Million Dollar Weekend by Noah Kagan: Summary & Notes

Rating: 8/10

Available at: Amazon

Related: The 4-Hour Workweek, How to Get Rich


I’ve followed Noah Kagan for a long time, back to his growth blogging days when he was working on growing the financial tool Mint. He’s long provided open, honest growth marketing advice.

His book is a short read, highly actionable, and shares many themes with The 4-Hour Workweek, which is the book I attribute to getting me into entrepreneurship.

Highly recommend for anyone who is interested in starting their own business. Follow the template in the book and you’ll be off to a great start!

You can also get the first chapter and the resources for the book for free here.


  • The simple Million Dollar Weekend process: find a problem people are having that you can solve; craft an irresistible solution that has million-dollar plus potential backed by market research; spend zero money to validate whether your idea is real or not by preselling before you build it.
  • Two main fears derail people starting businesses: fear of starting and fear of asking.
  • Everything you do should be viewed as an experiment, and you should aim to do as many as possible.
  • Business is just a never-ending cycle of starting and trying new things, asking whether people will pay for those things, and then trying it again based on what you’ve learned.
  • Use the motto NOW, Not How.
  • Give yourself early motivation by writing down your Freedom Number: the short-term monthly revenue goal you’re aiming for.
  • Aim to get rejected: those that are willing to get rejected will eventually get what they want.
  • Be persistent: figure out what rejections are actually “not now” and why not.
  • Follow up: you’re often likely to get your yes on the second or third try.
  • Selling is helping: if you believe your product improves the lives of your customers, sales is just education. You’re helping people out.
  • Ask for 10 percent off next time you buy a coffee to practice getting over your fear of asking.
  • Customers don’t care about your ideas; they care about whether you can solve their problems.
  • You need to know: who you are selling to, what problem you’re solving, and where they are.
  • Use people in your own orbit: friends, colleagues, communities, etc. to find your first customers.
  • You need to think about your own unhappiness and to think of solutions for you to sell.

Four different places to find ideas:

  1. Solve your own problems: things that irritate you, have been on your to-do list, etc.
  2. Bestsellers: think about products that already sell a ton and think about accessories you could sell, or services you could sell (like teaching how to use the product)
  3. Marketplaces: look on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, completed listings on eBay, etc. for products people are looking to buy
  4. Search engine queries: try searching for questions on, using Google Trends, or r/SomebodyMakeThis on Reddit for ideas.

One-Minute Business Model

  • Is the market dying, flat, or growing? You want flat or growing. Use Google Trends to see how it’s trending.
  • Is this a million-dollar opportunity? Use Facebook Ads to determine the size of the market (you can just see how many fit your audience, you don’t have to buy), then estimate the profit you will make per customer. That’s your potential opportunity.
  • Think about the dials you can use to affect revenue: average order value, frequency, price point, customer type, product line, and add-on services.


  • Find three customers in 48 hours who will give you money for your idea.

Three Methods to Validate

  1. Direct preselling: use your network and friends, and get them to preorder.
  2. Marketplaces: list a virtual product on marketplace sites to test products.
  3. Landing pages: set up a landing page and buy some ads to send traffic to those pages.

Notes on Preselling

  • Validating can follow a 3-step process: listen, option, transitions.
  • Listen: you want customers to talk about their problem: What’s the most frustrating thing currently going on? How would having X make your life better? What do you think that X should cost?
  • Option: now present some solutions, and see which excites them most.
  • Transition: time to transition to sell: Price + Benefit + Time should be how you form an offer sentence (ex: For $50, I’ll teach you how to write better in 1 hour).
  • If you get rejected while validating, remember to learn. Ask questions like: Why not? Who is one person you know who would really like this? What would make this a no-brainer for you? What would you pay for that?


  • Building a community is very important in business, and you create one by adding value without expectation. People also want to follow other people who are genuine.
  • You should have a unique angle: who you are, why people should listen, what you’re passionate about and what you will do for people.
  • Choose your platform carefully; it needs to be something that fits with who you are and who you’re targeting.
  • Try and deliver content that follows outcome you’ll deliver + target market.
  • Aim to be the guide, not the guru. People don’t want to be lectured, they want to tag along. Document what YOU do, and you become relatable, which is what audiences long for.


  • Set up a landing page, give something away for free (a lead magnet), and then start to use your content to add emails to your list. This is where you’ll make your money.
  • When you’re starting out, engage with every one of your followers.
  • The Law of 100: commit to doing 100 emails, posts, or whatever action will move you closer to your goal.


  • Five questions to create a marketing plan: What is your one goal for the year? Who exactly is your customer and where can you find them? What is one marketing activity you can double down on? How can you delight your first 100 customers? If you HAD to double your business with no money in thirty days, what would you do?
  • Set a single, focused goal, create a list of marketing experiments, double down on what works, and then eliminate what doesn’t.
  • Think about how you could double your business if you couldn’t get any new customers; this will help you think about how you can overdeliver.

Dream Year

  • The first step to getting everything you want is allowing yourself to want it, and facing the fears necessary to get it.
  • Write out your dream year, and then take those and turn them into your goals.
  • Then build your calendar with color codes related to those goals. Show me your calendar and I’ll show you what’s most important to you.

Never Entrepreneur Alone

  • Get an accountability buddy: someone who will ensure you stick with your goals week-to-week.
  • Target Prefluencers: try and connect with ambitious people BEFORE they make it.
  • Build your VIP network with referrals: every time you meet someone new, follow up and ask them to refer you to someone else.

Start Again

  • Life is shaped by the willingness to face fears. Achieving dreams comes down to one question: how many times are you willing to get back up after falling down? Experiment, fail, try again until you succeed.
  • Start. And then start again.

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