Start ups

Lean Business Tips: Marketing Channels on the Cheap

Mike | July 13th, 2015

Startups and small businesses face a steep learning curve when it comes to online marketing. The options are rich, the ROI can be cruel, the capacity investment can be significant, and the results can often be questionable. At crowdSPRING we have experimented with virtually every online marketing strategy and tactic available, often with negative results. The […]

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A Victory for Artists Everywhere – Thank You Taylor Swift!

Mike | June 29th, 2015

Thank You Taylor Swift! Wow. Words I never once imagined being typed by my own fingers. But, credit where credit is due, Miss Swift went up against Goliath, carefully aimed and swung her sling and, Pow! The monster was vanquished! If you don’t know what I am talking about here, a little background: about a […]

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Small Business and Startups: Teams and Transparency

Mike | June 22nd, 2015

How transparent is too transparent? At crowdSPRING we have worked hard since we first launched to share information openly and honestly with our users, our investors, and our team. We communicate regularly with customers about site issues, new features, and our policies and procedures. We ask for feedback and suggestions and, when users choose to share […]

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Small Business and Startups: Things to do Before I Die (Entrepreneur’s version)

Mike | June 15th, 2015

I write often about setting goals and defining strategy, but I rarely think about those things in a personal context. What should my own goals be for the next 10 years and beyond? What strategies can I use to accomplish those goals? As startup founders go, I am a pretty old guy. When we started […]

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5 Things Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Kindergarten Teachers

Mike | May 18th, 2015

If you remember the name of your kindergarten teacher, raise your hand. In a poll of adults, almost 70%  could recall the person with great clarity.  This is remarkable, because not only was this decades ago but the respondents were just 5 or 6 years old at the time! Our very first teachers were memorable because they were sources of […]

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Small Business and Startups: 8 Steps To a Successful Redesign

Mike | May 11th, 2015

There comes a time when a business looks hard at its website and lets out a groan of dismay. Your website is out-dated, out-moded, and out-competed and it doesn’t take a genius to see. Your own customers may have been telling you to get it together and, whether you are listening or not, it doesn’t […]

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Small business Congress-watch: Some Pending Bills (and Why They Matter)

Mike | May 4th, 2015

On occasion I write about legislation pending in our houses of Congress that has the potential to positively impact your business and mine. It is fascinating to read in the news about some of the ideas and priorities that our elected representatives are pursuing as we speak. Some of these efforts gain a great deal […]

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Small Business and Startup Tips: Analyzing Your Search Data

Mike | April 27th, 2015

SEO is simple. NOT! Virtually every business relies to a certain extent on where they will appear in an online search for their service, product, or company name. Online businesses, in particular spend massive resources to ensure that they rank highly on Google, Bing, etc. for any relevant search and most spend a significant percentage of […]

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5 Things Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Artists

Mike | April 20th, 2015

Art inspires in ways sometimes difficult to articulate. Ideas, metaphors, and themes are the product that artists traffic in, and their ability to  galvanize their audiences in a powerful, indirect way can stir us in profound ways. Yet, while we celebrate, even lionize the greatest of our artists we simultaneously relegate the vast majority to poverty […]

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Lean Marketing: Basic Metrics You Should be Watching. Now.

Mike | April 6th, 2015

Marketing is an analytical process. Setting goals comes first. Developing strategy is second. Third is the execution of the specific tactics to support the strategy.  And fourth? Well fourth is measurement and data analysis. Simple right? Most small businesses and startups follow some version of this rational approach to operating and marketing a business. But when it comes to […]

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