Monday, March 30, 2009

Is Twitter Good for Business?

I wish Twitter were like Craig's List, where you could flag people who are abusing it. I wish it were like Blogger, where you can block comments.

I find Twitter to be a bit strange. Suddenly people you don't know are "following you." Facebook is better because at least your friends follow you, or if you're famous, it's your fans.

People told me that Twitter would build my business. I wonder. I'm going to try to use it strategically and see what happens.

Stay tuned.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Marketing Your Invention

I'm giving a talk to the IACT inventors' group on Tuesday, March 31, at Fairfield University on Entrepreneurial Marketing. Read on:

Tuesday, March 31st • 7PM
This is a free public meeting in which all inventors, tinkerers and "would-be" inventors are welcome.

Room 107 C in the DiMenna-Nyselius Library at Fairfield University

The meeting will feature Wyn Lydecker, a marketing communications expert, who will speak to the
group on how inventors can successfully market their inventions by using Entrepreneurial Marketing, wherein inventors concentrate on creating customer value rather focusing on the technical wonders of their inventions.


Wyn Lydecker is a marketing communications expert and owner of Upstart Business Planning. She uses her 30 years of experience in marketing and entrepreneurial business planning to consult with business owners and craft clear, dynamic strategic plans and marketing documents. Her business plans answer the questions investors ask most. Her clients have raised between $35,000 and $9 million in capital. Her marketing communications materials have played instrumental roles in helping small and medium-size businesses boost awareness and sales. She holds an MBA from the Wharton School and a BA in Economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Learn more at Ms. Lydecker's Web site: www.upstartbusiness and her blog:

Please contact Doug Lyon at (203)641-6293 for more information.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Builders Looking for New Opportunities

Fascinating... I know that two observations don't necessarily show a trend, but in the past two weeks, two sets of builders have approached me with ideas for new businesses. They've told me that they have lots of building projects on hold. Banks aren't lending. Everything is stuck. That's why they're looking for ways to start alternate businesses. They're taking their business expertise and their observations of societal trends and creating new businesses.

This is what I mean by entrepreneurs and small business owners getting us out of the recession. Congress is just fighting and grandstanding. The mobs are staging a revolution against the guys pulling in the big bucks. But the entrepreneur is looking for needs to fill and clever ways to do it.

The builders in question came to me to help them develop their plans. (Don't ask me what they're doing. I signed NDAs (Non-Disclosure Agreements).) They're smart enough to see the needs and to get help in areas where they lack expertise. Builders understand hiring sub-contractors, while they take care of the vision and pulling everything together. They understand the value of building a team to get things done.

That is the essence of what builds our country and will continue to create new jobs and new opportunities.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Power of Small Business

When I visited a client yesterday in a small business building in Stamford, CT, I walked down a hallway lined with closed doors. Each door had a sign for a different company posted next to it. And I thought, "This is the heart of America. All these little businesses, owned by entrepreneurs. This is what we are made of and is what will save us."

Earlier in the day, President Obama signed a bill to help small businesses access capital from the SBA. That made me very happy because, over 90% of the jobs in our country are generated by small businesses. The ones in my client's building range from sports to the environment to Internet to God knows what. Americans are loaded with ideas of how to fill needs. We are very inventive and clever. But most importantly, we have a great work ethic. To start or run a successful business, you have to be willing to work long hours.

Recessions tend to bring the entrepreneur out in people. When you have no job, it's much easier to take the risk of starting your own business and creating your own job.