April 7, 2023

Friday Forum is an All Hands meeting for the Levels team, where they discuss their progress and traction each week.


Josh Clemente (00:00):

All right. Friday Forum, April 7th, 2023. Welcome. So quick reminder of what this is all about. Forum is our weekly sync time. Our goal is to celebrate achievements across the various functions inside of levels, hear directly from members and partners. Talk about our culture, get on the same level. Some of this can be a bit out of sight, out of mind because we’re all remote and asynchronous, so this is our sync time. It’s not the deep business analytics meeting and it’s not the main social connection for us. This week. Big news is the Beta One launch. So this is our first CGM optional experience that was really purpose built into the app. The alpha was very piecemeal and now Beta One is the first cohesive experience. Engagement is looking good. It’s very early. Obviously we launched on the third, so we just have a few days of data, but we’re going to be tracking really closely and it’s super exciting. Huge shout out to the whole team for getting to this point.


Alpha two engagements, so that was the Alpha came obviously before the Beta. The engagement was really good. It was above target all the way to the end of Alpha two, so looking good gives us some better confidence that Beta One, these early engagement numbers are trustworthy. We also rolled out trends 1.1 to 5% of our members, so that was another big push. And leading into growth stuff. So March, just looking at net new members, we had 7.7% month-over-month increase in net new members. Now this is not revenue or recognized revenue, this is a different metric, but it is interesting and quarter over quarter, I just wanted to highlight again, these are net numbers, not recognized revenue, but quarter over quarter member revenue was up 18%. So this is just to put in context, there’s a lot of confusion and sometimes some complication around understanding what the various gap revenue metrics mean. But just looking at members and members times the revenue they bring in is a good indicator of what’s going on behind the scenes.


Partner conversions was up 37%. Huge shout out of course to Jackie for continuing to just really drive home some super solid partners in making sure that we’re getting good value from that. Sign up conversion rate, due to all of the experimentation we’ve been doing, has been overall up about 1.8x, almost 200% increases on sign up conversion rates over the past few months as we’ve been working on iterating. We’ve had a ton of A/B tests and our hypotheses have been a 100% correct so far on those A/B tests. So the goal is to have an assumption, test it against a control and then see whether you’re right or not. So far, all of those have been on the money, which is obviously a huge indication of team quality, making good choices. Stuff that we’re working on. So we’re shipping the checkout step bar to show where someone is in the checkout flow more concretely.


A money back guarantee is being added so people can really understand what we’ve always been doing. We have given people a really exceptional refund or money back guarantee since the beginning, but we don’t really talk about it. So we’re surfacing that more, clear pricing update based on member feedback, testing how it works videos. Let’s see that here. And generally shaping referrals version one for a May 10th-ish launch. Okay. This month, we had record monthly website visitors. We’re at over 280,000 unique website visitors. We also had a huge month, the biggest by far on YouTube, so you can see this is the YouTube curve of growth. We hit almost 800,000 or I guess over 700,000 YouTube views this month, which is really wild. Tons of guides content was shipped, the food guide for Beta One was shipped. We had articles out, really great articles on fasted exercise and GLP-1 agonists, you’ve probably heard of these.


Ozempic, Wegovy, which is a really important article. We pushed out a Levels scores article, which describes the zone and meal scores. And then we have locked in the number one site or the number one slot on Google for zone two exercise. Which is awesome. That’s a very hot topic right now and Levels owns that, which is, huge shout out to be to the editorial team. Beta One shipped without major issues on the end side, so tracking a few small bugs, but nothing major, which is just a big win. The Beta two is our focus now and we’re building multi-part video stories. So, smaller bite-sized clips that people, that our guides can use to engage with our members. We’re also building a synthetic glucose curve. This is kind of a tool to allow people who do not have a sensor to visualize what the community glucose data looks like after logging, and we’re improving our in-app engagement tracking.


We hit five million food logs total, which is just a huge number that we should talk about. I think from approximately 33,000 people, so we’re averaging like 150 food logs per logging member. And then the Beta is currently impacting our SLAs and volumes is to be expected as we roll out Beta, as we move into a new product. Support of course is adapting and evolving while still backing product and doing a ton of really product work. We’ve also been leaning on autonomy, so the autonomy team have been scaling up rapidly. They hit 230 cases each this week, so being able to really backfill the support team, which is good. And then conversion tests for Beta two, we paused those. So you might remember from last week we were launching some conversion tests for Beta two obviously, which is coming after Beta One. And we paused those because the infrastructure didn’t support existing members.


It was only built for new members. So we decided to pause and fix that because it was really a blocker. A lot of existing members wanted to join. Otherwise, most of the infrastructure for Beta two sign-ups is ready to ship for next week as we start that up again. Fewer posts on digital and social this past month, but plus 20% due to likely paid Ads. So our impressions are going up despite posting less frequently and our Ads are really resonating. We picked up 12,000 IG followers to the giveaway with Dr. Hyman and Guides videos down here. Or actually it’s these two. Are really performing quite well on social, so there’s a lot of scalability there. And then finally we had an update to performance review processes, shifting to twice annually. I think Nicole’s going to touch on that and we are prepping for an Austin meetup for support and Ops.


All right. I just want to highlight, we had some great guests on, we had Vinay Hiremath from Loom, founder of Loom on inside the company and we had a great conversation with Johann Hari who is an amazing author, conversation on focus, which is really cool. We’re attracting really great guests on our shows. And I think that’s the majority of it. So, huge week. Huge week. Now I want to welcome Andrew Koutnik. Andrew’s a friend, he’s been an academic partner to us. He’s been a really tremendous thought leader in the space of metabolic health and has helped us and led a couple of research initiatives including the Grove City studies on high versus low carb diets versus performance on the major IRB initiative. That is our current general population study.


Andrew was one of the first people that I worked with to try to shape that, was really influential in our thinking around what that study should look like and helping us get to a point where we could actually get that over the finish line, which has obviously been huge for our company. Research scientist sits right at the inflection point of nutrition, metabolism, personal interest and performance. There’s just a ton going on. Andrew, I appreciate you taking some time to chat with us and first of all, would love to hear a few words about your excitement about the future of metabolic health and metabolic health technology. And then I would love to hear a little bit more from you on the recent study results that we got with you and your team.

Andrew Koutnik (07:58):

I appreciate that intro, Justin. You guys all hear me? Thumbs up I assume. All right, good deal. Well, honor to be here, guys. It’s cool. Known of Levels for quite a long period of time. You guys have really been in the forefront of the CGM glycemic world from a business perspective for quite a while, so I appreciate being here, knowing Josh and working with Asher for quite a bit of time here, to try and convert some of the help you guys have brought to our research world. For your first question, Josh, what is my thought on the future metabolic health? Well, I’m obviously very biased. I live with diabetes. I take injections every day, syringes. I wear a CGM for over a decade, so I’m going to give you a biased response to that. But I think the insights that those can glean people is amazing.


If they’re able to do it, I think what they can learn from it if they have good information and formative information could quite frankly transform some people’s lives. And I think we see that the data supports that these tools can move the meter, can move the needle, so to speak, in someone’s health. If they use it the right way, they use the right information and they can capitalize on that opportunity. From a research perspective, this is the bridge over to what we did. I think there’s limitless opportunities. I think it’s really been around for quite a period of time of what it can do beyond the world of diabetes, which I come from and have lived personally with type one. But I think its ability to translate into other aspects such as sport, such as the ability to track informative biomarkers for not just things like performance, which is what we analyze in the sports context, but well beyond that where I think the future lies, which is health.


And so, that leads into our study that one of a few that we’ve done, and Levels has been a huge supporter of these initiatives by providing sensors and other support to make sure these studies actually happen. They don’t happen otherwise that you guys probably are aware of. But one of the biggest studies we did, I guess big from the perspective of what it actually meant for the world of sports, what it meant for the world of performance, what it meant for the world of metabolic health, is a recent study we did in 10 middle-aged competitive athletes. The reason for choosing middle-aged athletes is particularly important. Middle-aged athletes is at that crossroads between young and healthy and aged community where we know there’s these subclinical changes that seem to occur before we see overt diagnosis of things like very common diseases like diabetes, obesity, et cetera. Those are obviously part of the metabolic disease suite.


And we were interested in this community specifically because of that reason. And tracking glycemia for that reason. We see in the data, if you look at general observational epidemiologic data, that if you look at general population trends and things like fasting blood glucose. Now, not all data is super consistent and we obviously need a lot more on that specifically and what’s happening in the CGM world or what’s happening when people wear CGMs in general, to understand what that data looks like outside of things like diabetes, because that’s where most of the data sits right now. But, we were interested in this glycemic perspective, but this study weirdly originated on performance, the idea of sports performance. Could we give a low carbohydrate diet or a high carbohydrate diet? This typical dietary paradigm of high carb versus this counterintuitive or reverse logic low carb, which has been particularly popular over the last five years.


And the reason we were interested in doing that is because of the lot of literature that if you do that for less than four weeks, that there might be a drop-off in performance, particularly in elite athletes. We were interested to look at very, very highly competitive athletes from a perspective of performance. So, not just performance, it’s worth clarifying the short duration, high intensity performance that’s highly relevant because those typically utilize glycolytic metabolites to fuel the performance initiatives. So when these individuals underwent four weeks of a very low carbohydrate diet versus a high carbohydrate diet, these individuals performed exactly the same. Meaning that, someone, if they at least habituated to a diet for four weeks, these two very contrasting forms of dietary intake, high carb and low carb, especially important to highlight that low carb is a profound shift in your metabolism. It essentially overhauls the type of metabolites you’re using, not just at rest, but also throughout performance initiatives.


When these individuals were performing, they performed exactly the same. But what was uniquely different is what was feeling that performance. The individuals on a low carbohydrate group were actually achieving record levels of fat oxidation. So they were utilizing during exercise at high levels of fat, over 1.5 grams per minute during very, very high intense exercise bouts. That’s even more important to highlight that that was over 85% of someone’s VO2 max. Typically, when you consider this crossover effect, if anyone’s familiar with that, as you get farther and farther down the spectrum of higher intensities, up to a 100% VO2 max, carbohydrate oxidation goes up, fat oxidation goes down. What we saw is that, people were able to oxidize record levels of fat even beyond where it should have normally been shut down. So that was over 85% of their VO2 max. So no one’s really ever reported that at these levels before.


Hence the point of doing these very high intense short duration exercise bouts. And again, they did that and performed the same. But the thing that really was near and dear to my heart is someone living with type one diabetes was the metabolic or cardio metabolic health effect of this dietary shift from a glycemic health vantage point. And we saw very typical trends in low carbohydrate cardio metabolic effects. You would expect things like HbA1c to start showing trends for decreases, insulin to come down just slightly, but things like total cholesterol might rise, LDL might rise, HDL might rise as well, and triglycerides might come down. And we saw all those typical effects very consistent with literature. What was very stark and very important to me, but completely unexpected, is when tracking glycemic response, there was a run-in period for both groups. And this was a crossover study, which meant that the individuals were actually the same individuals across high carb and a washout period and then did low carb and in a randomized order. We controlled body weight, changes as much as we could.


We controlled calorie intake and we controlled activity level. So what we are really trying to elucidate here is diet induced effects on performance, substrate oxidation and glycemic and cardio metabolic health. So, I already talked about a lot of that, but from a glycemic health perspective. There was a distinct difference between those in the high carb group and the low carb group. Meaning that those in the high carb group ran higher on average, had greater deviation than those in the low carb group. Now, someone might ask, “So what?” Okay. Someone who’s on a high-carb diet, they’re supposed to see these trends during the perennial period, so when they’re awake and when they’re eating. The problem is that, in 30% of these high middle-aged, highly competitive athletes, 30% had glycemic values not only in the 24-hour window, but in the fasting period as well, over a 31-day period, consistent with pre-diabetes.


Which meant that if you actually monitor someone using these advanced tools that don’t just track a single biomarker at one single snapshot, but you looked at minute-by-minute data over multiple days, you started to see or elucidate values consistent with adverse responses in glycemia or dysglycemia. And that meant that three of the individuals in this community was actually north of a 100 milligrams per deciliter over a 24-hour period and during their fasting window, but actually all three of them were above 110 milligrams per deciliter. Someone could say, “Okay, that’s just a caveat of the measurement tool. You didn’t look at HbA1c or oral glucose tolerance test.” But we had batch control. They were crossover analysis, they were using the same spot. We really tried to eliminate the possibility that that was an effect here. And still on the high carbohydrate diet, 30% had dysglycemia values, consistent with pre-diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association and consistent with other studies.


When doing a low carbohydrate diet, they reversed. All individuals reversed that and lowered their glucose values into normal glycemic range. This illustrated to me as a take-home that the initial point of the primary outcome was performance, and they performed exactly the same. They had remarked shifts in substrate oxidation to fuel that shift in dietary paradigm. So what you fed them is what they were oxidizing during exercise. But what was start, very different and unexpected was this dysglycemia in a percentage of the subjects which we don’t completely understand, and we would not have elucidated if we weren’t using these refined tools such as CGM to try and track them. As such, I think it opens a can of worms in the athletic community, this idea of whether we should be following these standard paradigms or maybe we should rethink the way people are fueling their exercise and efforts. Because it’s not just about performance, it’s not just about elite athletes and what they’re doing.


Frankly, 99% of the population will never be elite. So we’re talking about the 99% of the rest of the community in regards to their metabolic health. So that’s really the take home, that’s really the enthusiasm that I have towards this topic because I think it opens a can of worms that even the most healthy, those who are exercising, the most protected, lean, normal body, et cetera, show signs that we should be maybe reconsidering what they’re doing if they’re performing exactly the same from a nutritional perspective and how it impacts ultimately glycemia. So I’ll stop there and say, I appreciate the opportunity to be here with you guys.

Josh Clemente (17:43):

That was an awesome and packed refresher, I think. Luckily we have this on recording, so people can go back and review the takeaways. But yeah, I think you nailed all the points that I’m super excited we were able to uncover with that research. The objective was to show interesting new findings and to challenge some of the assumptions. And as somebody myself who was surprised at how bad my glycemic control was on a 24-hour CGM trace when I first tried it, despite having none of the classic aesthetic markers that I should be worried, it definitely resonates with me and I’m really curious to continue to drive in and see why is this happening, especially for people that don’t have, don’t carry the classic signs.


I also think it’s really important to remind ourselves that most of the nutrition industry, especially around sports and athletics, the assumption is made that whatever the elite athletes are doing, I should do, if I’m just a weekend warrior. If I’m somebody that hits the gym an hour a night, well, let me fuel up on Gatorade and let me make sure that I’m carb loading and glycogen replenishing and all of those classic techniques that does not scale, and it might not even work for that elite person either.


So anyway, Andrew, there’s a ton more here that we could dig into. I would love to obviously turn this into a long podcast going deep down the rabbit hole, so maybe we’ll have to just do that sometime soon. But for the rest of the team, definitely check out the study I dropped it in the results there. Really excited that we were able to work with Andrew and the rest of the team. And Andrew, if there’s one other thing, maybe it’s… Rather than asking what we should improve on the Levels product, I think let’s instead focus on what is the next major discovery or exploration or study that you believe should happen in order to push the field forward?

Andrew Koutnik (19:25):

And I think this is actually particularly timely. If anyone follows Twitter, you’ve probably seen an absolute explosion happen around postpandemic response, the impact that might have or not have. I want to highlight one thing. There is relevance to that discussion. The problem is that there’s a lot of assumptions made around preliminary data outside of the CGM world. To push things forward, the next big step in my opinion, that is universally acknowledged across all the individuals who are a part of that discussion, whether on the side of you, it shouldn’t matter, these postpandemic responses don’t matter or they do matter a lot. Or to some spectrum of how they do matter, is understanding what is happening in the non-diabetic population using these CGMs, i.e, What the bigger initiative was that Josh elucidated earlier. I am keen on that because there’s a huge amount of assumptions made around these glycemic responses, yet we don’t really know what’s happening across the mean of the general population.


I think Levels has a unique opportunity to take advantage of that and do something about it to open the eyes of the rest of the world, as to what is actually going on and how does that set the reference point for everything else that people are speculating on at this point. Because a lot of those discussions that you guys are seeing are based on speculation and usually trying to temper concern. In our study, someone seeing a 24 hour, a fasting glycemic response over 110 milligrams per deciliter, I don’t think is a sign, we should assume that’s normal. I take the opposite response in that regard. So, especially since we know that we are between healthy and older in aged communities, there are things that are happening well before overt diagnosis. And I think that we might be seeing some indications that there’s something we should be looking at and understanding at a greater level and understanding CGMs from the general normative population, is the biggest, most impactful step that can be made in understanding and moving that research forward.

Josh Clemente (21:17):

Love it. Yeah, we’re taking steps towards that, of course, but lots more to do to show something conclusive. Andrew, thanks a lot for taking the time and jamming with us and working with us. Lots more, I’m sure we’ll do together. So if you want to stick around for the rest of the meeting, we’ve got a packed one and we would love to have you hang. If not, thanks from the whole team. Really appreciate it.

Andrew Koutnik (21:37):

Appreciate it guys. I will just stick around until you guys finish.

Josh Clemente (21:40):

Awesome. All right. Jumping to culture and kudos. So Alan’s out today, but just want to really highlight that Alan’s been with us for two years. It’s been just a huge force for us on the team and super, super appreciative of everything you brought to the team, Alan, and please enjoy your time away. Next, big shout out to Adam. So Adam on the R&D team, I’ll say he’s been making R&D lemonade. We’re moving fast, there’s a lot going on. Small changes have big impact on someone like Adam’s work. And so just this week, without getting too deep into specifics, he just continues to show that he can learn fast, adapt to challenges, and just keep executing and keeping everybody aligned with really a great attitude. And I know the whole team really appreciates it. He’s super resource constrained, being the only person on the data science side for R&D and I know it’s a big boost for everybody to see him continue to adapt and move forward.


Similarly, huge shout out to Maxine. She’s just been leading the charge on shipping the Beta signup process. Just a ton of work went into that and everyone just generally appreciates the really organized attention to detail and great teammate that Maxine is. And finally, speaking of teammates, we’re sending Steph off. Steph is… Today’s her last day, and we really just appreciate her being a part of the Level’s journey and look forward to staying in touch as you move ahead. Steph, it’s been a great one. All right. Over to Nicole.

Nicole Miller (23:14):

Thank you. Just a quick note here. We are rolling out a new avenue for peer feedback. So instead of having the peer feedback only in 360 reviews, we want to emphasize having this year-round, at any time. So everyone is able to send this to a teammate to solicit feedback about yourself. Managers can nominate or send this form to others on behalf of the direct reports and ask for feedback. Or, and we can use this as a part of Project Retros to tie peer feedback to direct projects or specific launches. But we want this to be an ongoing thing and we will add all of the feedback from this form into the ongoing performance tracker that managers and people Ops has access to. And then managers can share this feedback with you in your one-to-ones and performance reviews. So the idea is that this is a continual process.


Feedback can sometimes have a negative connotation, but remember that this encompasses advice and coaching and appreciation, and then also evaluation and suggestions for improvement. So this is how we grow, this is how we evaluate individual’s progress within their own levels and role and promotions and all of those pieces. So we want to test this out, see how it goes. And since this is a new process and our new process of performance reviews is coming up at the end of the month, I would encourage people to check out the form, send it out. If you want specific feedback from someone, feel free to take that on and just send it out. It should be a relatively quick form, couple minutes to fill out. And then again, we’ll collect all that information and store it in our Notion databases, and then managers will share that with individuals on an ongoing basis. So yeah, let me know if there’s any questions and a lot more information is coming out about the actual performance review process, but it’s all shaping up really nicely. So, thank you.

Josh Clemente (25:15):

Awesome. Thank you, Nicole. All right. Main thing, Level shows you how food affects your health. No changes here. Very confident. Everyone’s working towards this right now. Sam, you want to jump into the slide?

Sam Corcos (25:28):

Yeah, hopefully my hotel WiFi still working. So we’ve hit our, as mentioned last week, a lot of our Beta One goals. We’re still waiting to hear back on retention, which we’ll get on May 3rd. We’re now on Beta two, so we are waiting on. Right now, we haven’t started the outreach. I think Ben mentioned that we’re starting this mid next week. And so right now we have one conversion. I think I forgot to put in the targets, but the target is a 1000, so we’re going to have a lot more data on this next week. But that’s definitely the big focus area right now is to make sure that everything on the infrastructure can support a 1000 new members for Beta two.

Josh Clemente (26:19):

All right. Looking forward to continuing to see this come together for Beta two. Okay. Maz.

Maziar Brumand (26:30):

Hi everyone. Welcome to product update April 7th. I’m wondering who that one person is. I wonder if that’s Ben that’s converted on that sheet. All right. Let’s do it. I’m going to keep mine short and we have great content coming on from Azure and Mike that have done really fantastic work. Just wanted to highlight two points. First of all, big thank you to the team for launching Beta One on time and in a really, really fantastic way. And just it’s been a cross collaboration amongst everybody. Whether it’s growth, getting the members in and exceeding expectations, whether it’s the product team, whether it’s engineering team, it’s just been fantastic. So, thank you to everybody that’s contributed. And it’s pretty much everybody I think at the company. And of course support. The two priorities that we’re really focusing on, Beta One, one is to create a learning system so that we can learn from every interaction.


Obviously the point of our app is to help people change their behavior in the real world and stay engaged. And so, we are building a learning system where we have five channels of feedback from our members, where we’re going to collect on every call to action that we have in our app. We’re going to collect data. And the five channels are effectively anywhere from app statistics. So measuring the interactions in the app, it’s polls for people that have used the new experience, typically a quick way for people to tell us how they like the content or did they do the action. It’s surveys which are a little bit more in depth, which goes into deeper questions, takes a little bit more time, but still pretty quick and delightful. And then we’re also adding a direct messaging temporary feature to accelerate our learning. This is a way for people to provide a direct feedback to our coaches to tell us what they like, what they don’t like.


Is the program too hard, too easy, too structured, too specific? So really opening up that feedback channel to be almost instantaneous so we can learn as fast as possible. And then obviously the last one is, where we find confounders that we want to go deeper, we will do UXR. So we effectively have five channels to measure and learn from Beta One experiences. And we hope this will allow us to learn a lot faster than we would otherwise and also avoid any kind of over steering that may happen if we didn’t have this data. So I think that’s number one. It’s one of our biggest priorities and we’re really investing in that. And big thanks to people that contributed to that, namely, Caitlin, David and a host of other people. Azure, that had really putting work and Cosima putting work into creating these channels together. So that’s priority number one.


Probably number two is really understanding how we can create leverage and how can we create with our content? How can we reuse? Obviously we’ve shot a lot of content. Some of these content are hard to shoot, so how can we reuse them while we actually created engaging in fun? So we’re thinking through techniques where we can actually do a lot of that and we’re going to experiment and learn from that. So that’s the second big priority. Obviously there’s a lot more priorities, but these are two big things in Beta One that we need to learn, so that we can make this successful. With that, I will turn over to Azure.

Azure Grant (29:45):

All right. Hey guys, you can go to the next slide. I just dropped a link in the chat to the Levels Food Guide if any of you want to open this up and look at it on the side if you haven’t seen it yet. So today I want to walk you through briefly what the Levels Food Guide does. This is a resource we’ve put together in Notion as a searchable database for Beta One members and for our team. So I think of this like 10x the whole 30 food list. A guide to what to eat or what not to eat, but based on the Levels approach to food, what the data set shows actually spikes people, as well as USDA nutrition information. So it’s way more detailed. And as you might guess, this was supported by a lot of people. Thanks to Caitlin and Hamy for a huge lift on the editorial side and a team of writers that they worked with.


It was supported by Charu’s work on nutrition, edits from Cosima, grew out of Levels, Levels in David’s work and had a ton of edits by the XP team and end product team as well. So what is it? Let’s go to the next slide here. So this takes hundreds of the most popular foods in our database and gives them their own card, links them to many more tags within our giant tag database and puts them in a searchable format online. It’s supposed to be organized like a tour of the grocery store that takes people through a cheat sheet at the top and then produce sections, protein, pantry items, dairy and other types of items. It’s purpose is to give people feedback in more detail on the nutritional and glucose impacts of foods. Right now, specifically to support our guides in Beta One as they’re taking people through the experience of how we approach food.


And it will eventually integrate into the kitchen app and the meal review. All right. So next one on how does it do this? So the guide divides foods into those to enjoy, which we explicitly recommend those to moderate and to pair with activity, which is kind of a level-specific category. Of course we want you to be active after all your foods, but some are even more important to be active after eating than others, and then those two aim to avoid. So each food I have a couple examples at the right are clickable cards that take you to more detailed nutritional information, as well as details on why we made the call on specific foods and food swaps. So this was a big editorial lift. So for example, avocados are food we heartily recommend. You could see a brief summary of why we love them, linked out to more detailed resources. And for a food like grapes that do have some nutritional benefits, we explained that although they have those benefits, they’re also a big spiker and they offer a food swap instead.


So, I think of this resource as taking the Levels dietary philosophy, all of the guidance originally developed by Casey and editorial team and everyone articulated on the blog and then creating alignment across the team on our stances on every food. Things like fruit, dairy, grains, different sweeteners and beyond. So no guide is going to satisfy every single diet and blood sugar was far from the only factor considered, but we now have this living resource for our members and for us that makes a call on pretty much everything you might eat as an average American and then defends that stance so we can refine it and think about it more. So that’s it for food guide. Thank you. And please take a look at it in Notion, give feedback on what you think about it and look forward to refining it more. I think we’re off to Mike Di next.

Mike DiDonato (33:20):

Josh, can you hit me with a refresh? There we go. There we go. All right. So Maz said, teased out the fitness planner guide that we were working on a couple of weeks ago and we’re excited to share where we landed for the Beta One cohort. And then can you go to the next slide, Josh? So we’re a nutrition first and focused company. So why even test this programmatic fitness planner or a Beta One cohort? And as many of us know, incorporating fitness and daily movement into our routines is crucial for optimal metabolic health. In the micro things like post meal walks or other light to moderate activity can help dispose excess glucose as our muscles uptake energy, independent of insulin. And then in the longer term, we know how powerful exercise can be for our mitochondria function with some studies, showing things like high heart rate training, enhancing long-term insulin sensitivity in just a few weeks. That’s it for Amy, Caitlin and Casey for highlighting all of this on the blog, to share with our members.


And then beyond just metabolic health, I pulled out a quote from one of our favorite people, Dr. Peter Attia, to highlight how powerful exercise can be both for our life and our health span. So it was an obvious choice to test this. Next slide, Josh. And then when we created this guide for our members, we decided that in order for it to be sustainable and beneficial, it had to embrace three core principles. It had to be specific, it had to be flexible and also accessible to any and everyone. Next slide, Josh. So there’s an unlimited supply of information out there online about health and fitness. And this definitely can be helpful, but sometimes it’s a distraction. There’s a variety of strategies that can be employed to develop an exercise plan, but only a handful of core elements are necessary for success. And we wanted to teach and share these elements with our members in a simple fitness formula that includes high heart rate training. These exercise sessions, they don’t need to be as lengthy as other workouts as their purpose is to deliver maximum or near maximum effort for brief intervals.


This training can help increase our metabolic rate as we typically burn more energy at faster rates. It can help enhance heart health and then one that our team will like. It can be beneficial for better blood sugar control. And then the other element will be strength training. So we’re prioritizing exercises that improve our overall health and make daily life more enjoyable. One of the best ways to do this is through strength training. Though many people may associate the term with big muscles, strength training is not about achieving a specific appearance or bulking up. Rather, it’s about ensuring that we remain strong, active and independent as we age. And then, lastly but not leastly, zone two training. This type of exercise focuses on working on lower to moderate steady state intensity and it promotes aerobic capacity, fat burning, and cardiovascular health. It’s beneficial for everything from training for a race, to doing daily activities like carrying groceries, playing with kids, and even climbing up the stairs. Next slide, Josh.


And then to be specific and also remain flexible, we need to provide guidance to make sure that we’re meeting people where they are. One of the ways that we’re testing this is in example or suggested three day versus five day plan options. As we know, different people will have different time commitments or allotments they can for their fitness. Next slide, Josh. And then resources. When it comes to nutrition, our members oftentimes tell us, “I love all the learning and all of this stuff, but just tell me what to do or tell me what to eat or what do you eat.” So to help make this guide more accessible and reduce that cognitive load on our members, we’re including plenty of resources in more than a few different formats. So we’ll have exercise demonstration videos with voiceovers, coaching proper form and pace, and we’ll also pair those with static assets that are shown on this page. Next slide, Josh.


Oh, these are just a few additional resources, including we put together a Notion doc that highlights how to do each suggested exercise with modifications. And I think there’s one more slide. How we got here. So did we just wave a magic wand and say, Wawa? The answer is no. Our team did a deep dive into the work of some of the leading science-backed experts in this space. I included a few of these experts on the slide for reference, some of them you probably know and or recognize. And one final slide, Josh. While I’m the DRI for this and we all know I love and spend thousands of hours working out, digesting fitness papers and other information, we’re really fortunate to have a team with a diverse fitness background from trained fitness and yoga instructors to Ironmen, Marathoners, CrossFitters, and just about any fitness modality that you can think of. We’re excited to use their expertise as well.


And then finally, in line with our product philosophy, we’re taking that iterative skateboard approach to testing and developing this guide, we’re excited to share this with all of you and Sonya’s Beta cohort members to get feedback, so that we can improve for Beta Two and beyond. I think that’s it, Josh.

Josh Clemente (39:02):

Awesome. Well, I just got my… Go ahead. You have something?

Mike DiDonato (39:08):

No, I’m sorry. Oh, no. I think the next slide just has the short link if anybody wants to follow along and see the doc.

Josh Clemente (39:16):

There it is. All right. Definitely want to boost what was said in the chat. Everyone on the team should follow along here and be working with the food guide, working with the exercise or the fitness guide, and helping us to learn at maximum pace here because skateboards only become cars if they’re doing the trick. So, awesome. Awesome work. Thanks, Azure. Thanks, Mike. Thanks everybody behind the scenes. Okay, Tom.

Tom Griffin (39:45):

All right. We’ve got a growth update this week and the focus is going to be pretty high level on Q2 priorities, but we’re going to start with a few slides of just stepping back and putting these priorities into context as we look across the full calendar year. So, next slide. All right. So to really simplify things, this is our view of the world right now. The first couple quarters of the year, as we all know are focused on preparing the next evolution of the product and specifically for general availability, the first week of July. And then the next couple of quarters, second half of the year is going to be focused on selling that product. Next slide.


So at the company level, this is really what we’re focused on right now in Q2. This shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the top priority is building the product. And then we’re also focused on selling the Beta version of the product. So actually filling these Beta cohorts, we are preparing our growth levers and our growth surfaces to give us the best shot, possible to hit these growth numbers that we have for the back half of the year. And then lastly, still a priority, not a top priority right now, but continuing to sell the existing product. We’re calling it levels classic these days. Next slide. And then these priorities switch to mostly growth in Q3 and Q4 and then also continuing to iterate on the product. So product development is always going to be a priority and we’re going to be iterating on it for really as long as we’re a company.


Next slide. So in terms of some of the key metrics and categories and metrics that we’re tracking both pre, I’m just going to refer to it as GA. I know we don’t like acronyms, but general availability is GA for the rest of this presentation. The top area that we’re focused right now is on these product market fit signal metrics. So just as a reminder, Sam put out a memo called Beta numbers to hit that focus on how we’re evaluating this signal for the rest of Q2. And this really comes down to product velocity. So just can we hit these target dates for these releases and iterate fast on the product conversion metrics, so can we fill these Beta cohorts at a pretty solid conversion rate. And then some other additional product metrics like engagement and retention as we look to month two and three of some of these cohorts.


And then secondarily, looking to just keep growth pretty stable right now, so flat or a little bit improving, we don’t have ambitious targets right now that we’re trying to hit, but we definitely don’t want to decline, so we’re keeping our eye on that as well. And then as most people are familiar with, this is the number that we’re going to be really orienting around as a team and a company come July. So it’s 15% month-over-month revenue growth. Next slide. All right, so in terms of growth priorities in Q2, in colloquial terms, this is pretty much what we’re zeroed in on right now. So I’m starting here with just supporting product development. So this is the top company priority, and it’s not to say that growth team specifically is allocating most of our resources towards product development, but I’m calling this out because content in particularly lately has been focused a lot on supporting product, is doing a lot of amazing work already mentioned in this presentation. So, shout out to Caitlin and Haney and increasingly Tony, all supporting product.


And then as mentioned number two, filling these Beta cohorts, Ben and Jackie are putting a ton of time into this. And then three and four, I’m going to focus on a little bit more of the next few slides, but figuring out what our V1 of pricing and positioning is for this next evolution of the product come first week of July.


And then also as mentioned, preparing these growth Levers for scaling. Next slide. So I won’t go deep on this, but a couple of these areas that we’re focused on. So pricing and positioning, A couple of the areas over the next call it month are going to be in order to figure out what our V1 of pricing and positioning is. Number one, Lauren is leading the charge on some, what I refer to as top down research and analysis. So looking at the market and the landscape of health and wellness solutions that are already out there for Marines and figuring out how we’re positioning ourselves within that landscape. And then number two, figuring out what type of pricing can actually sustain a profitable business longterm. So that’s kind of the top down approach. And then bottoms up, actually getting feedback from the market and figuring out what customers are actually willing to pay and how we best position the product in order to maximize conversions.


So smoke test is a term that you may or may not be familiar with. You will be as of next week when we send out a memo and we really start focusing on this, but this refers to a host of pricing and positioning experiments that we can run on landing pages, without actually fully selling the product to people who are going to be using it right now. So we’re getting a lot of data from the market on these beta cohorts, but in addition we’re going to supplement that data and those conversion tests with all of these landing page smoke test experiments that are going to be coming in the next few weeks. And then in this other column here, preparing the growth levers, so this is really across the full funnel from demand gen efforts to paid acquisition and partnerships and performance marketing email and then user referrals, which you’re going to hear a lot more about, which we’re also working on, which is a new growth lever.


Next slide. So I’m going to take a couple of slides to just talk about how we are thinking about pricing and positioning, starting with the philosophical side of things. So this is a technical business jargon term here called value-based pricing. And it refers to how we are thinking about pricing. And there are often a few components, a few inputs that inform how a company prices their products depending on what type of company they are, what industry they’re in. And these are a few of the key legs of the stool. So again, thinking in terms of top down and bottom up, top down, there’s Competition Based Pricing. So you might look at the market, especially imagine you’re a commodity, you’re selling a widget that’s very similar to a lot of things that are already out there. You might just look at the market and look at what competitors are pricing and pick something pretty similar.


Then there’s Cost-Plus. So mostly focusing on what your costs are. So imagine that it costs you a $100 to make a product, and you know as a business you need to have 50% margins. Then you’re just going to decide, okay, that’s how we price our product, we’re going to sell it for $150. And then lastly, the input that’s probably most important to us, but it’ll be a balance across these different areas for value-based pricing, is again, what are customers actually willing to pay and what drives that willingness to pay is how do they perceive the value of the product. Next slide. So that framework is mapping to how we are thinking about priorities and the strategy and tactics that need to take place over the next quarter to get us to a V1 of pricing positioning that we’re confident in. So in terms of top-down, if you just look at these questions up here at the top, this is what Lauren has been focused on and Riley as well.


So how are we positioned within the market? And then number two, what pricing again makes this a viable long-term business model? So this involves a lot of market research talking to other companies and then also the quantitative business model analysis side of things. And then from a bottoms-up approach, again, just to reiterate, this is getting feedback from the market and actually figuring out, will customers pay and how do we best position this so that they value the product properly such that they pay the price that we are charging. And this is coming again in the form of Beta cohort conversion tests and then these new category of tests that are going to be starting soon led by Karen that we’re referring to as smoke testing. Next slide. And this is how it’s going to shake out practically over the next couple of months.


So the business model and market analysis that Lauren’s leading is well underway and we’re probably going to have an initial V1 proposal of rough pricing based on that. And then again, we’re going to refine and supplement that with all of these experiments that we’re going to be running. So before the end of the month, we’re going to launch our first smoke test and then we’ve got this opportunity when we start to onboard 2000 new Beta members for Beta Three in early May. And then we’ll continue to iterate after that with the additional smoke tests, all with the goal of actually finally updating our website surfaces and sign up flow for general availability, call it by mid-June so we can have that live for GA in early July. Next slide.


All right. So zooming back out, wanted to just provide a quick update on the growth numbers currently as they stand today with selling Levels Classic. Next slide. So we just wrapped up Q1 and the March numbers are in, and it was nice to see that March was actually our biggest month of the year so far, especially because January tends to be a really strong month for health and wellness companies including Levels. And so we saw our highest number of net new members of the quarter and then I zoomed out and wanted to look at the last couple of quarters. Next slide. And this is how things look across the last six months. So Q4, 2022 into Q1, 2023. And you’ll notice, March is the highest number of new members besides November, which is what I expected to see. If you recall, November is when we ran our first ever large discount promotion through Black Friday and we’re actually selling annual membership at 50% off.


So about 30 to 40% of the new members in that month came from that promotion. So I wanted to look at what the growth looked like from Q4 to Q1, looking at membership revenue. So this is just a simple formula taking these new members each month and multiplying basically the membership revenue that they paid in that month. So next slide. And as Josh mentioned at the start, we actually have had some pretty solid growth. So we grew 18% from Q4 to Q1. So again, we stopped prioritizing growth as our top priority about five months ago. But nevertheless, we’ve been doing a heck of a lot of work obviously on the sign-up flow, but also on beginning to stand up some of these new growth levers across, for example, paid marketing is example of this and we have been seeing growth here. This was good to see.


Next slide. Oh, this is it. So obviously as we look towards the back half of the year, this is really going to be the challenge for growth is where do we find 15% growth each month. Not just July when we launch, but in August, September, October and really in perpetuity we need to be growing every month and this is going to be the challenge. So I’m just noting that this presentation and then also a memo that is going to follow in the next couple of days, looks at our current priorities in preparation. But there’s going to be another memo coming that I’m going to be working on over the next few weeks that’s going to take a much more granular and quantitative approach to looking at how we’re going to approach achieving this level of growth in the back half of the year and the tactics that we’re going to execute against those goals. That is it.

Josh Clemente (51:20):

Great work. Nicely done. Yeah, awesome update. Love seeing the thinking and simplified down to team members who’s working on what. Super helpful. I hope everyone’s starting to see how the pieces are aligning, both in terms of how we’re iterating towards product execution, breaking down our big objectives into Betas, into Alphas, into sub features which we’re testing, and then how we’re working on the growth side to test the demand before we even have those small features and those Betas ready to go and building the case to make sure that we’re heading in the direction we need to be by late this year. Okay, great. So we are on to… Yep, no new open roles here. So if you were someone you know is interested, check out levels.link/careers. We have a general application there where you can send in some info and as we proceed to build and hit our goals, we will also eventually have additional team opportunities.


We’re at individual contributions. I’m going to stop share here. Got a couple minutes for this. Go ahead and use the reactions button, hit raise your hand like this and recommend sharing something personal, something professional. I’m going to jump in and just say professionally, I’m really excited to see us hitting dates. It’s really hard, especially when things are changing rapidly. We are not in some refined big company where everything is well known for years in advance. So hitting dates is something that drives me and just so proud of the team for calling our shots and backing them up. De-scoping when necessary, but just staying true to the deadlines. There’s a ton of exciting stuff happening on the R&D side, which we’ll have some more updates on. But suffice to say, we’re also hitting dates on that side and getting very excited about some of the big swings. And then personally looking forward to the Ops meeting, coming to Austin in a couple days now and Starship is going to launch soon. So I’m very excited about that. Rob.

Robert Lustig (53:24):

Just an FYI, next week I may or may not be on the call. I have an emergency meeting with Secretary of HHS, Xavier Becerra and Rosa DeLauro, the democratic congresswoman of Connecticut to try to fix the NIH and try to fix the food supply at the same time. Wish me luck.

Josh Clemente (53:45):

Anyone can do it, it’s you, Rob. Bring back the good news. Chris.

Chris Jones (53:52):

So I want to start off by just a big huge thank you to Steph. I wanted to sneak in before she raised her hand. As I mentioned before, seeing your big smile every time I see it just warms my heart. So all the time. And I’m looking at your parking space on my property. So your teardrop is always welcome. I just want to say it’s been such a pleasure to be able to work with you. So thank you for everything. I also echo Josh’s comment, super excited for the support Ops offsite meetup in Austin next week. So that should be a lot of fun. And then personally, I got a new power tool, so I got a wood chipper. So for those of you that don’t know what a wood chipper is, just watch the movie Fargo and you’ll know exactly what I’m going to be doing this weekend. So if you don’t see me in Austin, please call 911 and alert my wife that I had an accident.

Josh Clemente (54:52):

We trust you, Chris. Enjoy. Steph.

Stephanie Coates (54:58):

Hello. Gosh, I did want to say something before taking off. I am just racked with gratitude and if I think back to two years ago when I first found out about Levels, I remember going on the website and being like, “This is the coolest freaking company I’ve ever seen.” And I didn’t even have the confidence to apply, but the only reason I ended up applying is because I couldn’t get it out of my head of wanting to be a part of something like this. And so, just even though I know, I think the biggest challenge over the past couple of months, and so many of you have heard me talk about this is, thinking the challenge is to lean into the acing remote environment, but then actually realizing the real challenge is, it has been trying to force a square peg into a round hole environment.


And it does feel so right to leaning into something that I think is going to be a much better fit for me in the long run in this phase of my career. But man, the last year and a half has been such an honor to be a part of this and it set the bar so high for the type of people I want to work with, the type of mission I want to work on. I feel so grateful and thank you all for all the supportive comments that you left in that goodbye thread. I’m tempted to export that and whenever I need a confidence boost just to read over those again. And so it feels bittersweet, but it feels so right and I’m so excited to continue to watch what you guys do on the sidelines and yeah, I just couldn’t be more grateful for this experience.

Josh Clemente (56:27):

We’re grateful to you, Steph, so stay in touch and best of luck from the whole team. Hui.

Hui Lu (56:35):

Yeah, first of all, definitely, thanks, Steph. Yeah, have been really enjoying working with you. You’re such a culture career. Love your big smile. Thank you for being very transparent and discussing with me all one ones about your thought process and everything. So obviously thanks for your contribution to our app and I guess work-wise, otherwise I’m just continued to be amazed by how fast we’re moving, how everyone is working together towards a common goal and the velocity and everything. And personal wise, I’m going for a week of vacation. We are going to Hawaii next week, so I feel… It’s actually, the flight is nice so I’m already excited and a bit less of work mood now, so if I’m still rambling, that’s because that’s the reason. But yeah, I really appreciate the opportunity for me to take time off and also see how the team will be doing without me. Yeah, thank you.

Josh Clemente (57:40):

I think you and Jesse are going to be in Hawaii simultaneously. So, enjoy that. Scott.

Scott Klein (57:45):

Get coffee together. I think certainly sad for stuff to go, but I think it’s really a moment where the team, not a family shines because it’s just unbelievable to see the outpouring of support for somebody to choose something that they feel like is a better opportunity for them personally and professionally. And I love that when we don’t have the faux emotional family attachment, it’s easy to root for that person just flat out. And so, I know we often talk about team, not a family in terms of performance, but I think this was just such a beautiful edge of it where it was everybody can just wish somebody well and hope we cross paths again in the future and hopefully that will work out. So was really excited about that. So good to have Beta One out. Thanks again everybody for just putting in tremendous hours and really just staying focused and having a sense of ownership.


It’s really helped. We’ve been in a flurry of planning and I think we’re going to have another similar push here for Beta Two. But it’s cool that we’ve been hitting both of these back to back now, because I think people are less scared about Beta Two and we feel like we’re getting in a good groove to actually hit another date, which feels really good. On the personal front, the masters is on, which is fantastic. So I’m on the couch and that’s what I’m going to be doing this weekend. And I think there should be a special eclipse name for when Master Sunday overlaps with Easter, because I think that that’s just a pretty magical thing. That’s my weekend. Watched a lot of golf.

Josh Clemente (59:11):

Enjoy it. All right. We made it. Awesome meeting. Thanks everybody for crushing it. Andrew, thanks for joining us and sharing more. Rob, best of luck changing the world. And Steph, looking forward to staying in touch. Whoever’s celebrating, enjoy Easter. Have a wonderful weekend and we’ll see you next week.