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If you’re so afraid of spilling the beans that no one knows you have any …

By Leo Valiquette

During my years as a full-time journo, I crossed paths with many a startup technology venture that claimed to be operating in so-called stealth mode. It was the early 2000s, before the process of getting technology to market was as socially enabled as it is now, and startup CEOs seemed to consider it hip and trendy to apply the S word to their businesses.

Where, I wonder, are many of those startups now?

We wrote many moons ago about the inherent foolishness of trying to build a business by somehow staying under the radar. You can’t define a market need, develop a product to meet that need, secure the funding necessary for operations or build the team that can pull it all off without telling the world who you are and what you are trying to do.

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Great articles roundup: Content marketing, entrepreneurship, startups, PR, the pivot

By Daylin Mantyka

As a regular feature, we provide our readers with a roundup of some of the best articles we have read in the past week. On the podium this week are Techvibes, Financial Post, Ventureburn, Velocity and Fast Company.

Why even startups should practice content marketing

Greg Marlin outlines some compelling reasons why startups should engage in content marketing. The benefits of deploying a smart, well thought out plan include message and market testing, awareness and traffic generation, and shortening the sales cycle, for example. Read on to get a more in depth look at the pros of creating engaging, consistent content.

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Best of: Just the facts … no, these facts

This is the next entry in our “Best of” series, in which we venture deep into the vault to replay blog opinion and insight that has withstood the test of time. Today’s post hails from July 2008. We welcome your feedback.

By Leo Valiquette

In my years as a journalist I endured my fair share of embarrassing gaffes, both my own and those of my staff (which I was often on the hook to explain, apologize for and redress.)

Despite the emphasis on clean, factual and reliable content, the occasional mistake is made in the newspaper business. Nobody’s perfect and the strain of rushing to meet a deadline can easily lead one to skip out on taking the time to check the facts through a second time.

Of course, it’s difficult to feel all that sympathetic about the plight of harried reporters when it’s your good name that’s attached to the error. Maybe they called your CEO Rob when his name is Rod. Or said your flagship product is still in trials when it has been commercially available for six months. There are the little things that don’t matter so much, such as whether your company was founded in 1989 or 1990, or the big whammies that can land you in a lawsuit — like that defamatory off-the-cuff remark that was never intended to be on the record.

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Is that writer worth the cost of the ink?

 

By Leo Valiquette

When I worked in the newspaper business, there was a screening practice for job applicants that I wholeheartedly embraced – giving the strongest prospects freelance assignments on tight deadlines.

There is no better way to gauge someone’s abilities. Writing samples are all well and good, but there is no telling how much they have been cleaned up by a third party. The same approach was taken at our affiliated inmedia Public Relations practice, only in this context the assignment was a media release.

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February roundup: What does it take to get technology to market?

By Leo Valiquette

It may have been a short month, by we still pulled together in February a rich lineup of content for marketers, entrepreneurs and investors alike. Hot topics included how not to do customer service, what’s to love and hate about technology marketing, the root causes of the so-called Series A crunch and the risks of “mentor whiplash.”

In case you missed any of it, here is a handy recap of our posts, as ranked by the enthusiasm of our readers:

Feb. 5: Is the ‘last mile’ of sales automation keeping your reps from closing more business?, by Jeff Campbell

Feb. 7: The trouble with mentors is…, by Francis Moran

Feb. 21: 6 little things that tell your customers you don’t care, by Linda Moran and Francis Moran

Feb. 25: Ego capital and the ‘Series A Crunch’, by Ronald Weissman

Feb. 13: Getting to the point in drafting a patent application, by David French

Feb. 20: The traditional corporate presentation is dead!, by Anil Dilawri

Feb. 27: You just never know where a story is going to stick, by Leo Valiquette

Feb. 6: Does your business suffer from multiple personalities?, by Leo Valiquette

Feb. 11: Do you have the key ingredients for an effective board?, by Denzil Doyle

Feb. 26: App development today demands a three-in-one approach, by Peter Hanschke

Feb. 14: Why I heart tech marketing, by Francis Moran

Feb. 28: Why I hate tech marketing, by Francis Moran

Feb. 19: Do your PR people suffer from telephobia?, by Leo Valiquette

Image: February2013CalendarPrintable.com

Recent Comments

  • Francis Moran : I'm so glad to see you warming to this idea, Luc. Not that you were ever one of those mindless critics who automatically opposed the proposal; you were properly skeptical and demanding that it contain more of what folks like you and I believed was necessary for success. Looks like the city is listening.

  • Luc Lalande : Hi Francis, thank you for the steady and keen eye on the development of this important project for the City. I share your view that open spaces in the building’s design will be critical components for encouraging spontaneous interactions between people. Integrating such spaces in the Innovation Complex sends the right signals to the community-at-large and not just the local startup ecosystem: everyone is welcomed! With respect to Patti’s comments about the arts sector, it would be worth bringing back to light that the Hintonburg-Mechanicsville area has emerged as the first Arts District in the City of Ottawa, housing many artist studios, performing arts studios, and media groups. While the 7 Bayview located Innovation Complex may cater to the entrepreneurial set, there is still considerable property on these lands that could, one day, be developed and capitalize on the area’s sizable artistic community. But perhaps the open spaces at the Innovation Complex can be equally accommodating for anyone who embraces creativity and entrepreneurship: artists and innovators alike.

  • How can we foster culture of entrepreneurship? | Waterloo Innovation Summit : [...] Velocity also provides hands-on workshops for anyone at the University to learn about becoming a successful entrepreneur, and awards over $300,000 per year through the Velocity Fund to promising early startups, to help launch their success financially. We keep finding really good problems that are worthy of solving and that we think we’d be good at solving. - Mike Kirkup, Director of Velocity and Student Innovation Waterloo’s Velocity accelerator is 5, and growing fast [...]

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