Showing posts from September, 2012

5 Lessons I’ve Learned from Starting My Own Business (Part 1 of 2)

A Walk on the Wild Side In 2007, I designed a rummy-based card game called What’s Wild?! . I produced several thousand copies of the games and created a company to sell it. I did everything on my own— from testing different versions of the game, filing trademarks, outsourcing its production, generating PR, building a web presence, shooting a commercial, and selling to distributors, stores, and direct to customers. It was the biggest learning experience of my professional career — more so than any other job and any level of education I’ve had. The past five years have had plenty of ups and downs and I thought I’d share some of the lessons I’ve learned along the way. My next post will be on things I now do really well because of this experience. Focus on what you do best. I’m a marketer, through and through. I’m not a lawyer or an accountant. When I decided to produce and sell What’s Wild?! all by myself, I significantly underestimated the time I would spend on things other than

Even a Coffee Filter Can Benefit from Good Marketing

Unfiltered You might think that all coffee filters are the same. And, in fact, a quick look on a shelf in a supermarket or a search on Google will not reveal much differentiation between coffee filter brands. You might think there's no way to create a brand for a coffee filter for which people would pay a slightly higher price than an unbranded filter. If you think that, you would be wrong. I recently saw this list of 24 things you can do with a coffee filter besides make coffee. I learned a lot — coffee filters are great for cleaning windows because they are lint-free. Who knew? And I'll bet there are hundreds more uses for a coffee filter that I don't even know about. A New Way of Thinking About Coffee Filters   What if one brand of coffee filter crafted its brand around the idea that there are limitless ways to use a coffee filter and encouraged its customers to share new ways to use their filters? Put great content like that into the hands of a gifted markete