AllTOPStartups

changing the world one idea at a time

Saas Startup Ideas

saas

Software as a service is being talked about everyday by trend experts, Industry Bloggers, and trend predictors.I have been Thinking about how best to to take advantage of this wave.But it is not that easy to build a startup to serve the businesses.I have been thinking about ideas that can fly and subsequently emerge into a company that can scale like salesforce. Salesforce is the leader of the software as a service market. The 7 Secrets to SaaS Startup Success by Salesforce is great.I am attracted to this market, but I need a lot of insight to run a company like that. Ben Yoskovitz has great insight in the saas market. What Do SaaS Companies Have to Prepare for 2009? has a lot of advice. .
For all the trends and companies taken saas to the next level visit. .

A couple of ideas I have stumbled upon whilst surfing the web:

• Professional Virtual Office Easily manage your data (emails, contacts, meetings, documents, tasks,…) in your virtual office from any computer with a Web browser and an Internet connection. Share yourdata and access shared data efficiently in the context of work or leisure groups. Your data are safe andavailable anytime on the Web, on a PDA (online or offline) or on a WAP capable cell phone.

• Simplify your Online Life . develop tools that improve Internet user’s digital lifestyles. Tools make it easier to communicate online, whether that means one web-based inbox for email and social networks or some other method the community has yet to dream up.

• Contact Management Easily create, manage, and search an unlimited number of contacts, export to vcards, even share contacts with any email address. On the run? Seamlessly download and view your contacts on your phone, laptop, or iPod. Gone are the days of business cards piling up and sticky notes on your desk, Keepm makes everyone you know searchable, shareable, and always accessible.keepm.com (good concept)

• Segment: “Platform as a Service”. Product: a web-based development & hosting platform allowing small businesses to model , build and manage autonomously their own information system, for a small monthly fee.

• Web hosted Virus scanner for enterprises instead of relying on downloadable software. Enterprise subscribes to scan their computers automatically.

• As search engine that crawls and searches for reports on Africa and developing countries. Information aggregated are bundled as reports and sold to companies that needs market analysis and other info for business decisions.

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Filed under: Ideas, Mobile, Saas, Startups, Technology, , , , , ,

Twitter and Facebook Are Not Alone,How Different Is TipDrop

Micro blogging

The new micro blogging term is “What do you know about that?”.Can this statement overtake “Whats on your mind” from facebook and “what are you doing” from twitter .Th micro blogging space has grown tremendously since the twitter went mainstream. But twitter is still figuring out how to make the most of the application.Revenue generation has not been so good. Yammer has built the same concept for enterprises

TipDrop is a place where people come to give and receive tips on just about anything. When you see a tip sheet you know something about, simply answer the question posed.So, how does it work? People post tips that relate to specific topics found in tip sheets. For instance, a user might create a tip sheet with the title, “How to save money in a down economy” and another user might add a tip that advises, “Pack your lunch instead of eating out when at work.” In fact, in its first five days the site has had 1,000,000 page views and more than 3,000 tips.

Filed under: Blogs, Ideas, Startups, Technology, Web 2.0, , , ,

Google Storms Africa With SMS Search, But….

google sms search

Internet penetration Africa is not as rife as it is in the US, Europe or Asia.Few people have phones in their homes.It may be a walking distance, but access to internet does not come handy.Internet access in Africa is still very low compared to the rest of the world.The latest internet usage in Africa as published by Internet World Stats is 54,171,500 compared to the 1,542,098,608 the rest of the world share.Google the leading provider of search on the Internet has brought the search service to Africans on their phones through SMS. Google has partnered with some mobile telecommunication networks to provide search capabilities for Africans on their phones.Individual keywords are sent via SMS to the network by short codes.The result is also sent back by SMS. Africans don’t need to be on the internet to access the service.Africa has the world’s highest mobile growth rate and mobile phone penetration is far higher than Internet penetration. By focusing on SMS-based service, Google will be able to reach a far larger number of potential users than by working on web-based apps.

The service in Ghana where I come from is not as popular as I thought it will be.The service is still Available on one Network provider.The usage is still low.Just maybe the message did not go down well with the target market.I found out about the service on one of Google sites.A lot of African who do not have internet access rely on Radio and Television for information such as Daily News, Sports, Health, Weather and Stock prices.A new service like what Google provides needs a lot of marketing at least in Ghana my home country.

Filed under: Mobile, Technology, , ,

10 Marketing 2.0 Commandments.

marketing

• By knowing the lifetime value of your users, you know exactly how much you can pay to acquire new users with an acceptable profit margin
andrewchenblog
• dig into target customer’s need for the solution, real addressable market size and segments and any existing current demand for the category
First Penny
predictablyirrational
• focus on developing marketing skills that will always remain relevant. These include things like marketing psychology, diffusion of innovation, company building, customer research methods, persuasive website architecture, actionable marketing metrics…

marketing-plan-for-web-20-startups-presentation

• Success is based on a combination of access to financing, market need, exceptional product and marketing execution, tenacity, and let’s face it – luck.
• Effective customer development… By figuring out who needs your product/service, why they need it, what constitutes a gratifying experience with the product/service and getting more of the right type of people to this gratifying experience (highlighting the right benefits and reducing barriers) social media can become a powerful driver for your business too.

Filed under: Enterprise 2.0, Startups, Web 2.0, , , , ,

Startup Business Ideas

Startup Ideas
I have been looking into ideas that can possibly be turned into a company if the market analysis are done right.These are some of the ideas I have been thinking about.

•“There are plenty of customers and business partners that are willing, and even anxious, to tell a business exactly what they need, how to improve a product, or even become involved with the design and innovation process in order to contribute their experience and requirements. It is through empowering the people and letting their contributions be heard that the great advances are made.”

• Diskaunt
Online deals and discount provider which lists all available shopping discounts. Discounts on flight, hotel, bus booking, credit card, flowers, cakes, electronics, mobiles, laptops, computers books and cloths in a geographical area of customers’ preference.

• SocialShop
Social Commerce (online shopping). It helps shoppers interact and share before making decisions to purchase. Add feature that allow shoppers to create wish list with price quotations and receive sms when the price matches their wish list and in a geographic area of choice.
• Myrr
Borrow books online and add to your profile and read for a period within a period. Pay based on number of books borrowed.
You can also think around these:

• Ideas that could become new companies
• Ideas that could become new products for existing companies (mine or someone else’s)
• Ideas that could become great new features for existing products
• Ideas that could improve existing features of existing products

Filed under: Blogs, Enterprise 2.0, Ideas, Mobile, Technology, Web 2.0, , , , , ,

How to Allow Users to Submit Posts to Your Blog

Create forms for users
I started Using wordpress last week,and I must confess it has been very useful for me.I am creating a user generated site,and I want my users to submit content as well. The TDO Mini Forms Plugin has ben very useful. I downloaded the zipped file from the link sited above AND uploaded the TDO Mini Forms folder in my wordpress folder in the directory i created on my localhost. Here: .C:\Users\tom@s\workspace\wordpress\wp-content\plugins. I then went straight to the WordPress Dashboard and clicked on the Plugins link.I then activated it and clicked on the form creator which took me to the default form.I replaced the default form with custom fields.In each custom field, as I was typing the name of the field I enabled the “Append Custom Field to Post Content ” saved it and now I create post right from the site by using my own forms. I also allow users to submit posts(my custom fields are purposely built for users to submit restaurants and events in thier locality.

Filed under: Blogs, Technology, ,

TechCrunch Network Search Engine

I have been using techcrunch a lot to find out about technology news and emerging startups on the internet.Recently I stumbled upon the TechCrunch Network Search Engine .Its a great tool that has helped me tremendously.I have been looking for a site with startup directory like what techcrunch provides.All the startups featured on both TechCrunch and Crunchbase are presented in a way that makes it possible to track what they do easily. What makes it very useful fro me is that I type particular industry and it returns all the startups that are featured under it in a perfect way.Its especially useful if you are conducting research under competitive analysis.

Filed under: Enterprise 2.0, Ideas, Startups, Web 2.0, , , , , ,

15 Startup Commandments

1. Your idea isn’t new. Pick an idea; at least 50 other people have thought of it. Get over your stunning brilliance and realize that execution matters more.

2. Stealth startups suck. You’re not working on the Manhattan Project, Einstein. Get something out as quickly as possible and promote the hell out of it.

3. If you don’t have scaling problems, you’re not growing fast enough.

4. If you’re successful, people will try to take advantage of you. Hope that you’re in that position, and hope that you’re smart enough to not fall for it.

5. People will tell you they know more than you do. If that’s really the case, you shouldn’t be doing your startup.

6. Your competition will inflate their numbers. Take any startup traffic number and slash it in half. At least.

7. Perfection is the enemy of good enough. Leonardo could paint the Mona Lisa only once. You, Bob Ross, can push a bug release every 5 minutes because you were at least smart enough to do a web app.

8. The size of your startup is not a reflection of your manhood. More employees does not make you more of a man (or woman as the case may be).

9. You don’t need business development people. If you’re successful, companies will come to you. The deals will still be distractions and not worth doing, but at least you’re not spending any effort trying to get them.

10. You have to be wrong in the head to start a company. But we have all the fun.

11. Starting a company will teach you what it’s like to be a manic depressive. They, at least, can take medication.

12. Your startup isn’t succeeding? You have two options: go home with your tail between your legs or do something about it. What’s it going to be?

13. If you don’t pay attention to your competition, they will turn out to be geniuses and will crush you. If you do pay attention to them, they will turn out to be idiots and you will have wasted your time. Which would you prefer?

14. Startups are not a democracy. Want a democracy? Go run for class president, Bueller.

15. You’re doing a web app, right? This isn’t the 1980s. Your crummy, half-assed web app will still be more successful than your competitor’s most polished software application.

Filed under: Enterprise 2.0, Ideas, Startups, Technology, Web 2.0, , ,

How to Predict a High Tech Startup Success

Predicting the success of startups has always been difficult. IF founders know how they are going to fare in the coming years after a successful launch, there would not be failed startups. A lot of successful software entrepreneurs have given their advice and secrets to up and coming entrepreneurs. I have tries to aggregate some of this advice here. Enjoy:

1.Test the business viability of what you want to do
It is one thing to have a great idea for a product, or have sweet skills that would add a lot of value to potential clients. But it is quite another to fully build a product and—more importantly—make money on that product, or sustain and grow a services company over the long term. You need to sit down and honestly assess the financial viability of what you want to do. This involves asking some really hard questions: Who will buy your products or services, and why will they be compelled to? What is your unique value proposition? What kind of resources—people, infrastructure, and money—will building this company require? How much income will there be, and when will the income start flowing in? How long can you personally go without making any money? Are you willing to decrease your standard of living, if necessary, to make this work? If the numbers aren’t looking very promising in the short term, do you have a source for a loan or other type of cash infusion? How much of your time will making the company successful require? By Dirk Knemeyer of Digitalweb.

2. Hire Smart People
“Borrow brains. You aren’t smart enough to succeed on your own. Surround yourself with mentors, advisors, and winners. Read everything. Grab every idea you can get your hands on”. Andy Sernovitz. He is the author of “Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking.

3. Product and Services
If your product/service/team is very tech-oriented, be sure to also hire a web/UI designer with marketing experience to make your product compelling and easy to use. Then allow this designer affect change by focusing at least half of engineering efforts on implementing necessary changes for improving user experience. Angie Chang. She is a co-founder of Women 2.0, a networking group of young women entrepreneurs located in the Silicon Valley. She is also a web and UI designer by trade. You can find her blog at http://thisgirlangie.suprglu.com

4. Focus
Big companies jump in with their brands to try to take market share from the leader while startups pioneer new categories and sell out for millions. The benefit of operating a niche startup is that everyone who visits the site will be looking exactly for what they provide. Niche is all about being on the narrow point of the wedge; that advantage, though, is ruined when a startup tries to be everything to everyone. The larger the market, the more specialized a company must become. In the struggle for life, no two startups can occupy the same position. If they try to do so, one company will drive the other to extinction. By Jawad Shuaib, the founder of Shuzak.com: The social network for geeks.
5. Create a checklist with deadlines and assignments
Once you have the outline set up the way you want it, assign each item to the team member best equipped to handle it. Then, set a deadline for each item. Set it up as a “checklist “so you can see what you have to do, when each item has to be done, and what’s already been done. A tip I hear quite often is to use a three-point method for keeping track of the items on your checklist: 1) leave the “Done” area blank if you have not begun to work on the item, 2) add a dot or a circle
in the “Done” area if that item is currently being worked on and 3) Convert the dot/circle to a check mark once the task has been completed. Curtiss Grymala from Ten-321 Enterprises.

6. Launch early, update often
Often times, I’ve seen startups never get off the ground because they never launched their product. It sounds stupid, I know, but these are brilliant people who focused so much on a full feature set that the whole thing caught fire before they got it out of the oven. Getting your product launched is just the beginning. Content updates, monetization, and advertising are the driving point of your business, most likely. With no product, how will you ever make money? To sum it up, concentrate on your most valuable features with the highest return, launch your product, and make frequent updates. (For more information on this topic, see the Rapid Release Model methodology.) James Thomas from WackyLabs.com

Most of these tips can be found at centernetworks

Filed under: Enterprise 2.0, Startups, Technology, Web 2.0, , , ,

12 Ways To Create A Web Presence

There are so many tools and sites that are meant to help us create web applications, blogs, websites ,ecommerce sites easily. I have tried a few. Some you will find helpful and others you wish they could do more and make your life easier.Help yourself with the few I have identified

infogami
inserit
iompi
webnode
ipernity
ironspeed
weebly
wix
webs
spruz
homestead
wetpaint

Filed under: Ideas, Technology, Web 2.0, , ,

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