Everyone has heard about the big potential for using artificial intelligence (AI) to expand your business, but many of the small businesses I mentor are still wary of embracing it, because they don’t understand how it works, and fear losing control and unintended consequences. My advice is that AI is here, so it behooves all […]
With all the progress in analytical tools and big data available, many people feel there is no place in business today for intuition and gut instincts. As an advisor to entrepreneurs for many years, I strongly disagree and still see the value of at least combining intuition with logical analysis, as we face customers and […]
Practical advice for aspiring entrepreneurs, including easy ways to identify sure-bet opportunities, most not requiring any invention, before you finalize your innovative business idea.
Ten universal truths about selling, and the customer decision process, which every business needs to address in their product, business model, and their whole customer experience. Just think of your whole business as the sales engine, rather than just the sales reps.
Feld and Mendelson identify the five most common negotiating styles that you will see on both sides of the table, and talk about how you can best work with each of them.
A voice from the top that is inconsistent with what is heard from the firing line defines a dysfunctional and noncompetitive company for today’s customer. Thus team makeup is the critical success factor.
If you want people to invest in your idea, then my best advice is to first write a business plan, and keep it simple. Don’t confuse your business plan with a doctoral thesis or the back of a napkin. Keep the wording and formatting straightforward, and keep the plan short. For minimum content, see my […]
Brands are people first. Customers are people too, so customers tend to take their relationship with a brand personally. Thus it’s not a surprise that people love their favorite smartphone brand, cringe when you mention their cable company or even hate the mention of a particular bank. Startups, as well as every existing business, need […]
When I started mentoring entrepreneurs and startups a few years ago, I anticipated that I would get mostly tough technical questions, but instead, I more often hear things like “Where do I start?” I find that the basics are actually the hardest to answer, just like your parents found out when they first tried to […]
If you are just plain tired of working so hard, or your startup is not getting the traction you expected, should you shut down cleanly, or just file for bankruptcy and walk away?
Is your marketing focus product-centric or customer-centric? If you only sell products, it’s time to realize that times have changed. With a wealth of products now available, customers look for the most memorable experience, not just the best product. These days, a fun shopping experience, or no-question returns, often tips the scales over extra product features or […]