Tag Archives: Start Up

Three More Testimonials

Testimonial letter from Henry Scadding (1883)

Testimonial letter from Henry Scadding (1883) (Photo credit: Toronto Public Library Special Collections)

One of the factors of any entrepreneur starting a business is getting testimonials, those comments from customers that tell others of the value of your work.

What most budding entrepreneurs do not understand is that the relationship between both business and their customer and vendors is essential, and missing this vital aspect of building a business becomes missed opportunities for future business and growth.

Too often budding entrepreneurs act like sponges, willing to take as much free stuff as possible with little to give back or share. One of the simplest acts to get noticed for your business is….

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Get crowdsourced funding via Kickstarter.com

Here’s a unique idea for those startup entrepreneurs that want to get funded, but not by the normal routes: crowdsourcing.

Check out Kickstarter.com‘s web site for more info about getting crowds to fund your startup or your project from the “worlds of music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields.”

Oh, and if you want to help local startups, check out Kickstarter’s Denver projects.

Better yet, sign up and see if you can get funding.

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Founder-led companies versus “Professional CEOs”

When startup entrepreneurs go for “funding” of their business, product, or service, there’s a general idea that founder-led companies might not be “up to the task” as “professional CEOs.”

Well, the data is in and the answer is: Founder-led CEOs WIN!

Check out this article Why startup founders can make solid CEOs at CNN Money. Here’s the significant quote from a 2005 study:

Founder-led companies had a market-adjusted return of 12% over the course of three years and a survival rate of 73%, compared with a return of -26% and a survival rate of 60% for firms that hired a new CEO…

What are your thoughts?

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Low job prospects presses individuals into entrepreneurship

selfmade image of U.S. Unemployment rate from ...

Image via Wikipedia

Is this the new economy reality? Read this article post from Impact Labs entitled Jobs of the Future Will Not Support Basic Standard of Living in U.S., it’ll make you think.

As the economy limps along and long term prospects of finding a job gets slimmer, people are being pressed into entrepreneurship. The Kauffman Foundation has a post that outlines the numbers, ‘Jobless Entrepreneurship’ Tarnishes Steady Rate of U.S. Startup Activity, Kauffman Study Shows. Here’s a quote:

According to the “Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity,” a leading indicator of new business creation in the United States, 0.34 percent of American adults created a business per month in 2010, or 565,000 new businesses, a rate that remained consistent with 2009 and represents the highest level of entrepreneurship over the past decade and a half.

 

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Entrepreneurs are money thrifty, not spendthrift nor miserly

When it comes to startup entrepreneurs, most work at keeping their costs down in order to make their finances last. But most entrepreneurs have a different mindset than those that work at jobs, or even some business owners that still have the job mentality. Entrepreneurs think thrift, economical, and frugal, but not cheapskate or miserly. Let’s take a look at the definitions first.

Definitions:

  • The definition of being thrifty: |ˈθriftē| adjective ( thriftier , thriftiest ) (of a person or their behavior) using money and other resources carefully and not wastefully.
  • The definition of miser: |ˈmīzər| a person who hoards wealth and spends as little money as possible.
  • The definition of a spendthrift |ˈspen(d)ˌθrift|a person who spends money in an extravagant, irresponsible way.

Now, what’s the difference in their view of money?

There are two perspectives in how you see money:

  1. Save money or spend money to make money.
  2. Save money only.

What sparked this post was having a conversation with a fellow entrepreneur. The discussion was around spending money, specifically spending $5,000 just to watch another highly successful business person at work, no discussion or asking questions.

Would you spend that $5,000?

A person that has a job mentality or only saving money probably will not. Sometimes a business owner that has not mentally switched from job thinking to business ownership thinking would not either. You know, these “business owners” just switched from earning a paycheck to a higher paying job with more responsibilities. No business owner thinking here.

The business owner in our discussion that spent $5,000 stated that within five minutes of watching the more successful business person at work saw how he could save $2,500 right away in their own business. That’s a business owner thinking.

So, next time someone asks you to pay for their advice, let’s say $60 (or $1 a minute) for an hour worth of advice, ask yourself this:

  • Will I save at least $60 or more in time and money with the advice I’m being given? If less than than, no, if more than that, pay the person.
  • For every $1 invested to get at least $1 in ROI is not bad, but don’t short the advice giver either. Why? And here’s the kicker: is that a one time savings, i.e. a one time investment of money, or is the savings over many weeks and months? How many times will that savings pay off? Five times? 10? 100?
  • If I charge $120 an hour to do something, do I save at least 30 minute worth of my time or more? How many times do I save these dollars over the course of a week? Month? Or year?

Never be a spendthrift, a person who spends money in an extravagant, irresponsible way, or a miser/piker/scrooge who will keep the money to themselves, because what reputation will you gain from this?

A great entrepreneur will pay for the savings realized, so let’s invest our money as good entrepreneurs, especially those that give us good advice by paying them for that advice.

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Have 15 minutes? Read this quick advertising guide

Startup entrepreneurs don’t have time or money to waste. OnStartup.com has a quick blog post The 5 Minute Guide To Cheap Startup Advertising (sorry it takes longer than five minutes) that gives a quick understanding about advertising. Take a quick read, it’s worth the time.

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