Atlanta’s Start-Up Council

Today I had the opportunity to spend time with Genna Keller of the PR firm Trevellino/Keller. Genna has been active in the Atlanta tech startup community since the late 1990s and has a wealth of experience. One of the great things her firm spearheads is the Start-Up Council which provides a feedback roundtable for free…

Online Lead Generation

Today I had lunch with an entrepreneur that is an expert at online lead generation. Like him, I also believe that online lead generation is an untapped opportunity for most companies. The great thing about generating leads online is that there are several ways to do it, many of which have a strong ROI. Let’s…

Physical Products in a Digital World

Today I had the opportunity to have lunch with two entrepreneurs that have invented physical products, one related to adults and sleeping and the other related to kids and sleeping. The great thing about it was that both guys had the following in common: They invented their respective products to solve their own problems They…

The Five Fs of Web Content

For entrepreneurs looking to grow their business (who isn’t!), I think one of most under-appreciated marketing and lead generation tactic is to generate inbound leads through traffic from search engines. Of course, one of the biggest drivers for ranking well in search engines, along with links to your site from other sites, is to have high quality…

The Test of Faith for Startups

According to Wikipedia, faith is defined as follows: the confident belief or trust in the truth or trustworthiness of a person, concept or thing. Yup, sounds about right when describing what it takes to succeed with a startup. Of course I’m talking about innovative and not replicative entrepreneurs. For entrepreneurs and their startups, faith is a critical element. There…

What Startups Can Learn from the NCAA Basketball Tournament

With the NCAA basketball tournament under way, and Butler pulling out the big upset over Syracuse tonight , it makes sense to talk about startups and basketball. Basketball, when compared to other sports like baseball or football, makes a great case that a team with more camaraderie and chemistry can out perform more talented teams. Let’s look…

Telling the Startup Story

By now, we’ve probably all heard the eBay story that the founder started it because he wanted a way to help his girlfriend find Pez dispensers online. Well, did you know that was made up? That’s right, those PR folks were looking for a good, memorable story and delivered. Politicians do it all the time. I do…

Defining a Successful Business

People constantly throw around the term “successful business” or “successful startup”, but I bet if you ask 10 entrepreneurs how they define success, you’ll get 10 different answers. I typically like to ask the following question: how do you define success? Here’s how I define a successful business: $1 million+ in annual gross margin (difference…

The Startup’s Siren Call of California

Back in late 2003, a few years after I’d started my company, I got down on myself questioning the amount of progress we’d made on the business. I had two full-time employees with a couple of interns and I just wasn’t satisfied with how fast things were growing. Revenues were increasing nicely on a percentage…