2018

The Moments that Define Investor and Founder Relationships

This is going to be BIG.

In almost every single investment I’ve ever made, I can think of a singular moment in my relationship with a founder that, no matter what came before or what might come after, defined our relationship. Often times, it came in a very vulnerable and down moment for the founder—perhaps they just lost out on a big opportunity, had someone from the team leave, or they’re running low on capital before sales have come around.

Remind Me Why I Love You? (Why “In Person” is Everything)

Both Sides of the Table

You had an amazing meeting with an investor. Your product demo crushed. The dialog was great. They told you how much they loved your space. The meeting was only supposed to last 45 minutes but you ran 90. The assistant tried to end the meeting twice but was shoooshed away. You race back to the office to tell everybody how well it went and you wait for the follow-up call to have a partners’ meeting or talk about term sheets or at least dip into due diligence. One week. Two weeks. Oh, fork.

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A Scorecard: Should a decision be fast, or slow?

A Smart Bear

We all know that startups should make decisions quickly. Fast decisions leads to rapid action, which accelerates the loop of production and feedback, which is how you outpace and out-learn a competitor, even one that already has a lead. But some decisions should not be made in haste, like a key executive hire , or how to price , or whether to raise money, or whether to invest millions of dollars in a new product line.

Selling your business? Find the emotional buyer

Berkonomics

This is one of my favorite insights, since I lived this one in a positive exit from my computer business. Types of business buyers expanded. Most people will tell you that there are two kinds of eventual buyers for your business: financial and strategic. A financial buyer will analyze your numbers, past and forecast, to the n’th degree, and calculate the price based upon the result, after carefully comparing your numbers with those of others in the same and similar industries.

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7 Ways to Supercharge Your ABM Strategy with Real-Time Intent

Streaming real-time intent is a homerun for marketing and sales’ account-based marketing (ABM) strategies—the ultimate competitive advantage. With the help of the fastest, most frictionless way to target strategic accounts with in-the-moment behavioral data, marketers can reach prospects at the very beginning of their buyer’s journey. Even before they’ve engaged with any sales or marketing channels. With real-time buyer insights, you can be first-in-line to provide solutions and lead better, hyper-personalized conversations, helping you prioritize sales outreach with companies that are ready to buy.

How a Little Bit of Fear Breeds Innovation

Entrepreneurs' Organization

Co-founder of Owned Outcomes Krupa Srinivas explores the value of fear in an entrepreneur’s journey as she describes partnering with a US healthcare intermediary to solve the problem of cataloguing hospital supplies.

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Simone Musgrave - Grit, Sales, and using Femininity in business.

Startup Grind

Aneme Dlamini of Startup Grind chats to Simone Musgrave of Musgrave Gin about perseverance, building an actual business, and bringing your femininity as a force to be reckoned with in the business world. Aneme = A, Simone = S A : Welcome! S : Thanks. A : So, I am not going to go with the traditional ‘background story’ (laughs), I am sure you’ve been asked that many times. S : I have, yeah (laughs). A : Cool. So, to jump right in, you left the food industry after 13 years.

Looking Back On Tech, Startups, And VC In 2018

Haystack

It’s that time of year, time to look back and reflect on the most significant storylines in the tech, startup, and VC world. A comprehensive post on this topic could be 5,000+ words, but we do not do such things here. We kept detailed notes month by month and today, I tried to organize them by key sections, what you’ll see below.

Matrix Growth Academy – Zero to 100 Videos

For Entrepreneurs

Matrix Growth Academy – Zero to 100 was an educational event held in San Francisco, aimed at providing B2B Founders with a road-map for how to get from Zero to a repeatable, scalable and profitable growth process that would take them to $100m in revenue. Please find below the primary videos for They have been. Startup Help

Congrats to a Former Student Making The World A Better Place

Paul G. Silva

So much food goes to waste in our country every year. So many people are hungry. It is literally cheaper to throw food away than to give it away… until now. A few years ago I had the honor of mentoring Maria Rose Belding when she and her partners at Means Database were in the Valley Venture Mentors startup Accelerator. Her social venture is organized and dreams like a high tech silicon valley startup – but all of that energy is directed to doing good, at scale.

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4 Data-Driven Steps To Drive Successful B2B Demand Generation

Entering a new demand gen position in a volatile market is nerve-wracking. All eyes are on you to make an impact — fast. That’s where your data comes in. In demand generation, data is essential for knowing who you should target and how. In this eBook, you’ll learn how to identify and target your ideal prospects — when they’re most receptive to hearing your message — using different types of data.

Should You Try For a Spot in a Business Incubator? The Pros and Cons

Turnkey

Business incubators can be very enticing for new entrepreneurs. They promise things like an instant mentorship network, camaraderie with other startup owners, shared resources like office space, and even the potential for funding. However, before you dive into the application process for any business incubator, there are several things to consider. First of all, although … Continue reading Should You Try For a Spot in a Business Incubator? The Pros and Cons → BUSINESS

One Reason Why Your Technical Recruiting Isn't Working

This is going to be BIG.

Time and time again, I hear how hard of a time startups are having recruiting, especially for software developers. While candidate quality is sometimes an issue, or culture fit, or some other quality, most of the time the issue is that the company just isn't getting enough people into the top of the funnel. When I was a startup founder, I had this same issue. That's when I had a conversation with Max Ventilla, the founder of AltSchool, who at the time was running Aardvark.

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How to Out Amazon, Amazon

Both Sides of the Table

There has always been tension between CPG (consumer packaged goods) companies and the retailers who sell their products to consumers. If a consumer will pay a fixed price for a product or service then the battle over who gets the margin in any sale is between the person who merchandises a product and the person who manufactures it. This is an age-old marketplace tension where leverage often determines the value captured. This is true whether it’s physical products or media products.

WP Engine passes $100M in revenue and secures $250M investment from Silver Lake

A Smart Bear

People said there’s no money in hosting. WordPress is just a toy. After the success of Smart Bear, I should be setting my sights on something big, not this. I’m sure people said similar things to Heather when she joined as our CEO. The Silicon Valley-oriented technology press outlets don’t cover us because we’re not in San Francisco, even though we’re more successful than most of the startups they cover.

16 Go-to-Market Plays for Your Entire Sales Funnel

After gathering some of the best go-to-market plays from our own B2B sales and marketing pros, we've package them here for you. Try one of these 16 plays in your next salesflow or as inspiration for your next winning sales engagement strategy.

25 education trends for 2018

eSchool News

Year after year, educators and those invested in education love to speculate about what will take off in the near future. And as far as riveting news goes, nothing quite peaks the interest like new trends that have the potential to fundamentally change learning. In almost all of the commentary from both educators and industry, the mention of AR and VR for 2018’s big trends were ubiquitous.

How Entrepreneurship is Changing Our World: A Localized Perspective

Entrepreneurs' Organization

Written for EO by Michael Neidert, a writer and consultant. . Entrepreneurship is difficult in any part of the world, but entrepreneurs in developing nations face an especially steep uphill climb.

Engaging with the startup community: in conversation with Reece Walker and William McCullough

Startup Catalyst

We got in touch with Reece Walker and William McCullough, two lawyers from McCullough Robertson, to chat about their journeys. We talked about how startups have changed over the last few years, what support has meant to them, Startup Catalyst missions and their impact, as well as ways to get involved in the startup community. In Conversation with Reece and Will. We had a conversation with Reece and Will and what you’ll see below is a summary of that conversation.

Tech Startups Are Changing Education For The Better

Startup Grind

In the last decade, we have been able to see an immense growth of technology involvement in education. We're not only talking about using computers in the classroom anymore. Technology, big data and the Internet have started revolutionizing every aspect of education in the recent years. Of course, students are benefiting the most from this technology boom, but they're not the only ones.

The 5 Stages of Account-Based Marketing — and How to Win Them All

Successfully complete the five stages of ABM: define, identify, engage, convert, and connect. We’ll show you how to create a unified system with your sales team to help them land more qualified opportunities and connect with prospects like never before.

The Breakout Tech Company Of 2018

Haystack

It’s that time of year, where I — as a committee of one judge, me — select one startup in the tech ecosystem that “broke out” and has the makings of an even larger outcome should things continue to go right. As a little tradition on this blog, I’ve singled out companies starting in 2013 with Stripe ; there was Snap back in 2014; Slack in 2015; took a break in 2016, as I wasn’t inspired to select one then; and last year, 2017, was Coinbase.

How to Replicate Amazon’s Success in Rising Cities

Revolution

Since the rumor mill started regarding the final Amazon HQ2 selections, I have been fielding questions about the validity of the Rise of the Rest thesis. Do Amazon’s selections mean that Rise of the Rest cities will never access the tech economy in a meaningful way? Does it mean that big tech will always choose to invest in coastal cities, further enriching strong startup ecosystems?

Entrepreneurs give me hope when I need it most

Paul G. Silva

When I talk about politics I am filled with sadness and a sense of near powerlessness to make the world a better place. But when I talk to entrepreneurs, I am filled with hope. Where most of us see problems, they imagine solutions… and solutions that scale. Here are just some of the companies blowing me away, all local/ VVM companies making the world a better place! Immigration.

Childcare in a Coworking Space? Here’s How Some Companies are Making it Work

Turnkey

Flexible and remote jobs have broad appeal in today’s economy, but they’re especially enticing to parents. This demographic values the ability to make their own schedules so they can accommodate their children’s naptimes, doctor’s appointments, and school pickups. However, working from home can be isolating, and these parents usually still need regular child care to … Continue reading Childcare in a Coworking Space? Here’s How Some Companies are Making it Work → OFFICE SPACE

The Ultimate Guide to Executive Recruiting

Sourcing the right executive candidates and filling key managerial roles in an organization can be difficult, even in the best of times. Download this eBook to level up your discovery process, talent sourcing, and strategies for reaching your best-fit candidates.

Preparing to Start a Company

This is going to be BIG.

It’s that time of year again—the season of people quitting their jobs soon to start a company. I don’t know whether it’s New Years resolutions or end of year bonuses, but I feel like there’s a bit of a peak in people wrapping up previous things looking to start something new.

What Can You Learn From Ring’s Astounding Success?

Both Sides of the Table

Many people will write the history on why Ring became an enormously successful company and why it became a real-world unicorn in a world when many startups are anointed that merely on paper. Since I had a ringside seat to the company before it really existed all the way through the end I thought I’d offer my version and what I think it means for our future.

When “fits and starts” is the most efficient path

A Smart Bear

You roll down the windows and wear a helmet when you take your car to the track. This does not make me less terrified of a fiery death. The American Autocross champion was sitting in my passenger seat screaming at me to not let my foot off the pedal until I bounced off the RPM limiter. She was properly intense. I didn’t know what I was doing, but it’s fun to power through curves in a high-speed tenuously-controlled skid in my Mini Cooper S (plus Cooperworks).

Take advantage of the good times to build stakeholder loyalty.

Berkonomics

Loyalty is a hard-earned commodity. There are several times when stakeholder loyalty is tested to the limit. For employees, a late or missed payroll is the ultimate test of corporate loyalty, divorced even from an employee’s ability to make do without a paycheck. For investors, a subsequent down round at a lower valuation than the last, or an exit opportunity at a loss are all opportunities for the affected stakeholder to show a side that can sometimes shock an entrepreneur or CEO.

12 Plays to Kickstart Your Recruitment Process

To stay ahead in this race, every recruiter needs a good playbook. In this eBook, we lay out 12 recruiting plays that can automate key steps in your recruitment process, helping you reduce both the cost and the time it takes to hire the best candidates.