they could instead promote specific EA-related causes or charities e.g. global poverty and health or Giving What We Can, AI alignment or The Future of Life Institute, etc. EA, as a cause area and philosophy, has a bit of a learning curve attached and some/many people might not want to put in the work -- losing them as potential advocates along the way.
On the other hand, a specific cause or charity is likely easier for the uninitiated to understand and support. Some examples of messaging (celebrity voice)...
- EA - I support Effective Altruism -- a social movement and philosophy focused on maximizing the good you can do in your career, projects, and other life decisions. Learn more and see how you can get involved as well! (link in bio)
- Global poverty and health - I believe helping people in low-income countries is the best way to focus my philanthropic efforts. See why I give and how you can get involved as well! (link in bio)
- Giving What We Can - I just took a pledge to give 10% of my income to help fight global poverty. Find out how you can get involved as well! (link in bio)
Each of those blurbs could be punched up, but I tried to keep the last lines as close as possible for a more apples-to-apples comparison (subjective as that may be). There are pros and cons to each but, generally, the more targeted, clearer, and specific a message, the higher its engagement and CTR (click-through rate). Still, you'd want to test variations across audiences, cause areas, and CTAs (calls to action).
All of that said, I think celebrities/influencers promoting EA would be mostly good. My guess is that going more granular with aligned influencer audiences would produce better quality and longer lasting results.
A case for targeted introductions to effective giving for specific (workplace) audiences
A lot of interesting points here. “Like to like” can be a great approach. In addition to the shared persona, this technique can also help inform distribution. For example, LinkedIn comes to mind as a place for leveraging network effects. That said, Facebook Groups, Subreddits, Discord Channels, and other niche communities could produce higher engagement rates.
Still, while a shared profession might prequalify a reader, offer the creator special access, and/or hold an audience’s attention longer, crafting meaningful content remains a key difficulty. You mention, "articles would differ in addressing the particular concerns of people in that target group," which is a solid goal. However, targeted content can often be reduced to baseline commonalities. So, a potential downside risk with professional targeting is writing toward a job title rather than a person.
Using the example, "How this software engineer approaches charity” -- noting that this is likely a placeholder title -- I’d start developing the content by asking:
- Who is the piece for?
- What does the piece hope to accomplish?
At first glance, the title indicates that the article would be written for software engineers. However, it could be argued that this is more the intention of the author and that the audience is really people who might be interested in this particular software engineer’s charitable musings. So, unless the software engineer is a thought leader or influencer in their space, this content might be too niche to achieve a sizable impact. Conversely, the article might intrigue someone generally interested in giving and charity, but the specificity of the software engineer makes it less tailored for them.
When designing both titles and content, I find it helpful to shift perspectives from writer to reader. Here are some questions I use:
- Why is this piece of content interesting to the reader?
- How does it speak to their personal goals or pain points?
- Does the piece offer value and/or provide solutions?
- Is the message engaging…helpful…meaningful?
Using these questions, one might arrive at titles like:
- How I Made Software Engineering a Fulfilling Career (Audience: Engineers looking for meaning through their career)
- Giving Like a Coder: How I Hacked My Charitable Contributions (Audience: Engineers looking to optimize every area of their life)
- How You Can Maximize Impact as a Software Engineer (Audience: Engineers looking to do more through their career)
- How Software Engineers Can Save Lives (Audience: Engineers interested in doing important work)
- Top 10 Software Engineers Who Are Giving Back (Audience: Engineers aspiring to be like their respected contemporaries)
While I employed some hooks with these titles, I’m shaping through the lens of a software engineer presumed hopes, interests, issues, etc. — not just the shared persona. You can pull this out further and see how each title could then fulfill on the promise of its premise and, ultimately, align with the second question: “What does the piece hope to accomplish?”
All of that said, the content that might result from a framework like this could have its own downside risks:
- Disingenuous writing: Tailoring too much for an audience and/or applying marketing best practices (hooks, keywords, SEO , etc.) has the potential to compromise core messaging.
- Low fidelity: Due to its often "snackable" nature, viral/shareable content can lack important nuance.
- Unrepresentative associations: A successful article could be shared by the unengaged for purposes such as virtual signaling, risking the reputation of the EA community and/or appropriation of EA-related indicators e.g. #effectivealtruism.
You mention some of these risks in your post, so perhaps additional guidelines should be considered when pursuing external targeted movement building.
All of that said. I think professional outreach + meaningful content has strong potential to reach and activate people.
What EA projects could grow to become megaprojects, eventually spending $100m per year?
Educate, empower, and enable diverse talent to work on solutions for the world’s biggest issues.
What is it?
A remote school offering tuition-free education and job placement for vital roles (data scientist, researcher, engineer, etc.) in areas of crucial need (climate, economics, healthcare, etc.).
- Identify important areas where key talent is lacking.
- Establish tuition-free online school led by top thinkers.
- Dispense task-oriented knowledge in short period of time.
- Create post-graduation job placement program for sectors in need.
- Remove barriers to higher education.
- Create access to opportunities, regardless of location, language, background, etc.
- Lift people out of poverty.
- Funnel talent into organizations and projects that need the most support.
- Solve range of vital issues.
- Grow pool of world problem solvers.
- Inspire next generation of doers and founders.
- Open up to more students, more languages, more education levels, more areas of speciality.
- Create accelerator program to invest in alum startups.
Two things that scale well are knowledge and technology. So, rather than attempt to choose a single area of focus, create a megaproject that both democratizes pursuits and crowdsources solutions. This has the potential to produce a network effect on a variety of problems, while removing hierarchal barriers. Scaling continues until new talent declines to join and/or roles disappear, or problems are solved (due to lack of new focus areas and/or some yet-to-be realized superior option i.e. ML/AI).