Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Plusconf brings together the best

You have crazy people. You have sober people and you have people with with families. They all belong to a tribe which creates and runs startups.

Some common themes

  1. Most startups begin in consulting/services mode wherein you gather cash to burn for your idea.
  2. You pick an idea that solves a specific problem for a specific customer. Its not a ego drive. You want somebody else to pay for your product/service.
  3. Most startups begin at home either at second bedroom ( if you have) otherwise shared.

The event was http://plusconf.com/ being stictched together by Benjamin ( Could not get contact details) on livestream.com.

Allan Branch - Lessaccounting.com
Missed of the part due to poor audio quality, dont know at whose end

  1. Do coworking more for exchanging ideas.
  2. Working from home is difficult but you need to learn to balance.
  3. Tell hello to every customer that signs up.

Todd Garland - BuySellAds

  1. Do not leave your fulltime job until cash can sustain you for a while. You can work on your idea in free time and let your employer know about it. Do not start a competeting business. The conflict of interest may do more harm than gain.
  2. Do stuff yourself. Do as much as you can possibly take till the time your business gives enough revenues so that you can hire your first employee. When you give your first employee the salary its half of your income and it all goes into your company.
  3. Better give cash rather than promise of stake. A stake is a promise in future. 
  4. Be careful with equity. Do not distribute it freely but at the same time dont be too obsessed with it.
  5. Obsessively find out why the customer went to competition. Not to pull him back but to genuinely know and improve yourself.
  6. In the early days of your startups you could be your worst enemy. You need to be honest with yourself about the worth of your idea. You need to come across genuine to your customers.
  7. Feel happy when clones come up. Beat them. Allow competition to push your envelope. Do not do clone yourself.

Noah Kagan - Appsumo

  1. Reach out and tell the world what they need rather than pushing your self interest. We went to lifehacker.com with three sentences in email telling them that they will have exclusive to a cool product. To some you can send gifts to gain their attention. The world is selfish and you need to fulfill the needs of others. 
  2. Your developer may ditch you royal time. Be prepared for eventualities.
  3. Have focus. The one thing that I learn from Zack from Facebook is to have focus and no distraction.
  4. Focus on customers, see what you are offering them and how you are offering them.


Hiten Shah - KissMetrics

  1. Create a hypothesis for developing your products. Prove it while developing it.
  2. Define metrics for different stages of products and religiously follow them.
  3. We have divided our 10 people startup into a problem team and solution team. The former is closer to market and customer and defines the work, the latter is mostly technical who solve the problems.
  4. Lean and virtual startups are call of day. We too have meetings on M-W-F. Monday to define the problems of the week. Wednesday to catch up on how its going. Friday for lessons learnt and peek into next week.


David Cancel - Perfomable

  1. Seek funds only when its in dream stage or when you have gained enough traction for products. VCs will push you for demos and traction and you will loose focus.
  2. Reach out. But do not attend conferences randomly. They are waste of time.
  3. Listen to your customers. Not to your competitors. Talk to them early and talk to them often. 
The presentation were direct and honest, eye to eye. Nothing to hide but arms wide open. We are here to help if you need any kind.

These links came up during discussion
http://three.sentenc.es/
http://www.thinkgeek.com/index.shtml
http://twitter.com/#!/nikolasivkov
http://www.rewardlevel.com/
http://okdork.com/
http://survey.io
http://www.custdev.com/ you can use the coupon LEAN for discounts
http://www.cindyalvarez.com/
There were others so please add if you remember them.


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