Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Friday, December 27, 2013
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Most 12-year-olds love playing videogames -- Thomas Suarez taught himself how to create them. After developing iPhone apps like "Bustin Jeiber," a whack-a-mole game, he is now using his skills to help other kids become developers. (Filmed at TEDxManhattanBeach.)
Posted by ECGMA at 11:27 AM
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Published on Jan 19, 2013
Going Bananas with Guy. This fireside chat with Guy Kawasaki and Mark Fidelman is guaranteed to educate, entertain, and enchant. We'll be covering a wide range of topics from using social media to build a Guy-like platform, the mega battle between Facebook and Google+, Apple versus Android religious issues, and the dumbest things you can do with social media.
Posted by ECGMA at 11:42 AM
Monday, December 9, 2013
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Startups Uncensored is on "How to Build a Great Internet Company". It is an open and frank town-hall conversation with the Docstoc Family. Jason Nazar, CEO of Docstoc interviews different team members of Docstoc to talk about the specific tips and advice on topics such as Product Management & Design, Web Development, BizDev, Content Creation, and much more. This is a unique one of a kind session showcasing many different members of the Docstoc team talking about specific best practices they've developed in each of their disciplines.
Posted by ECGMA at 1:22 PM
You've got your seven figure goal - now how are you going to get there?
Stephanie Mason reached $1 million in her third year of business.Who wants to be a millionaire? Everyone. Setting the goal is the easy part. Working out how to get there: that's trickier.
We asked three business-owners who started from scratch how they cracked it.
Former model, 28-year-old Stephanie Mason, launched her hair-extension business, Showpony Professional, in 2009 and hit turnover of $1 million by year three.
Serial entrepreneur, 32-year-old Glen Carlson, kicked off his 40-week business accelerator program Key Person of Influence three years ago. In just 11 months it hit $1 million in revenue and he's on track to reach $1 million profit next year.
Here are their tips for passing the million-dollar milestones.
1. Be visible
Mason got her hair extensions into salons by “pounding the pavement”. She started with Victoria, built up her territory, and as soon as there was enough business to be able to support a representative she moved on to the next state.
She got a big boost at the 2012 Australian Hair Expo when Showpony was a finalist in the Expo's Business Excellence Awards. “All the salons from around the country go to this event so we were doing demonstrations on the stand all day and the stand was chock-a-block for three days,” she says.
Of course, being visible doesn't just mean showing up in person. In an age where you are your Google profile, you need to be visible in blogs, articles, industry publications or try writing a book, says Carlson.
Kuipers, who has now handed over day-to-day management of his business to his three daughters, still puts energy into keeping the business' brand and social responsibility program visible.
2. Be unique
Identify how your business is different and sell that. For Mason, exploiting a gap she identified in the market has meant investing time in educating salon-owners and the next generation of hairdressers in how to use her products and sell them to their clients.
It's a slow-burn approach, but has created a “loyal following” she says. Now looking at expanding into overseas markets, her starting point will be putting an education team on the ground.
In an industry known for a hard-sell, Carlson takes a different approach and sticks to a single product. “There's a lot of charlatans and, frankly, bullshit artists," he says. "And the typical model is: sell, sell, sell.
“So instead of selling more and more and more to one place we're opening more cities and that's how we're increasing our revenue by growing wide rather than trying to hammer in deep.”
3. Save yourself
Carlson says he is “ruthless” about preserving his time for high-value activities. Anything else gets delegated or systematised. From day one, when he only had $10,000 in the bank, he got a virtual assistant to handle his diary and inbox. “I personally had plenty of time but it was a low-value activity.”
4. Identify door-openers
Carlson's plan of attack? Find partners servicing the same target market where there is no competitive overlap. The proposition involves the partners selling 10-15 reasonably priced tickets to an event for small-business owners. Each partner became a sponsor of the event. The value for KPI? Some of the 500 business owners then choose to sign up to its 40-week program, which generates 90 per cent of KPI's revenue.
“Apart from focusing on the high-value stuff, I think it was the partnerships that gave us the leverage to grow really, really quickly,” says Carlson.
For Mason a significant door-opener was winning the belief and support of Heading Out Hair and Beauty's Caterina Di Biase. She opened the door to the L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, which put Showpony in front of the top 30 salons in Australia.
5. Stay focused
Kuipers puts his success down to "sticking to his knitting", even as his business grew to 20 company trucks and 45 contractor trucks. “A lot of people stray and are always trying to make money here, money there, but we don't. I always believe in keeping to the core business and just keep on improving the systems all the time.”
6. Find a super-model
Business models based on your time will act like brakes when you're racing towards the million-dollar milestone, says Carlson. “If their revenue is attached to their time it is limited.”
7. Look ahead
What's next? Kuipers says he aimed to increase turnover by 8 per cent annually, growing in a sustainable way.
Whether it's introducing a new product line; opening in a new market or looking efficiency improvements, keep moving forward.
Posted by ECGMA at 10:31 AM