What Motivates You?

As the new year is almost upon us, my family and friends bring up the ubiquitous New Year’s Resolutions as a good topic for conversation. After listening to some resolutions, it got me to thinking that these are a good proxy for what motivates people. Really, think about it, what motivates you? The popular How…

Product Community Tools

Continuing with the topic from yesterday on Tools for Product Communities, let’s look at some example products from the different categories: Knowledge base Tender Support Helpstream Message board / forum Ninja Post Tender Support eCrowds Jive Software Helpstream Idea exchange Get Satisfaction eCrowds UserVoice Blog WordPress TypePad eCrowds Please let me know what other tools…

Tools for Product Communities

One of the challenges for a growing company is to put processes and procedures in place to systematize how the organization operates. The idea is to add some level of reproducibility of what goes on so as to be able to scale to a company size that is many times larger. An area that is especially ripe…

Sales and Marketing Execution

This afternoon, I talked with a friend of mine about his web-based startup idea. He has five years of experience running a labor-intensive small business and he’s ready for a change. Naturally, building a web application and using his expertise to improve the industry with his domain experience makes the most sense. We got to…

The Trouble With Yahoo! Mail Forwarding

As commonly happens, I’m called in to help with IT challenges at my dad’s house over the holidays. I’m happy to help and am always curious about what new issues have arisen. Yesterday, the goal was to help him configure email on his new iPhone 3GS. He had just purchased it the day before due…

App Store Top Downloads

Building on my previous post about the frictionless Apple App Store, another key benefit of the App Store is the top downloads section. The user interface is divided into paid and free apps, making it easy to browse popular applications and try them out (the free ones). Here are some benefits of this strategy: Empower…

One Page Outline

One of the tactics I’m a fan of is putting together a one page outline as a basis for a conversation or partnership. The general idea is to just jot down ideas in a bulleted, outline format so that one or more parties are prepared for a discussion, and to use it as a basis…

International Partnership Considerations

When a new product shows signs of taking off, inevitably companies and entrepreneurs in other countries will take note and reach out to form a distribution partnership. Having a distributor can really help startups generate revenue without significant capital outlays. Let’s look at a few considerations for international partnerships: Geographic Exclusivity – this is a…

Cumulative Advantage for Entrepreneurs

I just started reading the book SuperFreakonomics today and at the beginning they talk about how the success of their first book, Freakonomics, has made finding material for their second book so much easier as readers bring ideas to them. The term cumulative advantage, in the economics profession, describes a situation where previous accomplishments result…