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Article10 Aspects of Starting Up That You Shouldn’t Dread

10 Aspects of Starting Up That You Shouldn’t Dread

Question: What is one part of starting up that was easier than you anticipated?

Finding a Support Network

“A support network of other entrepreneurs will make any journey a lot more enjoyable—and a lot easier, too! By joining key networking groups, like YEC, and moving into a co-working space, building a support group of like-minded entrepreneurs after starting ZinePak was easier than I would have imagined. I never expected to make so many close friends so quickly!”

Brittany Hodak
ZinePak
@brittanyhodak

Forming the Business Entity

“What I initially believed would be the most difficult part about starting a business for myself, which I would say is the process of coming up with and registering a name, filling out the prope...



ArticleReveal: See Your Industry’s Landscape with Competitive Intelligence

Reveal: See Your Industry’s Landscape with Competitive Intelligence

There are weapons, and there are weapons made with plutonium. Well, there is competitive intelligence, and there is the competitive intelligence made by Knowlium.

Knowlium is the maker of the competitive intelligence software called Reveal – a product that “accelerates your digital strategy with real-time competitive insight.”

Here’s a quick rundown of what the Reveal competitive intelligence software covers:

  • Brand Monitoring
  • Content Marketing
  • SEO Analysis
  • Benchmarking
  • Social Media Analysis
  • Influencer Analysis

Which is to state matters very very simply. You must have a look for yourself to appreciate the comprehensiveness and sophistication with which Reveal processes data. If you want simple scores to understand your market position com...



ArticleHow Do I Pitch Friends and Family for Money?

How Do I Pitch Friends and Family for Money?

There it is:

That super awkward moment when we're about to turn the conversation with our rich Uncle Mortimer from "Well it's been great catching up on my new startup" to "Hey would you mind investing some of your hard-earned money into this venture?"

So how do we ask friends and family for money without it getting totally weird?

Is there a way to "pitch" that doesn't leave both sides feeling uncomfortable every Thanksgiving?

It's not what we ask, it's how we ask

There are lots of different ways to ask for money, and most of them are really awful.

What we want to do is position the ask in a way that makes it clear we're asking for money, but also clear that it's not more important than the relationship.

Look for buying clues first

Befor...



ArticleSimple Ways to Create Delightful, Cross-Device Experiences

Simple Ways to Create Delightful, Cross-Device Experiences

It’s a crazy, multi-device world.

According to one report from Facebook, 60% of online adults in the U.S. and U.K. use at least two devices each day, meaning that mobile is at the epicenter of many brands’ marketing, sales, and product strategies.

This trend creates a window of opportunity for companies that are looking to reach audiences at multiple points in their buyer journeys. The challenge, however, is that mass-market tools and analytics technologies haven’t caught up—basic reports in Google Analytics only provide aggregate-level traffic data, for instance. It’s tough to dissect the steps that your audiences are taking to become customers and repeat customers.

Despite this lack of transparency, one concept holds tried and true: you’r...



ArticleHow to Stop Company-Wide Games of Telephone

How to Stop Company-Wide Games of Telephone

Imagine stumbling across a Glassdoor review of your company filled with damaging declarations and seemingly unfounded statements. You’d be shocked, right? I know I was.

Our former employee’s description seemed so foreign, I didn’t recognize the company being described. According to the review, we were growing too fast, too furiously; we were operating in a knee-jerk manner.

It was clear the past employee wasn’t aware that we look to hyper-vet everything we do. Decisions are hardly made on whims; they’re quite nuanced. Of course, none of that matters to employees if they’re not hearing the truth.

What had happened? To make a long story short, complete miscommunication on our part.

We’re not the only business that’s dealt with miscommunicati...



ArticleSales Funnel Optimization with Hiten Shah

Sales Funnel Optimization with Hiten Shah

Hiten Shah, Co-Founder of Quick Sprout, KISSmetrics and Crazy Egg, is a proven sales and growth expert. His years of experience founding, advising, investing in or working with startups have crystallized into a wealth of knowledge about how to grow a successful company.

If you have the time, watch the video below to hear Hiten reflect on how he thinks about sales funnels. To help you out, we’ve outlined the major points below for your easy perusal, as well as provided some foundational information about sales funnels to further illuminate Hiten’s point of view.

Hiten explains that essentially, a sales funnel is the “step-by-step process of things your user or customer does to accomplish a goal.” You may not think that your customers go th...



ArticleReady for Anything: Kapture and the Importance of Evolving with the Market — Interview with Mike Sarow, CEO and Co-Founder of Kapture

Ready for Anything: Kapture and the Importance of Evolving with the Market — Interview with Mike Sarow, CEO and Co-Founder of Kapture

“Sometimes your spidey sense is like, ‘I don’t know if either one of these are right,’ but you have to go somewhere. Spinning your wheels, being in neutral? That’s bad.”

When you hear Founders out in the media talking about their product, most of what you hear them talk about is all the things that went right: the hypotheses that were confirmed, the “ahah” moments where all the pieces fell into place.

Founders Don’t Discuss The things they didn’t know

What you don’t hear most Founders talking about: all the things they didn’t know – the times a big bet didn’t pay off, the times when what you thought was true turned out not to be the case, the times when the market turned on a dime and suddenly everything you...



ArticleStartup Founders’ Guide to Hustling a Conference

Startup Founders’ Guide to Hustling a Conference

Here is Clarity.fm’s list of the top conferences for entrepreneurs in North America. These events are the ideal venues to gain exposure, make connections, and get inspired.

But we know that the decision to invest your precious time and money into attending a conference, or any event, is not one that many entrepreneurs take lightly. So, to help you make the most out of your trip, we’ve put together a list of some of the things that you should consider before, during, and after the event.

A True Hustler Prepares

The real conference hustling begins weeks before you arrive at the event. Conferences are a whirlwind of activity often compressed into a few short days, meaning that to make the most out of your stay, you need to come prepared....



ArticleIs Networking a Waste of Time?

Is Networking a Waste of Time?

"I'm seeing these events and groups popping up everyone asking me to network with other Founders, other marketers, devs, growth hackers, or anyone else in the startup community.

Between all the events, conferences, groups and whatnot — should I be spending my valuable time network or just focusing on my startup?"

If you have to ask, the answer is "No"

Most networking is a waste of time.

That's not because having a useful professional network isn't helpful, it's because how we often go about it is really unfocused.

Avoid random networking events

Sure, it's possible that if we go to SXSW we might happen to run into someone that can somehow be useful... someday...maybe.

But wouldn't it make more sense to put that time and expense toward set...



ArticleCan Doing Non-Startup Stuff Help My Startup?

Can Doing Non-Startup Stuff Help My Startup?

Sometimes the best way to grow our startups is to spend some time doing stuff that has nothing to do with our startups!

It sounds easy to do and yet so many of us have a huge issue with getting outside our own startup bubble.

But what if we knew that time away was the key to actually making our startup grow faster?

The problem with "startup all the time"

Aside from the obvious challenges around things like burnout, being focused exclusively on our startups prevents us from getting some new perspectives that we would have otherwise missed.

Whether it's that passing thought during meditation, that interesting point another Founder made at dinner, or the inspiration we got when we were sitting on a beach staring at the sun — our time away fro...



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