Monday, May 10, 2010

So you want to start a web comic

So you want to start a web comic

    One of the most common questions I get is “Hey Jeph! I want to start a webcomic of my own, BUT I DON’T KNOW HOW!!! WHAT DO I DO?!?!?!”


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

12 Pervasive Myths About Starting a Small Business

12 Pervasive Myths About Starting a Small Business
    Few subjects are as plagued by myths and falsehoods as starting a small business. Everywhere you turn, someone is making sweeping proclamations about small businesses – the difficulty of starting one, the risks involved, the odds of failure or what you “have to do” in order to make it. And unlike in some fields, myths about small business are not simply harmless old wives tales. Rather than leaving you to fend for yourself against business dogma, Business Pundit assembled – and debunked – this list of 12 pervasive myths about running a small enterprise.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

How This Kid Made $170 Million in Two Years

Good slide show:

How This Kid Made $170 Million in Two Years

The article breaks it down to these five steps:

Step 1: Create a product that makes a difficult, tedious task easy and fun

Step 2: Choose a market that's really, really big.

Step 3: Develop a business model that actually allows you to, well, make money.

Step 4: Don't pay to acquire customers. Ever.

Step 5: Be a compete stickler about who you hire.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Selling your business, selling your idea

In almost all cases, no matter how mundane your business, product or idea, you can make it something exciting and desireable with presentation.

These are both joke videos, but watch how they take the mundane and change it into something exciting:

"My First Year in Business"

My First Year in Business

    What we think we need for money and resources to start a business is often not accurate. Depending on the type of business, you might need to outlay some cash early, but when it came to resources, we were able to launch without new computers (we primarily used our own personal laptops); we went without a fancy website (we put one together four or five months into the business, but we relied on my blog to drive awareness); and we went without any traditional marketing whatsoever (we used blogging, speaking gigs, and Twitter to land 100% of our business). Our costs were almost all salary since our business is consulting.

    Sure, our office didn’t have an amazing view. Our chairs and desks weren’t in top condition (they worked‚ mostly). We didn’t run out and buy Macbook Pros right away. We used our personal cell phones. But they all helped us get the job done.

    Takeaway: Focus on what you need to drive the business, not the “trappings” of a company.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

One way to start a business: define a new niche

In this video, the business owner creates a new niche and then creates a unique way to fill it.

One thing you will notice is the ferns and plants. This echoes back to another "new niche" idea - the fern bar. Before the first fern bar, bars were dark caves filled with smoke. The fern bar redefined bars (a key feature being plants and ferns, and enough light to support them), and made bars much friendlier to women. Today's Friday's, Applebee's, etc. chains are all modern descendents of fern bars.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

More on Imgur

We first discussed Imgur here. Some recent news:

Meet Alan Schaaf: Creater, Designer, Coder of One of the Fastest Growing Sites on the Net:

I'm the Imgur guy, AMA!

From 2 months ago:

Just noticed imgur is doing 20TB of bandwidth a month! They do not seem to advertise much at all, how can the afford this bandwidth when some hosts give you 2-3,000GB and 25c a gig extra. That badwidth bill would be 5k a month at most hosts or am I missing something?
    I have an unmetered 100Mbps connection at SoftLayer. They have really nice datacenters, but don't count on their support.

    It doesn't cost 5K a month either. SoftLayer has a couple of sister sites that offer cheaper bandwidth. However, Imgur is costing me more than my rent o_o. I'm able to make just enough to break even with ads and donations.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Homeless Man Builds $5 million Website

Homeless Man Builds 5mln Dollar Website

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Omegle - A fast riser is one of those site that appears out of nowhere, catches people the right way and rises instantly. It has also been able to sustain traffic over 2 weeks because it keeps getting mentioned as new people discover it. Look at the Alexa rank:

Alexa stats for Omegle

Here's a typical blog post - the kind that has given this site traffic over the last two weeks:

xkcd on Omegle

Omegle has a Good, short, unique name that is easy to remember. It has a simple concept that is easy to explain. It has simple, clean execution on its idea.

Monday, February 23, 2009

A new site

Here is a new site created by a single person. It is simple in concept and nicely implemented. I do not know how long it will last, because he may have underestimated bandwidth costs, but perhaps he has deep pockets or receives enough donations. Excellent URL too:

His description is simple enough:
    imgur is an image sharer. It allows you to upload a picture, manipulate it, and share it with your friends, post it on reddit, add it to your blog, email it, etc.

    imgur is equivalent to sites such as ImageShack, TinyPic, and PhotoBucket, except that it's much easier to use, faster, without ads, and free.

He announced it on and got a great first-day response:

My Gift to Reddit: I created an image hosting service that doesn't suck. What do you think?

It will be interesting to come back in a month and see where he is at.