Roundup: 13 Inspiring Reads to Celebrate 2013


It’s hard to believe that 2014 is already here. For entrepreneurs, it’s a great time to take a jump and try something new. If you’re thinking about those much-anticipated next steps for your business, here’s some great reading material to guide you. In no particular order, here are Clarity’s top 11 posts from 2013.

1. How to Take an E-commerce Startup to $1M

Post by: Justin Winter, Founder at Diamond Candles

If you had just 18 months to make a million dollars, what would you do? For one entrepreneur, the answer to that question was to sell candles with a twist. Here is how Winter built a $12M run rate for his business in just a year and a half.

2. Four Tips from Founding Engineer at 

Post by: Poornima Vijayashanker, Founder at BizeeBee & Femgineer

Poornima Vijayashanker was the initial engineer at and was pinnacle in building out the product from scratch that eventually lead to the acquisition for $170M by Intuit. Recently, she was listed as one of Inc Magazine’s top women in tech to watch in 2013. In this post, she explores her biggest challenges in product and marketing as well as the best advice she’s received in building BizeeBee. 

3. How Money Can Hurt Employee Motivation 

Post by: Clarity Team

As a startup founder, one of your greatest strengths is the ability to motivate and inspire your team. What you’ll quickly learn is that money isn’t everything. Teams crave something more, and this infographic explains what.

4. Fundraising Tips from the Youngest Person to Raise Venture Capital 

Post by: Brian Wong, Founder at Kiip

Brian’s company is redefining mobile advertising through a rewards-based system. He’s raised more than $15.4 million in funding to date. While he emphasizes that there is no one fundraising strategy, he encourages founders to focus on three business ingredients: vision, people, and market conditions.

5. The Friends Effect: It’s Saving Your Life

Post by: Clarity Team

In your professional life, you strive to be the absolute best at what you do. But here’s your thing. Your education and natural smarts are far from what will help you reach your goals. Hustlers of the world, your friends matter more than you realize. So pick up the phone and call your best friend.

6. Why A/B Testing Is a Complete Waste of Time

Post by: Lars Lofgren, Growth at KISSmetrics

With A/B testing, most people think of headlines, button colors, and layouts. And in the process, we completely miss a much more important kind of testing that fits within your company’s conversion optimization strategy. This post explains how.

7. Serial Entrepreneur Shares His Secret to Making $1M in Revenue 

Post by: Jason Cohen, Founder at WPEngine

Jason has founded more than four startups that have generated more than $1M in revenue. His single most important word of advice? Focus on one thing at a time. Growing startups need to prioritize revenue from the get-go.

8.  Here’s Why Nobody Buys Your Stuff

Post by: Jeremy Schoemaker, Serial Entrepreneur

In the affiliate marketing community, Jeremy Schoemaker is a household name. To date, he has sold more than $50 million in gross product sales (from other people’s stuff). If your sales are struggling, this post will tell you why, step by step.

9. 23 Entrepreneurs Share Top Lessons Learned

Post by: Clarity Team

What’s better than advice from one top entrepreneur? Advice from 23. Nobody becomes an entrepreneur because it’s easy. What these business leaders share in common is that they’re driven by an unstoppable dream. It’s a life calling, not a career. We hold ourselves to relentlessly high standards, and when we fall, we fall hard. Luckily, we can learn from the folks who have been there before.

10. The Journey to Product Market Fit 

Post by: Ellie Cachette, Founder at ConsumerBell

Half the battle of starting a company is just getting started. There’s one hurdle that even the smartest founders need to overcome: product to market fit. Every founder hears about this topic, but what exactly does it mean? Here is how Ellie Cachette powered through that journey.

11. Why Women Founders Matter 

Post by: Shaherose Charania, Co-founder at Women 2.0

In the last 15 years alone, the number of female-run businesses grew by 54%.  Women are changing the face of the global economy, but here’s the thing. Only 3% of technology startups in Silicon Valley are started by women. Where are all the women?

12. Breaking Down the Methodology Behind Word of Mouth Marketing 

Post by: Clarity Team

You launch a blog, invest in your fan community, and start promoting your writing. Why aren’t people coming? Word of mouth generates more than twice the sales of paid advertising in categories as diverse as skincare and mobile phones. This post walks you through the concept.

13. 3 Ways Focus Will Get You to Your First 100 Customers 

Post by: Seth Berman, VP of Marketing at Flywheel & Former Director of Marketing at BabyCenter

In this post, Seth Berman shares his experiences about growing BabyCenter, the #1 mobile and web pregnancy and parenting destination, to millions of customers. He points out that focus can be a startup’s biggest competitive advantage. Position your project to change the world.

Which post was your favorite? If you saw something you love on this list, make sure to share it.

Thanks again to Clarity’s experts for an amazing 2013.  It’s because of you that our vision has come this far. Cheers to an even better 2014. 

Photo Credit: Kamil Martinovsky/Shutterstock

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