Day: February 24, 2021

3 Recommendations For Post-Pandemic SaaS Sellers



The welcome news of COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out around the world gives us hope that much of life will return to normal in the coming months and years. It also sent a signal to SaaS companies that their reign at the top of the stock market may come to an end once that happens. 

Regardless of their stock market status, SaaS technologies like video conferencing have fundamentally changed the way we conduct business during this pandemic. SaaS vendors themselves were forced to swiftly change their sales strategies amid lockdowns by implementing remote interactions with prospects and thinking digital-first. 

As an end to this nightmare comes into sight, some of the profound changes this pandemic has caused to business could remain well into the future. According to McKinsey, a survey found that more than 90 percent of B2B decision-makers expect the remote and digital model to stick around for the long run, and three out of four believe the new model is as effective or more so than before COVID-19.

With this in mind, here are three recommendations for SaaS sellers moving into a post-coronavirus future. 

 

1. Optimize e-commerce 

The SARS outbreak in 2003 is said to have kickstarted the dominance of Chinese B2C e-commerce companies like Alibaba. Similarly, could coronavirus lockdowns be the catalyst for a sales revolution in B2B e-commerce? Indicators point to that outcome. 

Another McKinsey survey found that just 20 percent of buyers wish to return to in-person sales after the pandemic subsides. (Read more...)

History of the Silver State: Nevada and its Silver Districts



The following content is sponsored by Blackrock Gold.

Nevada Silver Districts
Nevada Silver Districts

History of the Silver State: Nevada and its Silver Districts

Nevada and its silver districts built the western territory into a modern American state.

Today, the world best knows Nevada for its modern gold production—however, a new generation is rediscovering Nevada’s famous silver districts and their potential.

This infographic comes to us from Blackrock Gold and outlines the history of Nevada and its legendary silver districts.

A Timeline of Nevada’s Famous Silver Districts

The Paiute, Shoshone, Quoeech, Washoe, and Walapai tribes populated the territory that is now the American state of Nevada before the Europeans arrived in the 18th century.

Nevada became part of the Spanish Empire as part of the greater province of New Spain, and then later Mexico after independence. As a result of the Mexican–American War and the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico permanently lost Alta California in 1848.

The United States continued to administer the area as a territory. As part of the Mexican Cession in 1848 and then the California Gold Rush, the state’s area was first part of the Utah Territory, then the Nevada Territory in 1861.

However, the great Comstock mining boom of 1859 in Virginia City consolidated the area as part of the United States. Silver discoveries and mining spurred development and statehood, all by uncovering the famous silver districts of Nevada.

An eccentric Canadian from Trenton, Ontario, Henry Comstock gave his last name to a discovery that launched mining in Nevada. In (Read more...)

The Equity podcast is growing



Equity is celebrating its fourth birthday in a few weeks and closed 2020 with its biggest quarter to date. To celebrate and say thank you to our wonderful listeners who tune into us each and every single week, we’re growing upward and outward!

First, as many of you have noticed, we’ve expanded the Equity team. Grace Mendenhall joined the production crew this year, initially helping cover for Chris Gates while he was out on paternity leave. But now Chris is back and so we’ve doubled our producer team.

In classic startup fashion, a bigger team means we can make more swings at R&D, or in this case, add on a new show to our semiweekly cadence.

Today, the whole Equity team — Chris, Grace, Danny, Natasha and Alex — are super proud to announce that we’re expanding the podcast’s show lineup. We’re going to add a new show each week, which will rotate around a particular theme, geography or supermassive news event. It’s your midweek chance to listen to a show about one trend, whether that’s space tech or the growth of community as a competitive advantage. Sometimes it will be an exact topic you’ve cared about for so long (insert Alex and SaaS joke here) and sometimes it will be about a topic you know nothing about. We’re here to convince you to care anyway. Regardless, you can depend on the Equity trio to give you a trifecta of shows that helps you stay up to date on startup (Read more...)

How Global Health and Wealth Has Changed Over Two Centuries


This post is by Nick Routley from Visual Capitalist


How Global Health and Wealth Has Changed Over 221 Years

At the dawn of the 19th century, global life expectancy was only 28.5 years.

Outbreaks, war, and famine would still kill millions of people at regular intervals. These issues are still stubbornly present in 21st century society, but broadly speaking, the situation around the world has vastly improved. Today, most of humanity lives in countries where the life expectancy is above the typical retirement age of 65.

At the same time, while inequality remains a hot button topic within countries, income disparity between countries is slowing beginning to narrow.

This animated visualization, created by James Eagle, tracks the evolution of health and wealth factors in countries around the world. For further exploration, Gapminder also has a fantastic interactive chart that showcases the same dataset.

The Journey to the Upper-Right Quadrant

In general terms, history has seen health practices improve and countries become increasingly wealthy–trends that are reflected in this visualization. In fact, most countries drift towards the upper-right quadrant over the 221 years covered in the dataset.

However, that path to the top-right, which indicates high levels of both life expectancy and GDP per capita, is rarely a linear journey. Here are some of the noteworthy events and milestones to watch out for while viewing the animation.

1880s: Breaking the 50-Year Barrier
In the late 19th century, Nordic countries such as Sweden and Norway already found themselves past the 50-year life expectancy mark. This was a significant milestone considering (Read more...)

When Everyone’s a Genius (A Few Thoughts on Speculation)



The end of a speculative boom can be inevitable but not predictable. Unsustainable things can last a long time. Identifying something that can’t go on forever doesn’t mean that thing can’t keep going for years. Years and years and years.

Part of it is emotion. During the Vietnam War Ho Chi Minh said, “You will kill ten of us, and we will kill one of you, but it is you who will tire first.” Emotional trends aren’t beholden to logic, which can keep them going far past any point of reason.

Part is storytelling. Unsustainable trends have life support if enough people think they’re true, and once people believe something’s true it gets hard to convince them it’s not. Or put differently: If enough people believe it’s true it’s just as powerful as actually being true.

Every investor is making bets on the future. It’s only called speculation when you disagree with someone else’s bet.

In hindsight there was as much speculation in the 1990s that Kodak and Sears would keep their market share as there was that eToys and Pets.com would gain market share. Both were bets on the future. Both were wrong. It happens.

Of course there’s a speculation spectrum. But let’s not pretend that others speculate while you only deal with certainties.

The willingness to believe crazy things increase when it feels like the world is dangerous and falling apart. Chronicling the Great Plague of London, Daniel Defoe wrote in 1722:

The people were more addicted (Read more...)

Canva acquires background removal specialists Kaleido



Kaleido, makers of a drag-and-drop background removal service for images and video, have been acquired by up and coming digital design platform Canva. While the price and terms are not disclosed, it is speculated that this young company may have fetched nearly nine figures.

It’s the right product at the right time, seemingly. In 2019, the Vienna-based Kaleido made remove.bg, a quick, simple, free, and good-enough background removal tool for images. It became a hit among the many people who need to quickly do that kind of work but don’t want to fiddle around in Photoshop.

Then late last year they took the wraps off Unscreen, which did the same thing for video — a similar task conceptually, but far more demanding to actually engineer and deploy. The simplicity and effectiveness of the tool practically begged to be acquired and integrated into a larger framework by the likes of Adobe, but Canva seems to have beaten the others to the punch.

Animated image showing a stack of books on a table in a room, but the table and room get deleted.

Image Credits: Unscreen

The acquisition was announced at the same time as another by Canva: product mockup generator Smartmockups, suggesting a major product expansion by the growing design company.

We completely bootstrapped Kaleido with no investors involved from day one,” said co-founder and CEO of Kaleido, Benjamin Groessing, in a press release. “It has just been two founders and an incredible team. We’ve been profitable from the start — so this acquisition wasn’t essential for our existence. It just made sense on so many levels.”

(Read more...)

How to Find the Right Online Communities


This post is by David from David Teten's blog


The user experience in the big, ungated social networks is getting steadily worse: spam, bots, fake news. One result: I think we’ll see people spending more and more time in gated online communities. Particularly in a time of social distancing, when people can’t meet one another in person.

But…how do you find the right online communities that are worth your while? Filled with conversations worth having and people whom you’d like to meet?

First, I suggest search within the major online community platforms for your industries and functions of interest, in particular: 

Second, I suggest using some of the search engines for finding online communities:

Third, look on an internet search engine for all combinations of words from each of the two columns on the right below, e.g., “New York software engineers group” . 

CategoryYour keywordsSynonyms for community
Location (or leave blank)“New York”“alliance”, “association”, “community”, “conference”, “council”, “forum”, “institute”, “network”, “organization”, “retreat”, “society”, “symposium”
Target industry“fashion”, “health care”
Target function“Software engineers”

 

Scott Allen, CEO, TheVirtualHandshake.com, and my coauthor, said, “There are actually a lot of great industry/peer groups on Facebook. Just also a lot of noise, and discovery can be harder. But they’re typically far more active, more closely moderated, and supportive than LinkedIn groups. Austin has some great examples:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/austindigitaljobs/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/austinstartups

https://www.facebook.com/groups/freelanceatx

Facebook is (Read more...)

Boulder Chamber Memberships for Black-Owned Businesses


This post is by Brad Feld from Feld Thoughts


Amy and I just underwrote one-year memberships to the Boulder Chamber of Commerce for 62 Black-owned businesses in Boulder.

Last summer, Aaron Clark started putting together a list of Black-owned Businesses in Boulder. The current list is at 62.

A few weeks ago, John Tayer at the Boulder Chamber mentioned an initiative he was working on with Aaron to get discounted memberships to all 62 companies. The Boulder Chamber is a long-standing and important part of the Boulder business community, and John has been a great leader for many years.

In an attempt to eliminate any friction associated with a decision for these 62 businesses to join the Boulder Chamber, Amy and I decided to underwrite their memberships for a year. I hope that all 62 will join, and the overall Boulder business community will engage deeply with and support these business owners.

I appreciate Aaron and John’s leadership enormously. I’ve gotten to know and work with Aaron on several initiatives over the past nine months, including participating in an equity learning initiative led by his firm Equity Solutions, supporting Justice Reskill, and experiencing a lot of equity activity Aaron has lead for Energize Colorado.

John recently did one of his Chamber Chats with Aaron. It’s a great overview of some of the work Aaron is doing, along with a discussion of Black History Month.

If you’d like an intro to Aaron or John, just email me.

The post Boulder Chamber Memberships for Black-Owned Businesses (Read more...)