Article15 Helpful Podcasts for Entrepreneurs

15 Helpful Podcasts for Entrepreneurs

Starting a company is downright difficult and anyone that has done it before will tell you that is an understatement. What they also might mention is in our day and age, Founders don't have to jump off the proverbial cliff head first without a parachute anymore.

The world of podcasting has opened a door into the minds and experiences of many thought leaders and seasoned Founders that offer a "tell-all" experience into their startup-building journey. It's like getting first-hand mentorship without paying a dime, and with the number of entrepreneur podcasts increasing in recent years, there's no shortage of information to take advantage of.

For startup founders embarking on the entrepreneurial journey for the first time, or even for the serial ...

ArticleCustomer Segmentation: A Step by Step Guide for Growth

Customer Segmentation: A Step by Step Guide for Growth

A company in the early growth stages should concentrate its efforts on a particular segment of customers whose needs most closely match that of their best current customers and not a broad universe of prospects for expansion.

Customer segmentation works for companies that started yesterday, and mature companies as well. In the modern digital marketing landscape, it's not optional for success in most marketing channels.

What is customer segmentation?

The term consumer segmentation or market segmentation means segmentation of the consumers into subgroups. This allows you to tailor your message to your clients' needs. Several kinds of statistics inform customer segmentation.

The idea behind dividing a business by customer types is an effective met...

ArticleThe Financials Slide — Pitch Deck Perfection

The Financials Slide — Pitch Deck Perfection

Why does it Matter?

The financials slide in our pitch deck takes our own financial projections and consolidates them into our most key metrics that potential investors care about.

Most pitch deck financial projections wind up being incredibly hard for potential investors to understand, so we're going to provide you with a killer financial projections slide template that's easy to use and will impress investors.

Key Metrics Potential Investors Want

We always build our financial projections slides in our pitch deck backward from what questions investors have.

That way, the financials slide is only covering exactly what a potential investor wants to see — and no more!

"What are the pro forma financial projections?"

Our "pro formas" are really just a ...

ArticleOperating Model

Operating Model

What is an operating model?

If the Revenue Model is all about the clever ways you’re going to make money, the Operating Model is all about the clever ways you’re going to manage costs and efficiencies to earn it.

Operating Models Shouldn't Be Afterthoughts

Often the Operating Model gets the least amount of love. That’s because we’re so worked up about solving a problem and creating a path to revenue that the idea of isolating critical cost factors and driving operational efficiencies seems so far away.

Operating Model Canvas

While not a necessary step, using an operating model canvas provides a visual representation of operating models that can be useful in both operating model design as well as presenting it to other members of the leadership t...

ArticleRevenue Model

Revenue Model

What is a revenue model?

Your Revenue Model is simple — how are you going to make money? More importantly, how are you going to be profitable someday? Don’t let the Silicon Valley myth of “valuable companies don’t need a revenue model” become part of your pitch. All companies need a real revenue model that can be reasonably explained and agreed upon by everyone. Well, not by everyone. By Investors. Let’s be real. Revenue streams aren't a "nice to have" — unless the company makes money, it's going to be a short-lived hobby.

You don’t want to be this Founder:

Founder: "We're going to sell dollar bills for 99 cents! It's going to be huge!"

Investor "How will you ever make money?"

Founder: "Volume!"

Investor: (laughs and exits the room)

Many business...

ArticleWhere There's Smoke, There's Fire

Where There's Smoke, There's Fire

A long time ago I was talking to the owner of a huge automotive dealership chain about how he manages so many dealerships at once. I assumed there was some sort of interesting management scheme he was applying, but what he told me shocked me.

"I drive to every dealership throughout the week, walk around, and look for little things. Cars that aren't fully detailed, salespeople in back taking a smoke break when they should be on the floor, or a lower amount of foot traffic in the showroom."

He went on to say "Where there's smoke, there's fire. Every little detail that's missed means someone isn't on the job, and that's how I find out where I'm needed." In a world of OKRs, KPIs, and endless operational meetings, this guy ran a billion-dollar c...

ArticleStartup Market Size

Startup Market Size

Welcome to part 2 of “The Pitch” — where we look at market size, how to go about estimating market size, and presenting potential market size.

Before we get started — it's worth noting that “The Pitch” is broken down into 8 articles including this one. 

We’ll also cover:

  • Part 1 - Anatomy of a Pitch

  • Part 2 - Market Size ( ←YOU ARE HERE 😀)

  • Part 3 - Revenue Model

  • Part 4 - Operating Model

  • Part 5 - Customer Definition

  • Part 6 - Customer Acquisition and Traction

  • Part 7 - Funding

  • Part 8 - Key Pitch Assets

Market Sizing

Solving the Problem beautifully is nice and all, but if the Market Size of the Problem isn't big enough, you're not likely to get investors very excited.

The Market Size explains just how much p...

ArticleWhat's a Startup Pitch?

What's a Startup Pitch?

Part 1: Anatomy of a Startup Pitch

Welcome to our third phase of the fundraising process — The Pitch. 

We’re going to break this down over 8 articles starting with this one, “Part 1 — The Anatomy of a Pitch.” Any startup interested in raising money will need a pitch presentation to share with potential investors, and successful startups all have one thing in common (most likely) a solid business idea backed by a convincing presentation deck.

In this article, we will talk about the 10 sections of a pitch and what they include.

Moving forward, we’ll also cover:

  • Part 2 - Market Size

  • Part 3 - Revenue Model

  • Part 4 - Operating Model

  • Part 5 - Customer Definition

  • Part 6 - Customer Acquisition and Traction

  • P...

Article13 Best Books on Entrepreneurship

13 Best Books on Entrepreneurship

Leadership is a popular topic these days. To become a true leader, you need a combination of skills and attributes. Some of these are inborn, to be sure. However, you can develop your leadership abilities as well.

Entrepreneurial success stories often tip a hat to the literature that supports busy business owners through the thick of the business building experience so, of course, we wanted to share books with actionable advice that aspiring entrepreneurs will find helpful on their journey to building a successful business.

Business books that have already helped millions of entrepreneurs can guide you along the way to obtaining a sustainable business, and being the best leader you can be. After all, being a great leader takes effort — a...

ArticleThe Funding Slide — Pitch Deck Perfection

The Funding Slide — Pitch Deck Perfection

The Funding Slide in our investor pitch deck summarizes our investment opportunity, including our use of funds, investment amount, and what we want to accomplish in our next stage. Potential investors, from angel investors, to venture capitalists, will zero in on this part of the slide deck to determine their initial investment.

Typically this is the final slide of an investor pitch deck, where we transition from pitching investors to making the big ask.

What do Potential Investors want to know?

Our investor deck should cover three critical factors when we get our "ask slide":

"How much capital? What Round of capital?"

Many investors, from venture capitalists to angel investors, align their investments based on the amount of capital a startup co...

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