|Welcome to issue 37 of Founder Weekly. This week's issue is packed with lot of great content. Enjoy the reading!
This post is a break down of where the traffic actually came from and what we learned from the experience so other startups can apply some of our lessons to their own products.
In the digital age, not only is there no such thing as "first mover advantage," Being the last mover often conveys a significant advantage. There's frequently more opportunity and less risk in well-known, mature markets than can be found in new segments or on new platforms. There are several compelling advantages of addressing an older market, along with one, cautionary disadvantage.
A post by Gonzo Arzuaga on what went wrong with Startups.com.
As an entrepreneur, never mind an investor, how do you know whether you are working on a lean idea that will never be anything more than a feature, or a Lean Idea that will evolve into a Big Idea over time, just as Facebook and Twitter did?
Most startups don't fail at building a product. They fail at acquiring customers.
You've quit your job. Your friends and family are behind you. Everyone's waiting for what brilliant thing you've come up with. You quit your job, so it must be a really good idea. But, the truth is you're not so sure it's that brilliant. Somedays you think it's great. Somedays you think it's doomed. So, instead of facing those fears, we could just say we were in "stealth mode".
Building a great team starts with keeping the caliber high for talent so that the team can achieve the impossible, together. Putting the team first means that you'll have to pass on "rockstars" who 1) aren't a cultural fit, 2) don't play a critical role/position on your team; and/or 3) aren't remarkable in their own unique way.
Although every startup is unique, there are certain common avoidable mistakes that can lead to legal complications which jeopardize the long-term success of the business. Like other environments, most legal issues don't result from fraud, but from ignorance on specific requirements, or simply never getting around to doing the things that common sense would tell you to do. Here are five of the most common examples.
Marketing, Sales and PR
Want your story to go viral online? Just follow these three universal story elements, all of which were hardwired into us as the human mind evolved.
Money and Finance
Approaching a well known Silicon Valley angel investor cold with the expectation that they'll fund you, is like walking up to a beautiful stranger and expecting you'll be planning a wedding by the end of the conversation. For the masses, if you want top tier funding, there is a process or roadmap in most cases you can follow (ignore the geniuses and exceptions). Attempting to bypass it shows a lack of consideration and basic intelligence of how the funding process works.
Most Angels fail to get back the capital they've invested (let alone make money), and it's not because they don't pick good companies or back great entrepreneurs -- it's because they're completely mistaken about an Angel's role in the investing cycle. It's about following the rules of the investing ecosystem: Angels get things started, venture capitalists create mature, sustainable businesses, and investment bankers sell them. And if we all play by our roles, we're all going to win.
A followup to the author's last post, VCs are liars
. It explains what both VCs and founders should do if they're looking for a more open environment in those early meetings. At a high level, it's all about improving the relationship and signaling that both parties are willing to both give and receive critical feedback.
But there are firms that were once great and have declined to various extent with the passage of time. There are also VC firms that were once among the industry's elite that no longer exist. You can learn as much from these cautionary tales as you can from the enduring successes, plus studying a broad sample of firms helps avoid drawing false conclusions due to survivorship bias
Pitching venture capitalists or angel investors is nerve-racking. Young entrepreneurs explain trip-ups you should avoid at all costs.
Tips, Tools and Services
Large and small companies alike invest a lot of time and money working on improving their conversion rates. And as we all know, there are countless "experts" and websites all trying to sell you their advice on how to improve conversions. In this post, 54 companies shares with us what has worked for them.
Business planning tool that not only allows you to create your plan, but also allows you to measure, adjust and adapt in real time.
You look at your to-do at the end of the day and--gulp--only the inconsequential tasks are crossed off. That's mismanaging priorities. Here's how to get them in order.
Competitions, Accelerators and Hackathons
Happening this August 4th and 5th, eCommerce Hack Day will bring together developers and designers at The Hatchery.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is calling for innovators to be part of its Innovation House Study program. The focus of the program is on visual and geospatial data analysis. Select teams will be given $50,000 in funding.
We amplify startups by providing seed funding, access to additional capital, and an unmatched team of mentors and advisors who have a unique connection to media and entertainment. Every company accepted will receive up to $50K in seed funding and free workspace in our community entrepreneur facility in Venice.