Took a Different Direction With My Blog

Hi everyone. It’s been a few months since I started blogging again. I’ve enjoyed getting back into the swing of writing and providing content that would be valuable to readers. Though I don’t have much content already posted here, it’s because of the different direction I needed to take.

Before I had launched this blog along with my YouTube channel. I hadn’t done much YouTubing in the past, but decided to give it a try. My focus wasn’t clear on what I wanted to share through YouTube and blogging, as I wanted to provide content in the areas of business, real estate, gaming, voice over, acting, lifestyle, modeling, etc. Needless to say, I got burnt out trying to do everything. I decided to give YouTube a break to focus mainly on blogging. Should I come back to making videos, it’ll be when I have better resources and help to create compelling content.

I narrowed my focus, taking acting, modeling, voice over, gaming, and lifestyle out of the equation. My focus now is in business and real estate, though a majority of my posts in the beginning will be related to business, as I’m still fairly new to real estate and have to build up my experience there. In my blog posts I hope to inspire and motivate readers to take action in accomplishing their dreams, as that is what I’m doing myself. At the same time, I hope to share some advice on how to run a business and include some of my experiences in conducting business activities that generate profits.

So here’s to new beginnings. Hopefully if you’re reading this, you’ll stay to be inspired and take part in this great journey of achieving success. It is possible if you really want it to come to reality.

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What Does Grand Theft Auto V’s Success Mean for a Sequel?

It’s not common for companies to eventually close ongoing support for a product or service in order to shift focus on a better iteration. This is how companies can generate profits while deviating from wasting funds and resources on something that has reached the end of its lifecycle. If a product isn’t selling as much, or isn’t selling at all, it’s time to pull the plug. But what about if a product has maintained vastly impressive sales numbers 4-5 years after its release?

Take Grand Theft Auto V for example. This widely popular sandbox game, which reportedly had a development and marketing budget of $265 million, has far exceeded expectations of even Rockstar’s parent company Take-Two Interactive. The game generated $1 billion in sales in just a few days after its release back in September of 2013. Pretty impressive when the game’s online component, Grand Theft Auto Online, wasn’t even released yet. As of the end of May 2017, total sales have reached 80 million copies. It continues to be within the top 10 selling games week after week. However, it’s now the end of August, and so sales of the fifth installment have definitely exceeded the 80 million mark.

Add to the fact that Grand Theft Auto Online has helped the company rack in millions more from its micro-transactions, and it is no wonder Take-Two have decided to allow Rockstar to continue supporting the online portion of the game. According to GameSpot, Grand Theft Auto Online saw the highest recurrent consumer spending in its first fiscal quarter of 2018 (which ended June 30, 2017) in the game’s history. It contributed to the net sales of $418.2 million Take-Two generated for that quarter. There’s no figure on how much in total consumers have spent real world money on the online component of Grand Theft Auto V, but if it’s generating millions for the company, support will be ongoing.

So what does this mean for a potential sequel of the game? It’s hard to tell, as the only thing that was hinted by Rockstar was that developing a game starts with an idea. So if they’re in development of a Grand Theft Auto VI, they’d be drumming up ideas on what kind of story to tell, the type of characters to be included, and the ideal location of the game. There could be several hundred ideas on the board before the team makes a concrete choice before they work on the script. Add to the fact that they are also trying to meet a second quarter of 2018 release deadline of Red Dead Redemption 2, and the hopes of seeing a new Grand Theft Auto seems more far fetched.

Continued Grand Theft Auto Online Support

Rockstar has provided massive support for Grand Theft Auto Online since it went live a month after the game’s release. The single player component of the game already had a immense level of content that was worth the $60 price tag in itself. Rockstar has long been a innovator of compelling storylines in a sandbox world. Though given the success of the online components of Grand Theft Auto IV and Red Dead Redemption, they saw a lot of potential in the online space.

By adding continuous updates to Grand Theft Auto Online, they have added new weapons, missions, multiplayer modes, vehicles, luxury items, and new ways to generate virtual profits, thus giving gamers new and exciting ways to play. By also bringing the hammer down on cheaters, patching out bugs and glitches, and keeping the money making system stable, it’s no wonder why the online suite is nothing like it was at the beginning. If anything, it’s better than ever.

Controversy Sells When Used Right

What is one way that you can get your product in the front of the eyes of millions of potential customers? One way, only if used right, is through controversy. Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto games have moments in them that are controversial. They’ve been on the receiving end of lawsuits for years as a result, including one were Lindsay Lohan sued them for having a female character in the game whose face allegedly resembled hers. Despite such setbacks, the controversial elements in their games have been the driving force of their huge profits. Much of what you can do in Grand Theft Auto V is controversial, from robbing banks, conducting prison breaks, trafficking cocaine, and exporting stolen luxury vehicles. A lot of people who play would never do those things in real life, but love to immerse themselves in this virtual world of crime to escape from reality.

Conclusion

Let’s face it, Grand Theft Auto V is selling incredibly well still, and the online portion continues to generate revenue due to its micro-transaction system. If recurrent-consumer spending on the game is higher than it’s ever been, then Take-Two has no reason to push Rockstar to create Grand Theft Auto VI. This is sad news for fans who want to dive into a fresh new sandbox world of the series. But at the end of the day, Rockstar is a business. A business diverts their energy and resources into what is working well for them, and ditches the things that aren’t meeting expectations. Perhaps on the day where the game starts showing its age, the player base starts dying down, and sales start to drop, we’ll finally see the sixth iteration of this widely popular franchise.

 

Three Ways You Can Become a Great Leader Like Jon Snow

Whether you have watched the popular series Game of Thrones or not, you might have heard of Jon Snow. If not, then you should know he’s a fan favorite of the show due to his honesty and humble personality. To be honest, he had a humble beginning. We first knew Jon Snow as the “Bastard Son” of Ned Stark (RIP to him) who joined a military group called the Night’s Watch, serving as a mere grunt to later becoming the “King of the North.”

Jon Snow’s title, though not too important to him, is a position well deserved, as he possesses the necessary qualities to lead, even if he doesn’t listen to his younger sister Sansa Stark from time to time. But all in all, I couldn’t think of a better person to lead the North in the fight against the White Walkers (Game of Thrones’ undead warriors), let alone lead the people to a better way of living.

A few of Jon Snow’s qualities he possesses can be applied to business, or your career in whatever you’re pursuing, whether it’s acting, modeling, philanthropy, or even the military. As you achieve success, there will come a time where you will have to lead a team of your own, and those people will depend on you to help guide them. So here are a few things Jon Snow did in order to become an effective leader:

He Persuaded His Former Enemies to Become Allies

When Jon Snow joined the Night’s Watch, he swore a oath to protect “The Wall” and the North against its foreign enemies, which included the Wildlings. After a fierce battle against them in season four, he reached out and pledged for peace with them. Of course, this was met with resistance among the Wildlings and his Night’s Watch comrades. But Jon Snow knew it was necessary. Sometimes, extraordinary circumstances calls for extraordinary measures. Ultimately, standing by his word that there was a far greater threat is what convinced the two former enemies to align together. Not a easy feat when the two factions had previously been at war against each other for several years.

He Strengthened his Allegiance With the Wildlings

It was one thing getting the new Wilding leader Tormund Giantsbane to side with the Night’s Watch, it was another to get all the rest of them to fully support Jon Snow’s vision. For a partnership to fully work, you have to work hard to nurture the relationship, and actually deliver on your promise. That is what Jon Snow did, when he helped the Wildings leave Hardhome to go south of “The Wall” so they could migrate there, even though fleeing Hardhome costed the lives of some during the White Walkers’ invasion. This also meant that the Night’s Watch would now treat the Wildings like a equal ally, and not as savages. So far, their allegiance has been fruitful, as they managed to eliminate a fierce rival, the Boltons, off the drawing board.

He Proved That the Threat Was Real

Sometimes people aren’t easily convinced off of just words. In this case you have to show others that what you’re saying is the real deal, and that they should get on board. Jon Snow did just that, first when he proved to the Wildings of the White Walker threat, and second when he showed Daenerys Targaryen at the Dragonstone cave of the markings left by the Children of the Forest (another species of living beings). The markings signified that the Children of the Forest and the First Men (human beings) must come together to defeat their “Common Enemy,” which were the Walkers. Daenerys was not convinced that they even existed. On top of that, she had her own agenda which was having Jon bend the knee, take the Iron Throne from Cersei Lannister, and rule the Seven Kingdoms. But that’s part of life. Everyone has something that they’re trying to achieve, and so helping one another out can be a great solution if you first show how working together can be a mutually beneficial.

Conclusion

These qualities are what has helped Jon Snow become a great leader, a worthy King of The North, and a beloved character of the series. In the three elements I shared of his rightful doing, he used the art of persuasion to convince the Wildings to work together, he nurtured their partnership, and he showed the reason why aligning with him was at upmost importance. And he did all of this while staying consistent, treating everyone fairly, and remaining humble. These are qualities that a leader should have. If you ever plan to operate your own business, become a sports athlete, or become a famous movie star, you’ll need to learn how to work with others, as well as learn how to lead.

 

How Cersei and Daenerys’ War Relates to Dealing With Loss

We’re midway into season 7 of Game of Thrones, one of the most popular shows on television. For those watching, you know the pacing of the show has picked up more so than usual. Where we still have a lot of scenes that are focus on character and plot development, other scenes are in relations to the war itself. And man, has it been a gruesome one.

With Cersei Lannister of King’s Landing drawing first blood, Daenerys Targaryen dealt with the aftermath of losing key allies, but her retaliation has led to Cersei losing a lot of her soldiers. It is war after all, and so casualties are expected. But if you look at it from a different perspective, there are a few key reasons why suffering losses such as what these two have dealt with can relate to what anyone can lose when pursuing their dreams. Here are those key reasons:

Being on Top Involves Taking Risks

You can choose a life where you can live comfortably, work a 9 to 5, and go home daily only to rinse and repeat. It’s this type of repetition that can lead to boredom overtime. Or, choosing the path of entrepreneurship, becoming a singer, pursuing acting, or becoming a successful influencer can give you a wealth of options should you make it to the top. However, pursuing your dreams means taking a risk. Anywhere in your journey to stardom, you could lose a lot money as well as time, sometimes because of the people who come against you.

Look at Daenerys and how she built an empire out of nothing, but is now in the biggest fight of her life, to take the Iron Throne from Cersei. One of her allies she lost in the ongoing war, the Tyrells, had massive wealth and food, which the Lannisters seized in a calculated invasion to pay off their own debt. But this is a loss that one can expect when taking such a risk to become the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms.

Others Will Always Try to Bring You Down

You don’t owe the world anything, but it may seem like the world wants to see you fail. Through any part of your journey, when someone sees your potential, or has seen your achievements, they may want a piece of it for themselves, even if it means taking you down. That is the case with Cersei. Though she’s done some cruel things, such as blow up the Sept of Baelor to obliterate the Sparrows and Tyrells, she’s lost all of her children and her father.

Now that she’s the ruler of the Seven Kingdoms, she has fierce competition, Daenerys, who believes she has the right to claim the Iron Throne. And although her latest attack on the Lannister army gave her a much needed victory, Cersei did receive the gold her army took from the Tyrells to pay off her debt. And although much of her army was ravaged, she still may have a trick or two up her sleeve that she could use against the Targaryen rival. In business, sometimes you will deal with loss due to competition, so it’s up to you on how you handle it, as it could lead to gaining more than what you lost.

You Get Hit With Something You Never Expected

Achieving your dreams is never easy. If it was easy to build a multi-million dollar company, be a fierce pop star like Beyonce, or be the Mother of Dragons like Daenerys, then everyone would do it. During your path to success, problems will occur, and some may have a big impact on your progress. Unfortunately, problems always seem to turn up unexpectedly, costing you time, money, and/or even possibly key people who once supported you.

In Daenerys’ case, she got hit with an unexpected blow. With Cersei’s alliance to Euron Greyjoy, house Dorne and most of the Greyjoys who supported Yara and Theon are gone, and their naval fleet crippled. The Tarly house siding with the Lannisters, along with their smart decision to attack Highgarden, has led to Daenerys losing the Tyrell alliance, and the valuable gold and food. These are heavy losses for her, and unfortunately, she never expected those situations to play out the way they did. You can have a in depth plan that you’re very confident in, and you might see results at the beginning. But then extraordinary circumstances take place that almost derails your progress.

Conclusion

Though a lot I’ve shared has been in relations to Game of Thrones, Cersei and Daenerys’ conflict has similarities to what you may deal with when working to achieve success. Though you won’t be taking a army to war (I hope not), you will face opposition and circumstances that are out of your control. Once you make it to the spotlight, or acquire some fortunes, you become a target. It’s human nature for some people who want to see you fail, and may even orchestrate a plan for your demise. But if you’re truly in it for the long haul, then you’ll know how to deal with opposition, and handle it accordingly. Just don’t burn a ton of people in the process.

 

3 Ways to Build a Empire Like Daenerys Targaryen

If you’ve watched a lot of Game of Thrones like I have, then you’re already familiar with who Daenerys Targaryen is. After all, she holds many titles, including the “Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea,” the “Breaker of Chains,” and her most popular one, the “Mother of Dragons.” For those who don’t know who she is, let’s just say she’s a fierce leader of a couple of massive armies and a few large dragons, with the goal to conquer the land of Westeros (the show’s world).

Though it sounds like Daenerys has it all, it didn’t start that way for her. In the beginning, she was a slave that was traded by her brother Viserys Targargen to a Drothraki (one of the show’s factions) prince named Khal Drogo, in a attempt to receive an army so he could rule Westeros. Fast forward to season seven, here are a list of her biggest accomplishments:

  • She abolished slavery, setting the people of multiple large cities free from slavers
  • She amassed two large armies to fight for her cause
  • She constructed a loyal counsel who supports her vision
  • She brought peace and order to a slave induced city

Not bad for someone who started out as a slave herself right? But it wasn’t a easy road for Daenerys. She dealt with resistance, betrayal, and multiple attempts on her life. Yet through it all, she built a empire out of nothing, while standing as one of the strongest characters on the show.

Even though Daenerys is a TV show character, the journey she took to get to the top is not different from yours. That said, here are some ways she became the “Protector of the Realm:”

She Inspired Others With Her Message

Daenerys wanted to make it clear to everyone that her actions were for the good of the people. For one, being a traded as a slave herself, she couldn’t bare to live in a world where people had to serve masters against their will, thus her to reason for getting rid of the practice. More importantly, with her message of being the Mother of Dragons and the rightful ruler of Westeros spread through the realm, she used that to negotiate terms, influence others to support her cause, and punish those who went against her belief of a better world.

She Set Objectives That Supports Her Goal

Daenerys’ main goal is to sit on the Iron Throne and rule Westeros, but to get there has been easier said than done. Though her end goal is still up in the air, she has done a lot in the process. One of the armies Daenerys acquired, the Unsullied, involved her negotiating the trade of one of her dragons, in which she in turn burned the leader and all of the slavers of Astapor. She influenced a man named Darrio Naharis to bring 2,000 mercenaries called the Second Sons by her side to take another city, called Yunkai, from slavers.

That same man, along with her armies, helped take over yet another city called Mereen, the city where she later brought peace and order for (with help of her supporters of course). Then later in the series, she negotiated with Theon and Yara Greyjoy to acquire ships to go to Westeros, and other houses allied with her in the process. All of this took time, intelligence, and perseverance in order to prepare for her biggest goal yet.

She Surrounded Herself With the Right People

To accomplish such a feature like acquiring the Iron Throne, let alone ruling a entire continent, cannot be done by one’s self. Daenerys knew that. It’s easier to build a empire when you have people who believe in you. Daenerys first had to prove that she was worth following, so she got unwavering support from Khal Drogo, and the Dothraki soon followed. With her proving that she was a true Targaryen by not being burnt by flames, more people followed her. Then even more people followed her after successfully freeing slaves and taking out evil monarchs. This, and other factors, brought in new supporters, including key people like Sir Barristan Selmy, Tyrion Lannister, Missandei, Varys, Melisandre, and now Jon Snow. With these supporters, and their expertise in diplomacy, politics, and military tactics, Daenerys has been able to grow in power and influence, while being a serious contender for the Iron Throne.

Conclusion

So now you know a few things that helped Daenerys Targaryen to build her empire after starting out with nothing. However, all of this wouldn’t have been possible if she wasn’t confident in her own ability to lead, or if her actions didn’t bring forth positive change for others. With that, she changed her entire situation, and so can you. Perhaps you’re working on building your own empire with limited capital and no network. Now you have this article to help motivate you to also get out there and take action. You might not become the Mother of Dragons, or the Breaker of Chains, but you can become a star of your own brand, or a owner of your own multi million dollar corporation.

 

3 Ways How Sony’s Playstation 4 Pro Launch Has Helped Their Brand

I’ve been a gamer since I was five years old. In fact, I’d written a post previously on my passion for video games, as well as a favorite game of mine that I’m playing now. In addition, I’ve been a Playstation fan since Son’y very first system. The reason isn’t only because of the good quality systems they make, but also because of the large variety of first party exclusive games they bring to their loyal customers. They’re passionate about making their fans happy, which is something I admire.

According to a recent post on IGN, Playstation 4 sales have exceeded 60 million. That’s an impressive number. The Playstation 4 is already on par to exceed the lifetime sales of the Playstation 3, which sits at above 83 million within its 10 1/2 year lifecycle. It still has a ways to go to reach the Playstation 2, which has 155 million lifetime sales, but I’m confident they’ll exceed 100 million sales for sure. Although the software is what is mainly benefiting Sony profitability wise, which stands at 487.8 million as of Jun 11th, they are still making money off of the sales of their systems.

That also holds true with their Playstation 4 Pro, which was released back in November 2016, and will have been on the market for a year once Microsoft’s Xbox One X arrives this Fall. So how was Sony’s Playstation 4 Pro launch such a great idea. Here’s a few reasons why:

They Knew That Timing Was Key

With there being a shift into 4K, and with the introduction of VR last year, Sony believed that releasing a gaming system that had the performance to meet the needs of a average consumer (or an existing Playstation 4 owner) that has a 4K TV would mean profitability for them in the long run. 4K TVs have gotten less expensive, and there’s been a demand for better graphics and performance in games.

And although technically Sony’s Playstation 4 Pro doesn’t bring true native 4K at 60 frames per second to every game, a lot of the games that have gotten the graphical update can come close to it. The average consumer will have a hard time telling the difference between upscaled 4K and native 4K, but will still enjoy how games look and play, which is something Sony nailed down.

Them releasing a more powerful iteration of the Playstation 4 has given them a one year head start over Microsoft, and has given them a huge edge in console dominance as a result.

To Maintain a Reasonable Price Point

When the Playstation 3 launched in 2006, it went for a staggering $600 for the 20GB model, which turned off a lot of consumers and directed them to purchase a Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii instead. But Sony long learned their lesson when they released the first Playstation 4 at $400. It was a very reasonable price for a new console. Sony wanted to make sure to maintain such a price point with the Playstation 4 Pro. And thus, new adapters and existing Playstation 4 owners have purchased the system without so much regard about if it’s worth the price.

Quality Games Over Pure Performance

Sony knew that to maintain the integrity of their brand, while keeping gamers happy, they would have to make a couple of compromises in order to sell the Playstation 4 Pro at a reasonable price to make profits. Thus, for one 4K Blu-Ray DVD playback was excluded, and they went for small processing, graphical, and RAM performance improvements. This was the only way they could sell their new system at $400.

However, no compromises have been made in the gaming sector. Sony has continued to bring the focus on the one thing that keeps consumers happy and loyal to their brand, the games. And this year, they have more games than ever. Sony’s focus to keep their system a gaming machine and not just a very powerful system that can do it all has helped the Playstation 4 Pro to be the system of choice for consumers of all ages and backgrounds.

Conclusion

Sony learned from their mistakes with the Playstation 3, and it shows with their amazing execution with branding and selling the Playstation 4 this generation. From a business and consumer standpoint, them releasing the Playstation 4 Pro during the Fall last year, one year ahead of the upcoming Xbox One X, made a whole lot of since.

I wanted to write this post to give you a perspective on some of the choices you must make when running a business, while being able to offer a product and having good execution with timing, pricing, and whom you’re targeting. Along the way, you have to make some compromises. You’re not going to be able to satisfy everyone. But as long as you make your product and message compelling enough, you’ll build your own loyal customer base.