“If you don’t understand people, you don’t understand business”, a reasonable claim from Simon Sinek, renowned author of Start With Why, at the beginning of his talk at last year’s 99U conference.
Sinek explains that companies like Apple have been able to build a fanatical following because they understood that business is done through people. People who are looking for connection and meaning.
Simon argues that trust is the foundation of any and all relationships, and that if business fail to create that bond with customers — they will fail to succeed.
Founders who have successfully built a true following have done so by surrounding themselves with people who believe what they believe, and spreading an honest gospel about those values — attracting like-minded
customers people by the millions.
Jason previously founded Smart Bear Software and co-founded ITWatchdogs, both of which were bootstrapped to profitability, grew to millions in revenue, and were sold. He is a mentor at Capital Factory (like TechStars or Y-Combinator in Austin) and the co-host of OnStartups Answers along with Dharmesh Shah. Jason podcasts and blogs about startups and marketing on A Smart Bear and also has recently co-founded his newest startup WP Engine.
About the author: Paul De Joe is the founder at Ecquire, a workflow productivity tool that will add a day back to your week, an EIR at Fairbridge Venture Partners and a key player in three successful startups.
Not all advice is created equal. Sometimes there is a big gap between what we want to hear, and what we need to hear.
In fact, the best advice goes beyond questions about term sheets and viral marketing, and touches on something far more personal – your passion.
Trying to grow your startup to the next level? This infographic from Digital Telepathy shows you how to design for viral growth. Steal tips from experts like Instagram, Quora and Dropbox.
Improve invite conversions by: testing delivery format and testing incentives. [Tweet This]
Design elements that encourage repeat visits: notifications, engagement, and news. [Tweet This]
Make your startup easy to share with: embeddable content, forwarding, and cross-posting. [Tweet This]
How are you encouraging viral growth? Tell us below!
Brian Wong is the CEO of Kiip (pronounced “keep”), a category-creating mobile rewards network that is redefining mobile advertising through an innovative platform that leverages “moments of achievement” in games and apps to simultaneously benefit users, developers and advertisers. Backed by Hummer Winblad, Relay Ventures, True Ventures, Verizon Ventures, and others, the company has raised $15.4 million in funding to date. Kiip has been listed by Forbes as one of the 4 Hot Online Ad Companies to Put on Your Watch List, and been named to the Dow Jones FasTech50 List.
Called the youngest person to ever receive venture capital funding by TechCrunch and the Wall Street Journal, Brian received his Bachelors of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia at age 18, after skipping four K-12 grades. He has been recognized with many awards for his accomplishments and leadership, including: Forbes’ 30 under 30; the Top 20 Under 20 awards for all of Canada; Business Insider’s Top 25 Under 25 in Silicon Valley and 18 Most Important People in Mobile Advertising; Mashable’s Top 5 Entrepreneurs to Watch; and the AdAge Creativity Top 50.
Before starting Kiip, Brian led key publisher and tech partnerships at the social news website Digg.com, where he accelerated the company’s mobile presence by launching the Digg Android mobile app.
Trying to recruit an extraordinary business developer to get more sales? Or maybe a top-notch developer to create an app that will make you millions? Regardless of who you are seeking, the rules of recruiting have changed.
Stuart MacDonald is a digital business guy who loves making customers happy and building great teams. A mentor, investor, consultant and frequent speaker on things digital and entrepreneurial, Stuart is the veteran of several start-ups including starting Expedia.ca in Toronto. Stuart went on from there to become CMO and SVP Packages of Expedia.com in Seattle. He also co-founded mesh, Canada’s web conference discussing how the Internet is impacting how we live and work, and meshmarketing, Canada’s one day digital marketing power conference. Most recently, Stuart joined Freshbooks as the CMO, responsible for marketing, sales, support and revenue.
InDinero founder Jessica Mah makes success look so damn easy.
By age 20, she had already founded several companies and graduated from UC Berkeley. Now, she’s running InDinero, a software platform that helps small businesses manage their finances. She’s raised $1 million, managed a 7 person team, and overseen billions in customer transactions.
Wow, you might think — how’d she do it? She must be a total prodigy, huh?
A startup veteran born and raised in Waterloo, Michael Litt had already tried his hand at day-trading, launched a smartphone teardown blog, started a biodiesel enterprise and started a media company.
Michael went on to co-found Vidyard, a platform designed to solve the problem of implementing video into your landing pages. Vidyard emerged from the Summer 2011 class of Y Combinator and is now serving hundreds of businesses worldwide.
Litt is also co-owner of what is arguably Canada’s most statistically successful home-based entrepreneurial incubator: Batavia House, where he helps startups and up-and-coming entrepreneurs in the Waterloo region.
I want to make a deal with you, my fellow entrepreneurs.
Right here, right now.
We are going to stop putting the terms ‘entrepreneur’ and ‘overnight success’ in the same sentence.
Why? For the same reason that magazines are being pressured to stop photoshopping their models: it sets unrealistic standards and expectations.