47 Hats

Content Marketing for Startups

47 Hats

Time and time again I’ve watched this story play out. A brilliant developer builds software to scratch their own itch, fill the gap, change the world. They toil away nights, weekends, before they go off to their day jobs, every spare minute because their driven to build that software. And then they finish. And the awful reality sets in: now they have to get customers. They have to — eww! — market.

Share or Create?

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Multi-billion member social networks, robots that can chase you down , algorithms that decide whether you get to live or die. Just a few high points to the world that’s fast approaching.

Trending Sources

New Twitter tools for Startups in 2012

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With something north of 10,000 Twitter related tools, services, and apps, it’s very easy to become overwhelmed and undermotivated looking for tools to help your startup. Here’s 5 new Twitter tools I’d recommend, and why. Buffer. What: Repeat your tweets so more people see them.

Are your customers in enough pain?

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Let me let you in on a little startup secret: you want your prospective customers in pain. Lots of pain. Really suffering, like if their hands were being held over an open fire and the flames were starting to make their skin blister, blacken and burn.

Getting your Momentum – Plus

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Sometimes a little beauty in life can sneak up on you.

Your startup needs a pre-launch signup landing page

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[After last week's post on A prelaunch page for your startup , Josh Ledgard of KickoffLabs reached out to point out his alternative. Here's more info from Josh.]. by Josh Ledgard. Co-founder, KickoffLabs. You need to start marketing your next great idea today.

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The Age of the Platform

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(Phil Simon is a four-time author, speaker, and technology and management expert. I met Phil for the first time when Pat and I recorded Show #104: Phil Simon and the New Small on the Startup Success Podcast. Phil is way smart, insightful and knows how to tell a great story! Recommended Reading!).

6 reasons to use Asana to build your startup.

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So you want to successfully build your startup and that means building systems that get all sorts of work done. If you’re funded, you can hire someone to define all the task, marketing, support, recruiting, planning, agile project management and operation systems you need.

What ZenHub adds to GitHub and why it matters to you

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Developer teams succeed or fail largely depending on what their development process is. A good process raises all boats and sends them happily steaming to success; a bad process or one that’s overly complicated for the project or the size of the team or complexity of the software makes everything harder, slower, and more painful than it should be. Most of the developers reading this post are very familiar with GitHub (My sincere condolences if you’re stuck with BitBucket.).

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Startup Mistake #1: the anonymous startup.

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If you expect people to sign up and perhaps pay for your startup, you have no chance in hell if you don’t explain in credible detail who you are. Here’s an example (as of Wednesday; May 10, 2017) – everydaycheck.com , a habit-building saas going for $12/year.

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Can your markdown do this?

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As I build out KeyboardBrains.com, I know I’m going to be handling a good amount of content, without the safety net of a CMS. I cringed at the notion of storing all that content as static html, but classic markdown or multimarkdown or even Github Flavored Markdown would leave me hamstrung when it came to styling that content with classes and id’s. As I started drilling into this problem domain, I can across kramdown.

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Goodbye CoffeeScript, hello ES6

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While CoffeeScript has been the default since Rails 3, and continues to be the default in Rails 5, the wider developer community is moving to ES6 whether Rails developers like it or not.

JOBS bill passes – New era for startup funding starts now.

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If you’ve founded a startup, or are thinking of founding a startup, your API to OPM (Other People’s Money) just got earthshakingly easier to use. Sitting in President Obama’s inbox this afternoon is HR 3606 – the JOBS act – ready for his signature, SEC rulemaking, and going into production.

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I’d like you to meet your replacement

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I know it’s always hard on employees when they’re told they’re no longer needed. It’s hard on management too! But we’re running a business here and our investors want to see increased profits, decreased costs, and especially labor costs.

It’s time to get going!

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For years I’ve used one or another Pomodoro-style timer to focus my attention on the work at hand. Recently though, my old goto for this Focus Keeper on [just] iOS, was becoming more annoying than helpful. Marching along – and being marched along to the tune of its beat – was feeling oppressive, not empowering. It’s not the fault of the app – it was doing what it was supposed to do and what it had been designed to do.

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Pricing Pages captured in the wild

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If you or your team are at point where you’re ready to bestow on your startup a pricing page, you’re going to want to head over to PricingPages.xyz first. There you’ll find example after example of how other companies have designed their all-important monetization moment.

Quick prototypes and agile startups.

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I don’t usually mix my day job at TheRightMargin with my various passions here at 47hats, but an experiment I and three other employees are getting ready to launch was just too useful for people here to pass up. As self-funded startup founders (SFSFs?) we tend to code first and ask questions later. I’m a programmer dammit, and if I write a cool feature then users will love it! Maybe.

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Requiem for Ruby 5 and 5 minutes of Javascript podcasts

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I noticed this morning that two of my favorite developer podcasts – Ruby5 and 5 minutes of Javascript – had stopped updating in Overcast, my podcast player of choice. I went to the sites and got the scary Google message you see in this post.

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An interesting Amazon innovation

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I just saw something I never expected to see again: a mailman delivering a big heavy box to my doorstep on a Sunday afternoon. Seems Amazon has started using the USPS for big box deliveries seven days a week, at least here in California.

What I’ve learned about creating product videos

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By Iain Dooley , Founder of Working Software and creator of Decal CMS. Over the past year, I’ve done a bit of work producing videos and in this post I discussed the importance video has played thus far in marketing, support and training people how to use Decal CMS.

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Taking Charge of your Startup’s Scheduling

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By Mark L. Smith , Co-Founder. www.DigMyData.com. Momentum is the life blood of a startup. Nothing gums up the works and kills momentum like scheduling difficulties — timezones, multiple availability schedules, holidays. It’s a wonder sometimes that anything gets scheduled at all.

AskBob: Where do I find developer cofounder?

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(Got a startup question? Ask it at AskBob and I’ll take a stab at it. And if it’s a question that other startup founders are asking, look for it as a post here.).

Do you really need an explanatory video for your startup?

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By Marc Strong, Founder, Wienot Films. The world is drowning in information–at least I know I am! In 2011, we created an estimated 1.8 zettabytes of data. What’s a zettabyte anyway!? Mashable says 1,800,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes is enough information to fill 57 billion 32 GB iPads.

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Join fizzle.co now.

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Continuing my experiments to make myself a better solopreneur, I’ve joined and started participating in fizzle.co – and so should you. My first reaction to fizzle was skepticism – what, another online course that will make me all better? Been there, done that.

Startup Idea Stuck? Spend a buck!

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If you’re stuck for an idea to build your startup on, then I’ve got just what you need – and it will cost you a single dollar. Rene Andreasi-Bassi is one of those rare people who throw off great ideas like way sparks fly when molten steel gets poured.

Start every day with a line of code.

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I’m going to try an experiment: identify and implement 1 small habit each Monday that makes me a better solopreneur, and report the results back here. This week: Start the day with a line of Code. Earlier this morning as I was lying in beed, checking news and zite, texting my girlfriend, avoiding another week of building FlashCommand , and I can across this post, “ 12 Ridiculously effective techniques to mastering productivity as a startup founder” Number 1?

Finding a great startup domain name

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There’s thousands of advice posts on picking a domain name; In this post I’ll try to filter down to the few most important ideas, take a quick look at how the interaction between name and market focus work, and share 6 online tools that I found useful in my hunt for Project Y’s URL. The basics.

They’re back!

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The cold zombie hand of those who want to save you from the evils of the Internets are back: CISPA (Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act) will keep you safe from evil cyberterrorists, pornographers and copyright infringers. Just close your eyes, shut up, do as we say and go shopping. Or not.

Using Evernote to manage your Startup

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Whether it’s the latest set of Heroku commands or alternative revenue models for your startup, you need one place to store all the vital bits, ideas, and decisions. I recommend Evernote. While there are lots of alternatives (Wikis, Circus Ponies Notebook, plain text files, etc), Evernote gives you a set of nice features (versioning, formatting, device ubiquity, robust search) that no other single app has.

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Why Accelerators Matter

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The Dev with the biggest Toolbox Wins

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Devs cannot resist tools. On any given workday we are in the blender with a swirling whirlwind of technologies, frameworks, libraries, user stories. The more of them you know, or at least know they exist, the more and better code you can write. So here’s three quick recommendations for finding more useful stuff, primarily for the frontend.

Why did Microsoft BizSpark Decline my Startup?

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The one question founders have asked me in my {volunteer} role successfully sponsoring 350+ startups into Microsoft BizSpark is why Microsoft declined their startup. Sometimes the applicant will wait weeks only to get declined; sometimes it takes mere minutes.

You have data. What you need is DigMyData.

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So there you are, with your startup wired up with every type of analytic instrumentation you could ask for. You got your Google Analytics, Google AdWords, your email engagement program of choice (it really ought to be MailChimp , IMO).

Dark Patterns

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Everyday on the web we as consumers hit one or more dark patterns , usually involving trying to squeeze a little more engagement, or a little more money out of us. Sometimes they can be quite insidious – like having an unsubscribe form with many options, one of which you need to skip to actually unsubscribe – and sometimes as in your face as finding your checkout cart is “helping” you by adding accessories.

The Ultimate Startup Bundle and why it’s worth your time.

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The reality for would-be technical startup founders is you’re going to have to learn and master a ton of information about non-technical stuff: marketing, content marketing, seo marketing, pricing your product, raising money, raising more money (not the same thing), etc. Sure, you can google each and every one of these topics, sort through all the posts that are just filler between ads, and ferret out actionable information. Good luck with that.

Go back to school for your startup. Free!

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Wouldn’t it be awesome if you could take a class in how to build your startup, from a world known authority, at one of the best colleges in the world, for free? That’s exactly what you can get from Steve Blank , at Stanford University, starting in February.

In or Out?

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In the Zone. Of the Zone I mean. You’ve heard about it over and over, but here is the best description I’ve read (Thanks Rands !): Let’s talk about the Zone once more. You’re either sitting down with your computer to futz around with something or you’re attempting to get in the Zone.

Why Startups fail to sell.

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[This is a free sample from my ebook, Startup Sites that Sell! Creating and Marketing your Unique Selling Proposition. You can get the rest of this ebook designed to substantially improve your startup web site for $24.95

Why branding a startup begins with a question, and not the one you’d expect.

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Andrea Shillington. By Andrea Shillington. Founder & Owner . Brands for the people. The first question every leader should start with is this: why does your business exists other than to make money?

Use a checklist to control your email addiction

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So what was your most terrible anti-productive habit in 2012? Mine was checking email. On my desktop, iPad and iPhone, morning, noon, night, between and during and before and after everything else. Killing this habit in 2013 would be the #1 thing I could do to increase productivity.

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