April 15th, 2011

Leave the adjectives & superlatives to me

If you tell me your startup (or your client’s startup) is “revolutionary,” “groundbreaking,” or the greatest XYZ there ever was, I’ll roll my eyes. Don’t make me roll my eyes.

Maybe those adjectives and superlatives do apply (probably not), but why would I take your word for it? And, why bother using words that have lost all meaning, or worse, statements that just aren’t true?

Instead, just tell me or show me what your product does. All that other stuff is fluff that makes me 99% likelier (it’s a proven fact) to archive or ignore your pitch.

Find more pitching tips here: http://prsarahevans.com/2011/04/how-to-get-your-startup-noticed-in-the-media/

March 2nd, 2011

Nice dress @rwwmike

March 1st, 2011
A glass slipper approach to pitching

A glass slipper approach to pitching

February 28th, 2011
Apparently this CVAC (altitude conditioning) pod will help you stay fit. Color me skeptical!

Apparently this CVAC (altitude conditioning) pod will help you stay fit. Color me skeptical!

ecoATM. Machine dispenses cash for recycled electronics.

ecoATM. Machine dispenses cash for recycled electronics.

February 11th, 2011

Soft Spot

I have a soft spot for a good startup story that tugs at the heartstrings.

By that, I mean stories that don’t get told in the everyday churn-and-burn tech press news cycle. That’s not to say fundraising, product releases and user milestones aren’t significant or interesting, it’s just that they don’t inspire the writer in me the same way a real story about two founders torn between keeping their day jobs and pursuing a passion project full-time does.

Of course, the Flickchart story I’m referencing has solid numbers to backup up why the startup is worthy of coverage. 

One thing I failed to mention in the piece is that founders Nathan and Jeremy are big on having a direct relationship with everybody on the site. Everything about these guys just feels unadulterated, unsullied by an industry focused on high valuations, potential IPOs and companies reaching as many millions of people as possible.

I’m inspired by smaller, more humble startup success stories.

If you’ve got one, you know where to find me (jenn at mashable dot com).

February 9th, 2011
Lunch with Blekko CEO Rich Skrenta & founder Mike Markson at Paragon.
Towards the end, Markson said something I found to be rather poignant. “This is the world we live in. Newsweek sells for a dollar and Demand Media IPOs.”
Think about that for a minute.

Lunch with Blekko CEO Rich Skrenta & founder Mike Markson at Paragon.

Towards the end, Markson said something I found to be rather poignant. “This is the world we live in. Newsweek sells for a dollar and Demand Media IPOs.”

Think about that for a minute.

February 2nd, 2011

Can you build a machine that listens to words?

Before MIT professor Deb Roy co-founded Bluefin Labs, he was working on machine learning technology to answer that very question.

Part of the process, he told me, was in modeling how children learn language under natural social dynamics. And so he applied his machine learning background to dissecting the social and physical factors influencing the way children, and his son in particular, learn language.

Thanks in part to those efforts, startup Bluefin Labs “understands” social media updates and associates them with television content and advertisements. 

January 27th, 2011
Okta and Andreessen Horowitz hosted a press dinner at Prospect Tuesday. This was my amazing vegan dessert. I’ve never experienced anything quite like it — the dessert or the nature of the dinner.
One thing that struck me was that Ben Horowitz said Okta is his first board. A point he made to emphasize the significance of Okta’s enterprise cloud app management service.
Another fun fact: Horowitz likes to take credit for naming “the cloud” at Loudcloud.
All around quite a tasty evening.

Okta and Andreessen Horowitz hosted a press dinner at Prospect Tuesday. This was my amazing vegan dessert. I’ve never experienced anything quite like it — the dessert or the nature of the dinner.

One thing that struck me was that Ben Horowitz said Okta is his first board. A point he made to emphasize the significance of Okta’s enterprise cloud app management service.

Another fun fact: Horowitz likes to take credit for naming “the cloud” at Loudcloud.

All around quite a tasty evening.

It just hits the funny bone of a social service.

- Kevin Systrom, co-founder Instagram

Context: When Kevin and I first spoke a few months back I asked him why he thought the app was getting so much traction. This was his response.

Here’s another tidbit from that convo that I never published: Prior to launch the guys were planning to monetize by releasing paid filters, but that idea was quickly scrapped for more community-centric ideas. Today’s hashtag news seems to be of that vein.

http://mashable.com/2011/01/27/instagram-hashtags/