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Try This For Lean Startup!
      Mark Fletcher
     Startup 2 Startup
       Feb 25, 2010
Me, Myself and Me Again
             Launched: January 1998
             Acquired: Yahoo, June, 2000




             Laun...
The Idea

  Your idea isn’t new. Get over
 your stunning brilliance; at least
 50 other people have thought of
           ...
The Idea
    A startup will require your
 complete attention and devotion.
  Thought your first love in High
 School was cl...
The Idea
 Focus on what bugs you:

  •   ONElist - Mailing lists were hard

  •   Bloglines - Reading blogs was hard

  • ...
Business Model

 The size of your startup is not a
 reflection of your manhood (or
 womanhood as the case may be).
Business Model
•   ONElist - Get big fast, then do ads, IPO

•   Bloglines - Run cheap, get users, then ads, flip

•   Snap...
Funding

    The best way to get outside
     funding is to be successful
 already. But you, cheapskate, don’t
         ne...
Funding
•   ONElist - $55k initially, then $46M over 2+ rounds, big burn rate,
    hell bent on an IPO.

•   Bloglines - $...
Building The Product


     You will have at least one
 catastrophe every three months.
Building The Product
•   Tech

•   Hiring

•   Getting The Word Out

•   Market Will Define You
Tech

     If you don’t have scaling
 problems, you’re not growing or
      launching fast enough.
Tech
•   ONElist - Oracle, owned the machines

•   Bloglines - Sleepycat, owned the machines

•   Snap Groups - Mongodb, g...
Hiring
•   ONElist - 150 people, hired as many as possible as quickly as
    possible.

•   Bloglines - One full-time, oth...
Getting The Word Out
•   ONElist - Seriously considered spending millions on TV ads,
    stumbled upon extreme viralness o...
Market Will Define You


  You are nothing until you ship.
Market Will Define You
•   ONElist - Surprised about viralness, never anticipated how it
    would be used. Users pushed us...
This Is Important

   It’s a startup, not Alaskan crab
  fishing. Being an entrepreneur is
         about minimizing risk.
Finally

 You have to be wrong in the head
  to start a company. But we have
              all the fun.
Mark Fletcher's Startup 2 Startup Talk on Feb 25, 2010
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Mark Fletcher's Startup 2 Startup Talk on Feb 25, 2010

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Mark Fletcher's presentation for Startup 2 Startup on lean startups, presented on Feb 25, 2010.

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Mark Fletcher's Startup 2 Startup Talk on Feb 25, 2010

  1. 1. Try This For Lean Startup! Mark Fletcher Startup 2 Startup Feb 25, 2010
  2. 2. Me, Myself and Me Again Launched: January 1998 Acquired: Yahoo, June, 2000 Launched: June 2003 Acquired: Ask Jeeves, February, 2005 Launched: Just Now!
  3. 3. The Idea Your idea isn’t new. Get over your stunning brilliance; at least 50 other people have thought of it.
  4. 4. The Idea A startup will require your complete attention and devotion. Thought your first love in High School was clingy? You can’t take out a restraining order on your startup.
  5. 5. The Idea Focus on what bugs you: • ONElist - Mailing lists were hard • Bloglines - Reading blogs was hard • Snap Groups - Groups haven’t evolved
  6. 6. Business Model The size of your startup is not a reflection of your manhood (or womanhood as the case may be).
  7. 7. Business Model • ONElist - Get big fast, then do ads, IPO • Bloglines - Run cheap, get users, then ads, flip • Snap Groups - Run cheap, get users, freemium, no exit in mind
  8. 8. Funding The best way to get outside funding is to be successful already. But you, cheapskate, don’t need money, right?
  9. 9. Funding • ONElist - $55k initially, then $46M over 2+ rounds, big burn rate, hell bent on an IPO. • Bloglines - $200k start to finish, built to flip. • Snap Groups - $6k, built to last.
  10. 10. Building The Product You will have at least one catastrophe every three months.
  11. 11. Building The Product • Tech • Hiring • Getting The Word Out • Market Will Define You
  12. 12. Tech If you don’t have scaling problems, you’re not growing or launching fast enough.
  13. 13. Tech • ONElist - Oracle, owned the machines • Bloglines - Sleepycat, owned the machines • Snap Groups - Mongodb, github, Google Apps, rent the machines (Softlayer)
  14. 14. Hiring • ONElist - 150 people, hired as many as possible as quickly as possible. • Bloglines - One full-time, others stock, Elance. • Snap Groups - Me, 99Designs, psd2html, Odesk.
  15. 15. Getting The Word Out • ONElist - Seriously considered spending millions on TV ads, stumbled upon extreme viralness of groups • Bloglines - PR, relationships with the press • Snap Groups - Rely on previously experienced viralness of groups, Twitter, Facebook, individual blogs
  16. 16. Market Will Define You You are nothing until you ship.
  17. 17. Market Will Define You • ONElist - Surprised about viralness, never anticipated how it would be used. Users pushed us to create a moderator group. • Bloglines - Focus group of power users • Snap Groups - Small power user group, larger moderator group
  18. 18. This Is Important It’s a startup, not Alaskan crab fishing. Being an entrepreneur is about minimizing risk.
  19. 19. Finally You have to be wrong in the head to start a company. But we have all the fun.

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