Weekly Roundup July 27, 2013: M. Andreessen, F. Wilson, S. Blank, Lean Startup, Growth, Leadership, Mobile Marketing, Growth Hacking, Conversions, and More
In the spirit of the Lean startup methodology and MVP iterations, we are streamlining the previous Wiki, Lexicon and Library into a single entry point that will become a Terms Library, including a selection of the best links for each one of them (it has a built-in wiki too). Professor Tom Eisenmann, of the Harvard Business School Rock Center for Entrepreneurship has kindly agreed to let me insert into the SUM Library his collection of about 450 curated links from 4 years of monitoring articles related to managing startups. This is a works-in-progress, and we expect to have it completed within a week.
Here are 2 sample pages, so you can see where it’s going:
Going forward, my curation will be tighter and more stringent, as I will primarily pick content that is either original, influential or additive to the existing state of knowledge about Startup Entrepreneurship. Here’s the roundup…
My post Don’t Let Lean Become a Crutch is going viral today on Twitter, thanks to re-tweets from Dave McClure and Brad Feld. You need to read it, and discuss it.
Fred Wilson says Growth is Bitch (he means “rate” of growth). Semil Shah says We need to have a debate about Growth, and I’m saying Growth is Growth: It’s not a Debate, and it’s not a Bitch.
Arnold Waldstein reminds us to go Back to marketing basics, although it’s not that easy. And I dive into Five Marketing Activities that even Successful Startups Botch Up.
Lindsey Gurian from the OpenView blog has 3 questions to ask a prospective sales person job candidate, prior to nailing their compensation, in What Do Your Sales Candidates and Rappers Have in Common? And Martin Zwilling covers sales basics in 7 Steps to Outstanding Sales Growth for Your Startup.
Peter Levine has Lessons in Leadership From Warlord 6: A Chat With Lieutenant General John Vines. One of them is: “The higher up the organization, the more time leaders should be spending with people in the organization as opposed to doing ‘tasks’”. True that management borrows from the military on leadership.
Tomasz Tunguz thinks that Product Market Engagement is The Missing Step in Lean Startup Methodology, between Customer Validation and Creation.
Francis Pedraza wrote a long missive Lean Startups fail for these 3 reasons, they didn’t tell you in the book (or at some conference). And two weeks ago, Dan Norris of Informly wrote, Is startup validation bullshit? Both make the point that you can still fail, even with a Lean approach. True, but I would argue that you could hardly succeed without it.
Josh Ledgard, on the KissMetrics blog has A Simple Guide to Increasing Customer Lifetime Value: Focus on the First 5 Minutes, saying that when users see immediate results, “this gives them the impression that they could be even more successful as time goes on.” True, but I would shrink that time to 1-2 mins for consumer apps. Josh learned this technique while he worked at Microsoft, so that probably explains the 5 minutes.
Jason Cohen takes us through the math of SaaS financial metrics, in The unprofitable SaaS business model trap. It’s a Must Read if you’re in the SaaS business, especially the discussion.
There is a Science Behind Team Spirit, according to this Startup Research paper. And Tanmay Vora at Qaspire has an exhaustive list on How to build a great team and Culture? 60 pointers.
Ted Nash has some useful Growth Hacking Notes.
Predictive Analytics is not new, but Puneet Mehta says it’s on the rise with marketers, allowing them to know what their customers are going to do before they actually do it, Prediction is the new black: The latest trend in marketing.
Steve Blank reminds us that An MVP is not a Cheaper Product, It’s about Smart Learning. And in a post on Startup Lessons Learned, Lean Startup is being used Beyond Tech, citing examples in government, transportation, education, and public health.
Why traditional marketing theories don’t apply to mobile apps is an excellent primer by Kontagent. Why You Should Be Doing Mobile Marketing, If You Aren’t Already by Kim Cohen makes the case for it. Just in case you didn’t get the Facebook memo that mobile advertising is big, Howard Lindzon telegraphs it, with What if Facebook Figures out Mobile? Finally, Semil Shah observes from personal experience that there is a Cliff caused by Mobile App Requirements.
Jason Fried explains Why we’re doing things that don’t scale, an indirect response to Paul Graham’s previous tirade. Steve Blank has a Wall Street Journal article, Defining the Roles of Founders, where he reminds us- “an idea is not a company.” And Dr. Jeff Cornall asks the age-old question, Can Entrepreneurs Make Good Managers?, noting that the skills for each are different.
Dharmesh Shah asks what is The Most Important Word When Building Your Personal Brand?, and Mark Suster goes further by saying the If you Don’t Define Your Personal Brand The Market Will. Personal branding is different from company branding, but there are some parallels to get inspired from.
Kevin Kain segments the 4 ways for Distributing Content Through Paid Media, which was an excellent follow-up to his explanation of Distributing Content with Paid, Owned, and Earned Media (great primer).
Des Traynor at Intercom.io proposes using the “5 Whys” technique to Analyzing Abandonment in your Product. And Sanket Patel explains in great details that it’s the “rate” of conversion that matters most, in Explained: Conversion Rate Optimization.
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Startup Management is a single destination for the best content on management, strategy, organizational and marketing topics, including business models, revenue models and go-to-market approaches for startups and grownups. We mix curated, aggregated and original content, a tagged library of knowledge, a wiki, and links to videos and books, allowing you to quickly find what you need to know on-demand, on-the-job, and on the blogs.
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