“Social media marketing” is not a sufficient marketing strategy for your startup. Yet this is the default answer that far too many founders of early-stage startups provide when asked about their distribution plan. I myself have stated a similar plan to mentors and investors in the past. It’s easy to fall into this path since there is certainly a plethora of articles, book, and gurus focusing on social media marketing, but finding efficient ways to promote your startup requires far more planning and creativity. In this article, we will cover some key questions to answer at the start, and we will flip the standard marketing approach on its head to break you out of the predictable (and less effective) path.Read More
A very common conundrum for startup founders–particularly non-technical ones–is: “How do I get investment, when investors want to see a product and traction, but I can’t build my product and get traction without money?!”
In this episode of Startup Basics we will explore three possible workarounds to help you make progress and break out of this classic Catch-22 situation.
Although it’s possible to build a successful tech company as a lone founder, there are many advantages to joining up with someone as committed as you that will be on the journey from the start. Choosing the right co-founder is vital for your startup’s success considering that 13% of founders surveyed by CB Insights stated that the primary reason why their startup failed was due to “disharmony among the team” and that another 23% blamed failure on “not the right team.” However, many founders either don’t know where to start when it comes to finding a co-founder or choose a compatriot that is the wrong fit. In this article, I will cover what to look for in a co-founder and how to find her.Read More
Kauffman Foundation, SURGE, Blink, Global Entrepreneurship Network (Startup Genome), among others all offer individual rankings for the entrepreneurial ecosystems across various regions. Each includes a measure of the density of either high-growth companies or mature ones. The fact is both are important indicators that can also influence another metric — the quality and strength of the workforce.
Given that workers currently spend a median of 4.6 years at a given job (and for ages 25-34 only 3.2 years), in deciding to relocate for a specific opportunity, people often look at what their next jobs may may be within that market. A tipping point occurs for many growing ecosystems such as Chicago and Austin such that there are so many opportunities that attracting talent becomes easier and the population growth accelerates. These opportunities need not only be within startups but often include more mature businesses as well. The transference of work talent spills over in both directions and they catalyze each other.Read More
All startup founders dream of the following scenario: You press the big red “launch” button. Your app (or whatever) goes live. The user counter is spinning like crazy, and your user graph shoots straight up like a rocket. You’re getting so many users that you have to rush to allocate more server power and load-balance like your life depends on it.
Unfortunately, this is what happens to most software startups: You open your app to the public. Realizing that you can’t count on luck to help users find it, you post on Hacker News, Reddit, and Product Hunt. But even that seems insufficient, so you post on Twitter and splash down $1K on Google ads. You track your user graph with anticipation, but all you see is a tiny blip. You panic, “Crap, I just spent the last few months working on my awesome idea, and my friends and family invested more money than they could afford in this venture. I was certain this was going to be a hit, and now I’m going to have to tell them their money is gone. There is no way I’m going to be the next Facebook/Snap/Uber now.”Read More