Over the past three years, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about the best ways to market early-stage startups. Below is a synthesis of this thinking, packaged nicely into ten points. My insights reflect a wide range of responsibilities that fall under the marketing function, and cover both the…
“When you take venture money, you’ve got to assume you’re signing up to work with someone for a period of years. The relationship better work because more likely than not, you’re going to go through some rough times together. One quick test I think about is to ask the question, “if I see this person’s caller ID on my phone, am I excited to pick it up or do I let it ring twice, take a deep breath and then answer the phone?””—The Caller ID Test (via brycedotvc)
About three years ago, I was approached by Romy Maxwell at Startup School in 2009. He asked my advice about the tool they were building to help people do radius searches for Craigslist apartments, remove duplicate listings, and let you know when pictures are duplicated to avoid scams. I urged him to contact Craig Newmark directly and share. I figured the reasonable response from Craig would have been to hire Romy and his partner or buy their technology. It’s literally what every reasonable company in the world does when innovative young people come along and make something your users want.
What happened next tells you all you need to know. Romy corresponded politely, explained how they were going about building their software, even decided to keep it non-revenue generating. They sent a link to Craig so he could check out their work and even while acting super friendly, he encouraged them, and then without communication or warning, blocked them.
There are moments in life when you say to yourself - this moment in time or this place in life or this great group of people that I know, it’s just perfect. These moments unfortunately don’t last forever but if you can get as many miles out of them as possible then that’s all you can hope for.
Tomorrow our friendship circle becomes a little smaller as we say goodbye to Albert a.k.a. “Smoovebert.” He’s leaving us for an indefinite amount of time to do big things on the West Coast. Seeing your friends get whisked away by amazing opportunities I believe is the very definition of bittersweet but we are happy and proud of Smooves.
When I first met Albert I thought to myself, geez this guy is really cool I hope he thinks I’m cool too. Now I think to myself, geez this guy is still really cool and I like how I feel cooler when I’m around him. He’s so cool in fact there are posters of him BMX’ing in the subway.
(Albert doing some smoove moves).
Albert has been a LONG TIME supporter of Phin & Phebes and I mean, a long time supporter. He was there when we were doing experiments in our kitchen, he was at the Hester Street Fair every weekend two summers ago, he was at Smorgasburg last weekend and he continues to probably be our number one customers(followed by his girlfriend Alicia).
So thank you Albert for always being there for us and for being a great friend. OH and thanks for dating Alicia and adding her to our little group. We’ll take good care of her while you’re gone!