HOTB Software Solutions
HOTB is a highly experienced software development company that provides in-kind angel capital to startup entrepreneurs with a viable technology based business. HOTB helps startups bridge the gap between their friends and family round and their venture capital round by subsidizing expensive technology needs. HOTB specializes in building custom software platforms to provide certainty of execution, experience, credibility, security and compliance. Additionally, HOTB Ventures has been formed for instances of passive investment when software development is not needed.

Manatt
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP is known for quality, for extraordinary commitment to clients, for integrated, relationship-based services, and for a range of capabilities typically found only in boutique firms. We are progressive and entrepreneurial compared to other major firms, and we are deeply committed to diversity, to public service, to involvement in the communities we serve and to excellence in all we do.

TriNet
Tech companies partner with TriNet Passport to compete for top talent by using our bundled HR products that cover the core services of payroll, fortune 100 benefits, risk and compliance, a scalable HR team all on a cloud platform. TriNet reduces the time businesses spend managing HR and administrative issues while providing enterprise-grade cloud capabilities. This enables entrepreneurs and management to focus on what’s important from raising funds to driving revenue. Join hundreds of executives in high tech who have experienced the TriNet Passport difference, working for companies in hardware, software, SaaS and telecommunications. Contact choy.chew@trinet.com for more information.

Eureka
The Eureka Building is a 3-acre technology campus in Irvine, California designed to help accelerate innovation. Founded in 2014 by Peter Polydor, our goal is to support local entrepreneurship by giving innovative companies and entrepreneurs in Orange County a home that is centrally located and easy to access. Through partnerships we are more than just a home, but are a support network hosting startup events while fostering mentorship relationships with our partners all within one of the most creative spaces in the region.

CrashLabs
CRASHLABS IS A VIBRANT COWORKING AND EVENTS COMMUNITY THAT ENHANCES WORK/LIFE BALANCE FOR THE NEW ECONOMY OF UNTETHERED WORKERS. CRASHLABS OFFERS CREATIVE AND FLEXIBLE SPACES SUCH AS OPEN DESKS, DEDICATED DESKS, PRIVATE OFFICES, AND EVENTS SPACE THAT SERVE EVERYONE FROM THE INDIVIDUAL TO CORPORATIONS.

Real Office Centers
At ROC you’ll find a cohesive and progressive working environment with professional support for entrepreneurs, innovators, and today’s leaders. Beyond merely providing the physical workspace, we contribute to your capital growth by facilitating innovation, inspiration, and collaboration. With professional support services, educational events, and a stimulating environment, ROC is where you and your company will grow. Our open-source work environment and friendly staff complete with private receptionists keep business running smoothly. ROC handles day-to-day operations and facility management so your company can focus on what it does best.

Key Leg in the Startup Equation: Marketing, by Joseph Jaffe

Posted by Jonathan Greechan on 2013-03-29

Founder Feedback gives you insight from the startup trenches.

In this post from his blog, Joseph Jaffe, founder of Evol8tion and New York Founder Institute mentor, explains why branding is an important component of a startups marketing campaign. He says, brands often suffer from somewhat of an ‘identity crisis’ and suffer from a lack of direction or specific goal.

Below, "Key Leg In Start-Up Equation: Marketing" has been republished.

"The start-up world is build on a two-legged platform of technology and finance. If you don’t believe me, just watch Bravo’s "Start-ups: Silicon Valley," which does its best to tell a story about VCs raising capital and bootstrapping a new venture, together with the freaky and geeky world of engineers, programmers and developers.

Only that story is incomplete. There’s actually a third leg, which you don’t get to hear about. Perhaps you’ll catch a fleeting glimpse of a throwaway “marketing” or “sales” reference, but for the most part, it’s conspicuously absent in this show, industry and market in general.

I would argue — and I am a Madison Avenue guy who eats, sleeps and breathes brands — that the marketing leg is the most important part of the entire equation. Yet, it’s the one that is the most undervalued, underinvested, underutilized and misunderstood.

Most start-ups have the same visions (or sometimes delusions) of grandeur: We’ll get big fast because everyone will just go crazy sharing us with their friends, fans and followers on Facebook, Twitter and whatever else is popular at the time. Then we’ll monetize by selling ads — or just sell to Facebook, Twitter or whatever else is popular at the time.

That statement is fraught with holes and gaping voids, and it begins with the disconnect between today’s empowered consumer and their absolute disgust for interruptive advertising, banal messaging and irrelevant spam.

Contrary to popular belief, brands aren’t lining up waiting to advertise on the 1000th photo app to call themselves the “Instagram of….” Or “Instagram meets….” Hell, they’re barely doing anything on Instagr.am itself.

Brands are trapped within their own identity crisis, trying to figure out whether their start-up infatuation is a one-night stand or something more profound; whether it’s a quantity (scale) or quality (engagement) play; whether their metrics of success are ROI-based (return on investment) or ROI-based (return on innovation).

Then there’s the scope and scale of a “test”, “experiment” or pilot program. Brands are typically noncommittal when it comes to investing anything beyond chump change into a start-up desperate to get some proof of concept and validation. On the flipside, there are way too many start-ups that see an abundance of $-signs when a brand and/or their agency pays them a visit.

The Wild West is back, and the biggest problem is a lack of rules (of engagement), process and set of best practices, upon which to build a solid and enduring bridge of collaboration and mutual benefit.

I believe the meeting of the minds happens in the win-win wheelhouse of marketing. Ultimately, this is where both sides see eye-to-eye. Digital or technology based start-ups are founded on the basis and belief of being able to solve a problem (sit or squat), correct a market inefficiency (uber) and/or change the game (square). Brands couldn’t agree more, especially when it comes to delivering against a consumer insight, human truth and customer benefit.

No one wants a three-legged stool with a wobbly, weakened and/or uneven leg. Isn’t it time we shored up the marketing component of this succinct and compelling equation in order to ensure that start-up monetization, acceleration and evolution is balanced and counterbalanced with brand innovation, differentiation and transformation?

That’s rhetorical. The answer is yes."

For more startup insights from Joseph Jaffe, check out his blog Jaffe Juice and follow him on Twitter @jaffejuice.

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Key Leg in the Startup Equation: Marketing, by Joseph Jaffe

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