Good morning, All,
We got to a lot of pitch events – where investors are always present – as well as accelerator demo days – where there are even more investors present. Of course we always query them for their feedback post-event. Most often we hear: ‘yes, interesting, but we’ve seen this before.’ Or, ‘they’re in a crowded space.’ Newsflash: libraries and bookstores – on and offline – are filled with books, and yet when you get down to it, there are only seven plots in all of literature, and actually, they can be boiled down to three: man v man; man v nature and man v himself. So any fiction writers on the list? Give it up: it’s been done and why the New York Times should even bother with a bestseller list is beyond us. To make matters worse, Mark Zuckerberg Says There Are Only ‘6 People In The World With Good Ideas’ (http://read.bi/QmXzDU) – himself included, of course, and let’s not forget that FB was far from being the world’s first social network. (Oh, and in case you missed it, and speaking of social networks, they’re back: https://new.myspace.com/play.) Remember: only seven plotlines.
Given all of this, what’s an entrepreneur to do? Answer: what you’ve always done. Keep building. Never give up on building the better mousetrap. Of course, Einstein’s definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result, but that’s not what we’re talking about. As Erin Griffin notes in her pandodaily piece about ER Accelerator Demo Day which took place last week, “If Facebook has taught us anything it’s that an idea doesn’t have to be original or first to succeed. It just has to be executed the best.” (Politics, Planes and Paperwork: http://bit.ly/Q2cPpD). A fine point, that may well elude many an investor. (She also notes that conversely, the best execution doesn’t always win, either. Remember betamax?). Investors like founders with great backgrounds or track records. Look, they dumped millions into Color (Color.com Raises $41 Million For Building Location Photo- and Video-Sharing Social Network: http://bit.ly/SNchkr) yet a handful of unknowns founded instagram – an industry hit which left the Color investors waaay in the red. Pun intended. You’ve never heard of Sulia – but you someday may: This Tiny New York Startup Is Showing Facebook How It’s Done. http://read.bi/USQ87O. It’s the world’s first subject-based social network. They organize short-form content into channels. It’s free, and built in a way so that they can someday monetize their content. No brainer for advertisers: here’s your dedicated audience. You don’t have to go looking for them. They’re right here in this channel. May be time to take a cue from companies like Sulia and don’t just make your focus to build lean, or do more faster. Build smart and build it your way. As Oscar Wilde said, be yourself… everyone else is already taken. End of story. Onward and forward.