Archive for March, 2010

Ideas vs. Network #Godin

Friday, March 26th, 2010

One of my favorite blog posts here is called Fake Metrics.

Seth Godin recently wrote a post titled Viral growth trumps lots of faux followers. In it he talks about how to grow… let me assume he’s talking about growing a list of evangelists.

In his post he points out a few variables that contribute to REAL, solid, sustainable, valuable growth.

Factor 1: the rate of growth

Factor 2: how good your IDEA is

Read his short post to see how it works – the basic conclusion is that if you want to have a strong group of evangelists, and the growth you get from that, you must have a good idea.

Even a *slightly* better idea can lead to terrific growth results (represented by the purple line).

How good is your idea?  Or are you just working on getting fake metrics?

Effective Video Communication

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

After my video guy did the first edition of the What is JibberJobber intro I asked my Twitter people for feedback.  Karin Hermans responded with links to two resources… THANK YOU KARIN!

Here’s a link to Octane’s video, which she really liked.

Here’s a link to a blog post titled The Key to Effective Communications – Scope vs. Detail.  Great stuff there.

And here’s the second edition of the video we created:

You don’t “write a blog” … #petpeeve

Friday, March 19th, 2010

My heavens, every time I hear this I cringe.

“I wrote a blog…”

No, you didn’t, you newbie!  You wrote a BLOG POST.

You don’t write an envelope, do you?  NO.  You write a letter.

“Hold on, I’m writing an envelope to grandma!”

Get it?

Blog vs. blog post.

If you blog, learn the difference.

(now, someone find me a ladder so I can get off the soapbox :p)

140 Miles. Encouragement.

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Today was an interesting walk. I walked 6.3 miles, which is the most I can stand to do since my boss doesn’t like me to take 2 hour lunch breaks :p

About 3 miles into it a neighbor who knows what my goal is honked like a crazy woman and then pulled up beside me and yelled encouragement… thumbs up and everything.  That was pretty cool (thank you :)).

Then, about a half mile up the road I was at an intersection waiting to cross when an older guy (about 60), pushing a stroller with a baby, came up to me and said “I walked every day for an hour, cut 1/2 of what I ate and cut out the soda and I lost 23 pounds!  Don’t give up!”

That was really nice of him to share.  Of course it reminded me that even though I feel 100 times better, I still look like I need to lose 23 pounds :p

Here’s my favorite story, though.  This happened 8 days ago. I was with my 9 year old son (the romantic one LOL).  He is a very active kid but this winter he hasn’t been so active… so he would ride his bike ahead of me just so he could take a lot of rests.

When we were about 3.5 miles into the walk, which was about .5 miles from our house, I told him I was going to pass our house and walk another 2.3 miles.  I knew he was exhausted and really just wanted to get a reaction out of him.

He said, with a really calm face, “that’s okay.” — no discouragement at all.

I said “really?”

He replied, and this was the BEST part: “sure Dad, I don’t care.  I just want to make sure you hit your goal.”

He was thinking of ME hitting MY goal.  What an awesome 9 year old!

It was a very tender moment – I sure love my kids!

Anti Spam, Viral Growth

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

This is brilliant.

Many sites grow “virally” by tricking you into “inviting” your contacts to join.  The idea is an invitation from you is probably something your contacts can trust… companies count on that trust to get eyeballs and signups from your (inadvertent) actions.

This caught my attention this morning… a user of one of those systems knew what was happening and wrote a brilliant “don’t do it!’ piece – check it out:

anti_spam

Please disregard this invitation because they did it automatically and I don’t know how to undo it… so here’s some word of mouth – DON’T SIGN UP FOR THIS SYSTEM.

I really appreciate that my contact saw this before he blasted it out to his entire network – in my eyes his credibility shot up 10-fold.

Imagine if websites didn’t do this type of thing.

Gmail Brilliance

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

I just wrote an email and hit the send button… check out the popup that I got:

gmail_attached

I admit it is a little eerie that gmail reads my mail, but you must realize this has been happening with all hosted email for over a decade… right?

Anyway, I regularly hit send before putting the attachment in…. it looks like that might not be an issue anymore?!?

Brilliant user design Gmail!

Want to be an entrepreneur?

Monday, March 8th, 2010

Have an inclintation to be an entrepreneur?

Read this post by Tim Ferriss, called Why Grow? and other wisdom from 37Signals.  Here are some of my favorite parts:

>> 37Signals is focused on getting sh*t done instead of chasing the Silicon Valley venture capital death spiral. Financing has it’s place, but it’s a means to an end and shouldn’t be confused with an end.

I’ve played around in the funding space for almost four years, thinking about getting funded, talking to people who have gotten funding, asking advice, talking to investors, etc.  I have recently been going to any Funding Universe Crowdpitch I can, which is really enjoyable, but I’m still leery of looking for outside investors, so I really appreciated that line :)

>> More than 3,000,000 people worldwide use 37Signals products

WOW.  3M.  That is amazing.

>> Have you ever noticed that while small businesses wish they were bigger, big businesses dream about being more agile and flexible?

Talking about the perfect size of a company… everyone is looking for that greener grass. Huge used to be the goal, but look at all the huge companies and all the problems they have?

>> The easiest, most straightforward way to create a great product or service is to make something you want to use.

I love that entire section… examples of companies that started because founders had their own itch to scratch, came up with a solution, and have done very well.

Very nice, inspiring post. I’ll have to check out the book.

Does Your Tummy Feel Yucky?

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

Last night Kim threw up on my bed after too much playing and laughing.

About an hour later, as I was putting her to bed, I asked her:

Does your tummy feel yucky?

She replied, with a grin:

No, my tummy feels yummy!

:)

Getting Product Testimonials

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

I have a buddy who is looking at developing a very cool new business offering and wanted to see if JibberJobber, as a CRM,  was good enough to be a part of the offering.  After spending hours on the system this is what he wrote to me:

Even though I have played with JibberJobber for quite a while, I never really dug deep into how I could use it to grow my biz. I just used it as a place to store contacts – but now that I have a focus of how I should be using it, I have to say that you have done an incredible job with it.  I just played with the quick add from Twitter function which is way cool.

What a super compliment.

And a great testimonial.

This just came from him after he’s spent hours on MY product.  He’s known me for years, he’s known about JibberJober for years, and he’s even had an account for a while.

But he was playing around with it, not serious, not understanding how it could meet his needs (not really understanding his “needs,” until recently).

It made me wonder: how many of the people we know, who know us, really know what we do and what we offer, and have an appreciation for our services?

I bet it’s less than 5% or 10%.

How to get that number higher?  Well, maybe it is in your communication. Maybe it is just a matter of time, and waiting until the sun (your product), the moon (their needs), and the stars (their understanding of your offering) align.

When it does align take the sweet opportunity to ask, like I did: can I use that as a testimonial?

Yes, they’ll say, and they are happy to help you because you’ve made them happy by providing them a terrific solution.

I love these types of testimonials.