Monthly Archives: October 2013

Diving into Mobile

Happy Halloween DMSers.

I wanted to share a few quick notes regarding upcoming course elements.

It’s All About Mobile

Tomorrow’s blog topic is about mobile and its business impact on the industry you’ve selected for your new product. Additionally, one element of your business plan requires you to outline a mobile-first strategy as part of your marketing and PR plan.

I thought this article in Forbes, 7 Ways Mobile Will Change Business in 2014, would be of interest.

Monday’s Activities

We have a jam packed Monday session, which will include:

Verbal Presentations

  • Entrepreneur interviews: these are informal and should focus on your interview subject and key points that you learned from this source. Also, how has this information influenced your product development.
  • Product pitches: In less than 5 minutes you’ll need to cover your problem, solution, market, primary feature and revenue generation. Some type of visual element is also required.

Business Plan Review

  • Your draft business plan is due. Bring it in print format.
  • We’ll break into small teams for focused review and critique.

Have a safe Halloween and a highly productive weekend working on your DMS products.

Is This Shopping Nirvana?

Good morning DMSers.

A few random items to share this morning…

Monday’s Verbal Pitch Session
Everyone did a nice job with the 60-second Problem-Solution exercise. I mentioned you need to be prepared to do a new pitch each week in class for the rest of the semester.

The verbal challenge you need to prep for next class session is…
You’ll have 60 seconds to focus on ONE feature of your product and how that feature improves the lives of your market.

One feature only. It should be the most important feature your product offers from your market’s perspective.

Instant Gratification via ShopThis
We’ve been discussing advertising — the good, the bad and the “let’s drive all our customers away” varieties. Check out this New York Times piece about ShopThis, which provides a way for consumers to instantly purchase products they see highlighted in stories or in advertisements.

Also note the partnerships behind this new endeavor. Many of you need to start thinking about how you’re going to integrate partnerships into your business plan materials. What’s in it for your partners vs. what’s in it for you and your startup business?

GeekWire’s Todd Bishop Visits Monday

Good morning DMSers.

Our guest speaker Monday, October 14 is Todd Bishop. He’s a member of our News Hall of Fame and one of the founders of GeekWire.

Todd is going to discuss:

  • His career path from writing for The Orion to founding a startup company.
  • How he made the decision to create GeekWire and the process by which the company came to life.
  • The pros and cons of being an entrepreneur.

He’s also going to be taking questions — start contemplating all those questions you have about business models and generating revenue, growing a startup company’s market, leveraging your skills on the job-hunt trail, etc.

Following Todd’s visit we’ll also discuss our midterm and the marketing section of your business plan assignment.

Crafting Your Pitch

Greetings DMSers.

I have a few resources I want to share regarding tomorrow’s topic, The Pitch. There are lots of ways to develop a business pitch that you’ll deliver to potential startup investors. Two pros in the field share their approaches here:

Dave McClure discusses How to Pitch a VC

During his presentation, McClure references an entrepreneur by the name of Tim Young who uses only 5 slides to pitch investors. Given that Young received more than $10 million in funding in one year, he’s probably worth listening to. Definitely review his Rules for Slides.

On the Advertising Front

Since we’ve been discussing and blogging about advertising, I wanted to share these stories I’ve found recently:

Today’s New York Times has a great feature regarding a startup company that has learned how to track your online life via all the electronic devices you use (even with cookies disabled) and then sells your info to advertisers. Check that out here.

BusinessWeek has a good article about StumbleUpon’s work in mobile advertising.


Mashable has a piece about how watching ads on mobile devices might earn you more data on your cell phone plans.