Posts tagged ‘market problem’

Web appsThe art of Persuasion for fundraising entrepreneurs (or what you can learn from Aristotle and Steve Jobs)

June 22nd, 2011 by Greg Boutin
Detail of The School of Athens by Raffaello Sa...

Image via Wikipedia

As a budding entrepreneur, you might have the best concept in the world, but if you can’t communicate it effectively and persuade others to believe in you and in your project, you will fail regardless. On the other hand, mastering Persuasion could make you the next Steve Jobs (who hasn’t heard of his “reality distortion” field?)

That is especially true in the context of fundraising. Unless you have a history of building successful startups (and even then), potential investors, clients and collaborators will judge you based in large part on the credibility and rigor of your business case. (more…)


Market product specifications and thought leadership strategy for semantic platform startup

February 7th, 2010 by Greg Boutin

Like other applications, ambitious multipurpose web platforms must start by solving a specific market problem, and find their ways into the heart of a passionate community of early adopters.

Those are the challenges I took on at the request of an intriguing multi-million stealth startup’s founders. (more…)

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Semantic appsWill We Soon See a Rally on Web 3.0 Start-Ups? My Take on Semantic Tech

July 7th, 2009 by Greg Boutin

About 3 weeks ago, I left a warm Canadian sun to fly south to San Jose’s chilly weather, and attend the Semantic Technology conference. Or, let’s be fair, 1.5 days out of the five the event lasted. The rest, mostly, I followed through Twitter, which by all accounts tends to be a little like watching the Olympics on TV, as opposed to being in the stadium: you don’t get the pop corn and hot dog breeze, but in the end you know more about the games than people who were there (and not on Twitter too… it gets quickly confusing.)

Of course, the big objective at “Sem Tech” is networking. Thanks to the nice folks of Semantic Universe (thank you Eric and Steve), I managed to make it, last minute, onto the exclusive list of VC Connect, a cocktail reception which gathered both fundraising CEOs and investors (of whom more attended than I thought there would be. I guess the free hors d’oeuvres did the trick). I stroke most great conversations there (apologies to those I met outside of VC Connect!)

So, my impressions of the event. I know those are late but I’m not competing with news organizations, just with analysts, so that’s ok!

Overall, it was sort of “hot and cold”: there were lots of very positive signs and, by all admissions, there is still a lot to do before Web 3.0 and the Semantic Web truly happen.

Key mental notes I made to myself: (more…)


Twine’s Success Debated. What’s the Right PR Approach for Semantic Web Ventures?

February 10th, 2009 by Greg Boutin

The debate has become a little aggressive and I feel a bit ashamed of broadcasting those aggressive parts with the rest of it, but I can’t really atomize it and I think it’s important for the health of the semweb ecosystem that the core question be addressed: what is the right PR approach for semantic start-ups, and beyond that, tech ventures?

Image representing Twine as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

I am referring to Twine, which, again, is in the spotlight after a VentureBeat article by Chris Morrison, who probably didn’t see that one coming… The debate erupted after the publication of the article, arguing that the coverage was not the whole story. I was one of those commenters, as I questioned the choice of dates of the traffic graph, and wondered why questions of user engagement were once again left out. As a previous “power user” (but not the one using the pseudo “previous power user” in venturebeat comments! My only pseudo is “gregboutin”!), I have been vocal about this for the simple reason that I think Twine could quite easily deliver a better experience, and in particular a better noise-to-signal ratio. My view is that improved focus on a core benefit is the key to beating Twitter and Facebook in adoption. Yes, only that. Isn’t it positive? Unfortunately, Twine has failed me, and obviously many others, on this dimension so far. So much that I pretty much stopped using it. (more…)

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