May 22, 2007
Resources for Entrepreneurs
Tonight is the TechStars reception where a bunch of local entrepreneurs are going to meet a bunch of (for the most part) brand new entrepreneurs. You can read more at TechStars.org or David Cohen's description of the organization at Coloradostartups.com.
When Jim and I started Gold Systems, I think we knew approximately Zero entrepreneurs. I had email and access to Usenet, but there was no web, so information about starting a company came from the library or a kind soul willing to share their hard-earned lessons. My big break came when I landed on a prospect list for the Young Entrepreneurs Organization. Brad Feld and Vern Harnish had just moved to Boulder and they wanted to start a Colorado Chapter and lucky for me I opened the door when opportunity knocked.
Vern and Brad both spend a lot of time helping entrepreneurs, but it is mind-boggling how much information is available to this new batch of entrepreneurs just from their web browser. A reader recently sent me a link to an article he wrote on raising angel money at businessfund.com. Good stuff, and he has a lot to say about VoIP (Voice over IP) which I found interesting on his other blog, VoIPLowDown.com.
Now the problem is sorting through all the information and figuring out what is good and what isn't so good. Another local company, Lijit, has come up with a solution. I've replaced my generic search box on my blog, with a Wijit from Lijit. It looks like a typical search box, except that it doesn't just search the entire web, it starts with only the blogs that I subscribe to myself. If you type in "Raising Angel Money" into my Lijit Wijit like so:
You'll first get the results from terrygold.com where I've mentioned "Raising Angel Money" but at the bottom of the page, you'll also have the option of searching other sources that I would recommend (since I read them myself). In this case it returns four other places to look so you don't have to wade through all the "get rich quick" ads that a typical search engine might return. Unfortunately it misses some great sources that don't have RSS feeds, such as the Kauffman Foundation, BillPayne.com and JimCollins.com. (Hey Todd, how about it?) I hope these new entrepreneurs appreciate just how nice it is to have all this information at their fingertips!
UPDATE 1: Todd Vernon, the CEO of Lijit, just left the comment below less than an hour after I mentioned his company. I have to ask - do YOU know what people are saying about your company as well as Todd seems to know? There are great tools that are available today for new entrepreneurs. Someone should package them up into a "CEO Dashboard" - but don't sell them to MY competitors please!
Todd says, "Thanks for the nice writeup. We gotcha covered on the alternate URL's to search. First, as you know if they are listed on your site (like a blog roll) we will find those all by ourselves and include them.
But in case they are not on there just goto the "My Network" tab within lijit. The bottom item on the list is "Add URL / RSS / OPML feed". Add the url to the site and you got it!"
Thanks Todd! I'll add a few right now.
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Thanks for the nice writeup. We gotcha covered on the alternate URL's to search. First, as you know if they are listed on your site (like a blog roll) we will find those all by ourselves and include them.
But in case they are not on there just goto the "My Network" tab within lijit. The bottom item on the list is "Add URL / RSS / OPML feed". Add the url to the site and you got it!
Posted by: Todd Vernon | May 22, 2007 12:53:09 PM