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Friday, April 28, 2017

5 Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make When Pitching Their Ideas to Investors

Entrepreneurs tend to work quite hard to nail down meetings with investors. It usually takes a combination of good targeting, persistence and finding a way in. As an investor, what has astounded me over the years -- after listening to thousands of pitches -- is that many entrepreneurs do not put the same effort in preparing for an initial meeting as they do in securing it. Below are what I have found to be the five most common oversights that can turn a meeting sideways. The good news is that each of them is not only completely avoidable but, if addressed properly, can lead to fruitful discussions. Related: 6 Tips for Overcoming a 'No' When Seeking Funding 1. Not knowing your audience. Many first-time entrepreneurs tend to get so excited to speak with investors that they forget to do a little homework to understand who they are meeting with and how a particular investor may be a good fit for their startup. This is setting an entrepreneur up for failure. It’s critical to under..

5 Steps to Identifying Potential Investors That Are Right for You

Fundraising for a startup is one of the most exhilarating and nerve-racking experiences for an entrepreneur. At the outset, the world seems like an open oyster, where many opportunities abound. In the U.S. alone, there are nearly 1,000 VC funds and hundreds of thousands of individual investors, or "angels." With so many options, the mission would appear to be straightforward. Alas, don't let the numbers fool you. Fundraising in the best of cases takes several months, and if you're not careful, it can become interminable. However, it doesn't have to be that way. Here are five steps you can take to make the process more productive and efficient. Related: 6 Funding Strategies to Start a Business When You're Low on Money 1. Create a relevant target list.This is the critical first step. Narrowing your options is key to an efficient process. For a seed round, you'll want to identify funds and individuals who have a track record in the market segment that you're ..

5 Lessons Entrepreneurs Can Learn from Israeli Tech Founders

I've spent the majority of my adult life working closely with tech startups as an investor and advisor. These companies typically have been led by entrepreneurs born and bred in the U.S. These companies' founders either spent some portion of their growing-up years in the States or received business training in American colleges and development programs. I've been privileged to be involved with rising stars such as SeatGeek and Adaptly. In my time with Dreamit Ventures, General Assembly and other endeavors, I've spent time with hundreds of aspiring entrepreneurs and gotten to know them at the earliest stages of their journeys. That "home-grown" focus shifted about 18 months ago when I decided to co-found ICONYC labs, an accelerator program exclusively for Israeli startups. Our family now counts 15 companies among our diverse group of founders: 20- through 40-something year-olds, men, women and native-born residents as well as transplants. I've spent countless h..

13 Amazing Black-Owned Software and Technology Companies

There are hundreds of software and technology companies in the U.S. Some of the top well-knwon ones include Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, and Google

For minorities in tech, workplace discrimination begins before they even arrive

Shireen Mitchell, the founder of Digital Sisters and Stop Online Violence Against Women, knows firsthand the challenges women of color face when interviewing for jobs in the tech industry. That is, if they can land an interview at all.

Hammer & Nails Raises $200,000 From Shark Tank Viewers

Michael Elliot, a Hollywood screenwriter-turned-entrepreneur who wrote Brown Sugar and Just Wright, saw a need for a nail shop that caters to entrepreneurs, athletes, mechanics, and men who take proper care of their appearance and hygiene.

5 Online Basics Your Business Needs to Survive

It’s no secret that the internet has taken over the world.

10 Gadgets to Help You Sleep Better

Can’t sleep? There’s an app for that. Or at least a gadget.

The Keys to Success Behind a Multi-Million-Dollar Construction Company

Any business -- whether it's washing windows or consulting -- needs to take advantage of technology or risk losing out on precious customers to...

Essential Web Skills Every Modern Entrepreneur Must Have

Everyone and their great-grandmother has heard of the internet.

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The FTC takes a huge jab at Influencers

In a landmark bout of activity, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has announced that it is, in fact, watching celebrities, athletes, and other influencers...

4chan’s new racist code: How alt-right trolls are harassing Jews, Muslims and black people

Take a moment to cherish your favorite candies and search engines — you never know when the alt-right is going to appropriate them.

Students suspended after 1 dawns blackface, mocks Black Lives Matter in Snapchat videos

Two students were suspended from Albright College this week after they posted a series of video Snapchats in which one of them — a white woman — is wearing blackface.

4 Key Ways to Optimize Your YouTube Channel and Content

Keywords and relevance decide the ranking of your web pages in Google, and unsurprisingly, the same applies to Google-owned YouTube.