The Art of Branding

In the real world, you don’t have infinite resources; you don’t have a perfect product; and you don’t sell to a growing market without competition. You’re also not omnipotent, so you cannot control what people think of your brand. Under these assumptions, most companies need all the help they can get. […]

By |2016-10-24T14:08:56-07:00April 20th, 2015|Categories: Marketing and Sales|0 Comments

How to Spread the Word When Information Flows Faster Than Clout

In their book, Absolute Value: What Really Influences Customers In The Age of (Nearly) Perfect Information, Emanuel Rosen and Itamar Simonson explain a new approach to planting seeds to build awareness for a new product or service. Their idea is that the gradual adoption, trickle-down approach that started when Moses went to see God is [...]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:00-07:00April 13th, 2015|Categories: Books, Marketing and Sales|Tags: , |3 Comments

How to Be a Demo God

Several times a year a group of executives from startups do a six-minute demo of their products to an audience of venture capitalists, analysts, and journalists. This name of the event is, logically, DEMO. It’s a great occasion—especially if you understand the dance that’s going on: Entrepreneurs acting as if they don’t need venture capital, [...]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:04-07:00March 30th, 2015|Categories: Books|Tags: , , |0 Comments

The Art of Leading

Some aspiring entrepreneurs are already working for a big company. Like external entrepreneurs, they dream of creating innovative products. They, too, must prototype, position, pitch, bootstrap, recruit, fund, partner, sell, and support. The purpose of this minichapter is to explain how to do all this when you’re employed by a large business. […]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:07-07:00March 23rd, 2015|Categories: Books, Entrepreneurship|Tags: , , |2 Comments

The Art of Keeping Things Simple

Entrepreneurs face hundreds of decisions when they start a company, and there’s often a temptation to optimize each one of them—sometimes by breaking new ground. However, it’s best to focus one’s energy and attention on milestone issues. My experience and expertise is with US companies, but these are generally accepted startup practices: […]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:09-07:00March 18th, 2015|Categories: Books|Tags: , |2 Comments

My Love of Meerkat and a Hope That Another Company Will Embrace It Too

Since SXSW my first reaction when I see something worth sharing is to meercast it. I love Meerkat’s ease of use, immediacy, and visual feedback of seeing who’s watching and reading their comments. The gratification of meercasting is amazingly high. I have a couple of concerns about Meerkat. First, for the widespread adoption of Meerkat [...]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:11-07:00March 15th, 2015|Categories: Innovation|Tags: |0 Comments

The Art of the Pitch

Forget “I think, therefore I am.” For entrepreneurs, the operative phrase is, “I pitch, therefore I am.” Pitching isn’t only for raising money—it’s for reaching agreement, and agreement can yield many good outcomes including sales, partnerships, and new hires. Here are the key elements of a great pitch. […]

The Only 10 Slides You Need in Your Pitch

I am evangelizing the 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint. It’s quite simple: a pitch should have ten slides, last no more than twenty minutes, and contain no font smaller than thirty points. This rule is applicable for any presentation to reach agreement: for example, raising capital, making a sale, forming a [...]

By |2019-12-04T05:17:18-08:00March 5th, 2015|Categories: Books, Entrepreneurship, Pitching and Presenting, Venture Capital|Tags: |46 Comments

The Art of Simple Questions: How Simple Questions Lead to Great Innovations

There is a myth that successful companies begin with grandiose ambitions. The implication is that entrepreneurs should start with megalomaniac goals in order to succeed. To the contrary, my observation is that great companies began by wondering about simple things, and this leads to asking simple questions that beget companies: […]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:17-07:00March 3rd, 2015|Categories: Books, Entrepreneurship, Innovation|Tags: , , |7 Comments

Top 10 Ways to Capture Attention

This is a guest post by Ben Parr, the author of Captivology. You probably deal with attention issues every day. How do I get the attention of new customers? How do I retain the attention of existing clients? How do I captivate my boss or my upcoming date? It’s a hard problem to solve, especially [...]

By |2016-10-24T14:09:19-07:00March 2nd, 2015|Categories: Marketing and Sales, Pitching and Presenting, Social Media|Tags: |0 Comments