Mar 12, 2024

Trustless Media founder Zach Guzman joins "First Mover" to discuss the launch of "Best Dish Ever," a Web3 project focusing on the restaurant scene in New York.

Video transcript

Experiencing cities and culture through food is one of my absolute passions. This next project takes you inside New York's food scene with a web three twist joining first mover now is trust media founder Zach Guzman to tell us about some delicious developments and what he's been working on. Zach. What's up? Hey Jen. Thank you so much for having me on. Um That was a hell of an intro actually and I'm excited to chat about it with you. Thank you. I do have to make a disclosure. I am a coinage media network NFT holder. And so there is that disclosure, but let's talk about this project now. Yeah, it's the second one to come from us at trust list, which again was a start up built on this, this whole idea of what media looks like in the era of web three, this idea of a creator building something that their fans and you know, people who are in that content area can co own with them and coiners crypto news. And now we're excited to expand into food and the culinary excitement built around not just discoverability but rewards and the network effects that you can finally unlock here in the food space. Uh And we've seen experiments like that in the web two area around reservations, reward points, Blackbird and what they've been building. But what we're trying to do is a mix of content, really great content. By the way, some really good hosts, food network stars and people who love food in New York to discover and unlock rewards. And all these restaurants with best is che built on avalanche. So we're, we're throwing basically a lot of different things into this experiment, Jen. But uh it's exciting to finally be ready to launch and get this in front of foodies all around the five boroughs. OK. How do you go from crypto news to full on food? It's a good question and maybe not as crazy as it sounds because if you think about what we're trying to do the model scales regardless of what content niche you're in, it could be sports, could be food, could be crypto news. But this idea of breaking down the wall between people who create content and the people who enjoy that content is something that I think will work no matter which corner of the internet you're in. And we've already seen that with coinage in, in crypto news. Just this idea that, you know, people statically and web two have followed creators for forever and you saw it on TV, you saw it with radio. It's just the next evolution of where I think media can go when you start to lean into the network effects of turning a static subscriber, someone who just views content into someone who lives it and can help open doors. Uh because that's kind of what web three is all about. And so when we're applying it in the food space with best dish ever, it's exciting because we've been working with again, some of the, these huge names, the food network, restaurateurs, James Beard award winners, uh and all these people know each other. It's a very small food network in New York, but it's kind of really the people at the top of the game. When you start working with them, you can start unlocking all kinds of things, whether it's, you know, exclusive chef tastings, uh chef tables, discounts at some of the best restaurants. And so we're starting very slow, you know, we're starting with little tiny things including discounts at some of the top restaurants as voted on by our members in our community. So it's, it's an experiment, Jen, it's kind of like American Idol meets diners. Drive ins and dives because I don't know about you. But I love watching food content, but I love eating even more. And so if there's a way we can bring some of those experiences IRL, then I think we've done our job, the resident foodie here who loves to explore restaurants in New York City. How does this work for me? Yeah. So like I was saying, it's, it's all about kind of trying to apply some of those network effects in real life. So the way the best dish ever works is very similar to what we've done at coin edge. There are tiers of membership. The base tier is just unlocking our content to watch our episodes and vote on where we should go next. So it's again, kind of a, you know, experiential way to produce content is you tell us where our huge hosts and influencers should go next. And that's kind of one tier to unlock and then the other tiers are really, you know, all about the experiences. So unlocking these real world events where you can unlock discounts at the restaurants we cover as well as experiences. And then to your question on how does this relate what you're trying to do with web through media? Our top tier actually gets to co own the brand as we scale an audience. So they do get the ticket to join into our Dow Cooper. Best ever is also a Colorado Dow Co op uh which will enable people to unlock dividends as the show continues to grow as the brand grows. Which again is I think kind of this cool ownership piece that is only enabled by web three. Um and it's, it's a really cool way to apply the ability to not just kind of subscribe and enjoy the content, but then unlock the upside as we continue to grow? OK. And what do you think this means for the future of media, the future of how folks consume media and interact with creators? I think we're at the very beginning phases of this more engaged kind of interaction with the content we consume and the creators we interact with. What do you think this means for the future of media and like 1015 years from now? Am I gonna be like right there in it with the content that I like to consume, helping create some um you know, earning points and rewards by consuming others and then just staying like a static viewer on, on other content. Yeah, I think again, I think you know what we three unlocks is this flexibility to let anyone do what they want to do and having this kind of spectrum of how involved do you want to be? And you know, people talk so much about the 1000 fan theory and what web two really enabled for that, right? When you have Kickstarter or Patreon, you don't need to necessarily be a massive star to be a full time content creator anymore in that evolution of the internet. But now what happens when you add another piece to it? And what web three unlocks I think is this ability to really lean into the fans you've already built. And so with the content creators we're working with, you know, some are huge food network stars but others are just kind of getting their start. And all we did was we asked them, hey, look, you're already an established content creator in this niche. You love food. Your fans love the way you cover food. If you could go anywhere and tell anyone about the best dish ever, where should we go? And we just went around and shot with them. And so it was kind of a very organic experiment to get off the ground. And I think that that is what the future of media looks like is. You don't need to be a massive star. You know, Instagram tiktok enabled the distribution rails for anyone to kind of get the cold start problem solved. But what web three does is it pours gasoline on the 1000 fan theory by letting you lean into your most engaged fans, turning a passive viewer into a quote unquote supporter on a 10 X scale. You know, you can pay seven bucks and just unlock content or you can support the creator and invest and bet on them becoming a star. And I think that's kind of what this model unlocks is. It's, it's really letting creators lean into their early start. And as what we've seen in building these out it 10 X is engagement in a way that you convert a passive viewer into a co-owner, they become a huge fan, they want to support the content and they want to experiment with you. And I think that kind of, you know, that peek behind the curtain is what's really cool here. And that really wasn't possible until you established this idea of Daws. Like you said, people coming together to co fund things that probably otherwise wouldn't have happened, shared out a constitution. The idea of $45 million being raised in a matter of days to go buy a replica constitution like a crazy time we've lived through. You know, it's, it's kind of crazy but like, what can you do when you maybe chase more established and, and I don't want to say that that was crazy, but more realistic business ideas in the content space. And I think that's kind of, you know, what, we're trying to explore any reluctance from the creators who are involved in this project when it came to the Web Three Tech. Yeah, I think there's been a lot of pushback from everybody who is kind of caught in that in between, right? You got some people on the web three side saying don't abstract away of the Blockchain or the idea of NFTS. But frankly, you know, NFTS don't necessarily have the best rap. Uh And so, you know, sometimes there are business decisions to be made and consumer decisions to be made to maybe say, look, this is a membership pass, not an NFT. And again, for where we come from, there are differences in terms of being a dow and a Cooper and, and kind of how you set this up. But the creators themselves, all they really care about is the content and going out and shooting really good places and unlocking and, and letting people know about really good restaurants. And so, you know, that's what they care about and arguably that's what any viewer or any consumer or any person who comes to best of she is gonna be caring about too. Um And if you want to be a Web three user who's buying an NFT because you understand the tech and you know what avalanche is and you know how to buy on avalanche, like great, we'll let you do that too. So I think Web Three right now is really in this, in the space of just kind of putting the product in front of a consumer, the way that they would interact with it, right? You just wanna let them know that, forget about the Blockchain, forget about NFTS. Here's what the project does and here's why you want to be involved. And I think that that's kind of where every project is now and the industry has come a long way since the first NFTS gen. I mean, you've seen it. It's like you don't need that anymore. You can buy things with a credit card and anyone who comes to Best Ache is gonna be able to do exactly that. So it's meet the consumer where they're at in the Web three Journey and I think that that's kind of where the space is moving now, simplicity and convenience at its best. I love it, Zach. Thank you so much for joining first mover and congratulations on the launch. Thanks Jen. I'm excited. Yeah, and shout out to everyone we work with to get best of Cheever off the ground. You know, it's, it's exciting and everyone can go to Best Ofe dot NYC to join, to start watching the content and find the very best restaurants in New York City with us. But thank you very much for having me on.

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