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35grove.com | Where Ideas Grow - Part 2

Need to Hire? Don’t. Wait Until 2009.


[Photo by m o d e]

Is your company growing? Are you in the enviable position of needing to actually bulk up your team? Then the one piece of advice I can give to you is: Don’t. Not yet at least.

Why not? Well, it’s not because of the recession. There’s a better reason. [Read more]

Google’s SEO Guide

If your teacher were to have given you a test ahead of time, and tell you to read it so that you could figure out all of the answers for when you had to actually take it, would you read the test? I seriously hope so. (If your answer is, “no,” then stop trying to build a company; you’ve lost already.) Well - now you have an opportunity to apply this theory to the real world. [Read more]

Asking for Voicemail is Good


[Photo by subactive_photo]

No matter what type of company you’re running, there’s always a sales element. And when you’re starting up, it’s probably a majority of what you’re doing. Many people will say that a key to sales is actually being able to speak with someone. So in today’s age of virtual offices and instant communication, phone calls reign supreme, and emails are only a second best. The problem is that in the hunt for the elusive phone conversation, you can find yourself calling the same person day-in and day-out, only to reach their assistant who informs you that they’re not available. And then they pop the question: “Would you like me to place you into voicemail?” Should you bite? Or is that admitting defeat because we all know that once you leave a message, the ball is in their court, and they might not call you back not even because they’re not interested, but because you’re just not a priority at the moment. So you might not want to leave a voicemail and just call back tomorrow. Is this the right move? [Read more]

Step 1: Survey Your Audience


[Photo by gaetan lee]

What’s the biggest mistake you can make when starting a company? Easy: Not speaking to your potential audience to find out what they really want. In fact, this is one of the most common places where people steer their businesses in the wrong direction, and it’s before they’ve even created their product!

I started to touch on this concept when I talked about K.I.S.S.ing your startup, but I think that it’s so important that I want to expand on the concept and provide some best practices for starting off on the right foot. [Read more]

I’m Long CPA Ads and LinkShare

It’s undeniable: The economy is kicking the bucket and Internet celebrities are heralding an online nuclear winter. With that in mind, if we think back to Econ 101, the first thing companies tend to cut is unnecessary spending: consultants, advertising, et. al. However, companies can’t completely shut off advertising. Instead, I think that companies will begin to stay away from un-measurable advertising options (e.g., display brand-building ads) and gravitate towards highly-measurable ones (e.g., cost-per-action transaction focused ads).

I don’t believe for a minute that companies won’t pay for a guaranteed sale (or at the very least, pay for an ad that they can link to some sort of performance). And that’s exactly what CPA advertising is. In another name, it’s affiliate/referral advertising. In this case, companies only pay publishers when the ad on the publishers site is the direct result of a sale.

So if you’re pulling together a business plan and must base it on advertising, I’d take a long hard look at CPA, and stray away from CPM. Then again, I’d try to focus your business away from ads all-together, but if you must…

Vote. Get Free Stuff.


[Photo by cs.belgium]

The classic image of the entrepreneur is a twenty-something college grad (or drop-out), working out of their parents’ garage, living on a budget-conscious diet of ramen noodles. But today, Nov. 4th, is a day that you can dispel that image. Instead of living on-the-cheap (read: ramen), you can live on Epicurean luxuries like “Starbucks,” “Krispy Kremes,” “Ben & Jerry’s,” and more, all for FREE. How? [Read more]

Twitter = Awesome + My Newest Venture

I’ve taken the past few weeks to poke around Twitter and while at first I thought it was just going to be a huge waste of time, I’ve come to love it. It enables me to have conversations with people I wouldn’t otherwise have access to, through other people’s update feeds I’m receiving great links and stories, and more. Yet most importantly, it motivated my most recent mini-venture. It’s all based around M.C. (bet you want to find out what that stands for don’t you?). I can’t give too much away yet, but check back for a very exciting announcement!

K.I.S.S. Your Startup


[Photo by positiv]

The number one rule of starting a company: KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID (K.I.S.S.).

The number two rule of starting a company: K.I.S.S.

You get the point…

The reason I found it so necessary to not only capitalize my favorite business phrase, but also to repeat it, is because of the number of times people have approached me with startup ideas (or even tried to start companies; myself included) that were so much more complicated then they had to be. This only resulted in frustration and even failure. However, if you just K.I.S.S., you can make sure that everything falls into place. Here’s why. [Read more]

Don’t Name Your Company After Yourself

Jim Kukral of The Daily Flip and Sachin Agarwal of Dawdle.com gave me a very important tip when I first decided to start 35grove.com: don’t name it after your own name. (Of course this doesn’t only have to apply to website, it can also apply to any businesses, consulting firms, etc.)

Why shouldn’t you name your company after yourself? [Read more]

What Financial Crisis? Start an Internet Company Now! Nothing’s Changed.


[Photo by carvalho]

I genuinely believe that now is a fantastic time to start a company.

With the lack of liquidity crippling the short-term borrowing that drives the everyday operations of small businesses, people are not only panicking, but would-be entrepreneurs are shying away from taking the plunge. I personally think that’s plain stupid. There’s no better time than now to take the plunge (or better yet, invest in a startup) and start raking it in (and more importantly, begin having fun). But what criteria do you need to check off before doing so? Here’s the list. [Read more]

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