Oct 12th, 2008 by Dan McComb
Sep 26th, 2008 by Dan McComb
Sep 18th, 2008 by Dan McComb
Sep 15th, 2008 by Dan McComb
Lisa Johnson, who gave the keynote address at BizJam 08, is the co-author of Don’t Think Pink: What Really Makes Women Buy — and How to Increase Your Share of This Crucial Market (AMACOM, 2004), and CEO of The Reach Group. A leading corporate trainer and brand consultant, Lisa has worked with top companies nationwide and has up-to-the-minute knowledge of market forces, trends and consumers’ buying minds.
Her marketing concepts have appeared in Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge, the New York Times magazine, The Chicago Tribune and on NPR’s Marketplace. SoundViews named her first book, Don’t Think Pink, one of the top marketing books of all time.Tags: freelance, marketing, self employment, tips
BizJam teamed up with Being Media to produce video of every presentation at this year’s event, and I’m delighted to announce publication of the first video: Ami Kassar speaking about how to guerrilla market your business idea using ideablob. Enjoy.Tags: business idea, collaboration, entrepreneur, social media, starting a business
Jul 26th, 2008 by Dan McComb
Shortly after BizJam we emailed everyone who attended BizJam Seattle 08, and promised to give away an iPhone 3G to one lucky person who completed the survey. We sent out the survey to 213 conference attendees, and got back 115 responses, a 54 percent response rate. I guess everyone really wanted that iPhone! As promised we did a random drawing, and the lucky winner turns out to be Tracy Albright an Active member of Biznik who hails from Mercer Island. Congratulations, Tracy!
And thanks to everyone who completed the survey - there’s a huge volume of information in there, and we’re slowly digesting it, and will be using the information to make big improvements in the next BizJam.
We’ll share what we found out in a future post.No Tags
It’s not very often that you work with vendors who do things like make house calls to ensure that your project gets done on time. So when Rick Sader showed up on our doorstep with signs he’d printed (over the weekend, nonetheless), I was impressed. And you probably were too, if you saw any of the signs at BizJam. Lone Eagle Digital Imaging was a sponsor of BizJam Seattle this year, and printed all of the gorgeous (not to mention environmentally-friendly-printed-on-recycled-board) signs and banners used at the conference.
I interviewed Rick to find out a bit more about who he is and how he runs his business…
Q: Briefly describe your company and what you do.
Lone Eagle helps people and companies communicate in a big colorful way. We do this by producing a huge range of large-format digital graphics that are used in backlit displays, vinyl & fabric banners, convention & tradeshow graphics, vehicle wraps, window graphics, non-slip floor graphics, photo & fine art reproductions… the list is long.
Q: Have you always wanted to run your own business?
No. The plan ever since my under-grad days was to get my chemical engineering degree and go to school part-time for grad school while working for some big company. That plan was on track except for a couple of “small exceptions”.
Getting laid off from a couple of jobs for reasons outside of my control left a bad taste in my mouth for working for someone else (so maybe the seed for entrepreneurship was planted then). Both of those layoffs resulted in earning a master’s degree. The first was an MBA and the second was an MS in polymer science. It wasn’t until I started working for HP in San Diego that I really had a great job for a great company in a great place. It was…. Great.
Q: How / when did the idea of your company come about?
One day my wife, who is a busy oncologist, came home from work and had just had it. The university where she worked was giving pay cuts to everyone and asking them to do more with less. That started her job hunt. Not knowing where we would end up started me thinking of what I could do to enable us to be open to moving where she could find a great job. By that time, I was getting a little restless at HP anyway so the idea of starting my own business was really appealing. Since I was an R&D engineer developing inkjet printers for HP, the prospect of starting my own service bureau sounded great. I knew a lot about the technology, the materials, the applications, and the markets. One day, HP released their newest large-format inkjet printer – a 60”-wide machine that cost about $20k. The first customer that bought it paid for it with the very first job they had! That started my in-depth planning. That was in late 2000. We moved away from San Diego in Dec 2002 and I officially started Lone Eagle Digital Imaging, LLC in April 2003.
Q: How many hours do you work a day on average?
At HP, my time spent working was typically from 7am – 5pm and it was digital - I was either working or not. Now I put in longer days but it’s at all hours, it’s split up throughout the day, and it’s all for the benefit of MY business, not for someone else’s. I may “start” at 6am and “finish” at 11pm but being self-employed gives me a lot of freedom to other important things during the day. Since my wife is an over-worked oncologist, I pick up a lot of the slack around the house and with our 11-year-old son. For example, I drive him to school, swim team, Tae Kwando, etc. which Vicky could never do. Here’s another great example. Since I work at home, Andy & I are doing “independent study” of 6th grade math this summer. If all goes well, when he enters 6th grade in the fall, he can go right into 7th grade math class. I could never do that with him in any of my previous jobs. Isn’t that awesome?!
Q: What was the last book you read?
I read a lot. It helps you make connections among disparate, seemingly dissimilar subjects. I’ll give you three that I highly recommend:
1. Super Capitalism (Robert Reich) – our behavior as consumers is quite often at odds with our behavior as citizens (think about buying a car).
2. Memo to the President Elect (Madeline Albright) – our next president has a lot of mending to do. I met Dr. Albright at a book signing sponsored by the Seattle Chamber of Commerce.
3. Who’s Your City (Richard Florida) – even though we have email, the web, video conferencing, etc., there are still plenty of economic & social benefits to living in a diverse community that’s right for you and your work (I’m living THAT premise right now).
Q: Who are your role models / mentors and why?
Charles Lindbergh is my hero and namesake of my company. He had a remarkable life. I guess I’m in the market for a mentor.
Q: If you could give blog readers one piece of advice what would it be?
I’d give them the same advice that I should be following more closely myself. When business is slow, you gotta focus on working ON your business, not IN your business. This concept crept up again last Thursday nite as I was chatting with Lara from Biznik at The Mcleod Residence. She confessed she’s also guilty of this. For me, I’m not gonna get more business by testing a new media to print on or by tweaking the ICC profile for an existing media to get slightly better color. Those things, however, are easy, I like doing them, and makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something. A far better use of my time, albeit more difficult, would be to contact & develop relationships with potential clients. This is far more important, but because it’s harder, and the risk of rejection is there, and maybe I’m not very good at it, it doesn’t get done nearly enough. Lecture over.
Q: Do you have any future expansion plans?
Big time.No Tags
Here’s another album of great BizJam photos. Leave a comment with a link to your photos if you’ve uploaded some.No Tags
Lots of BizJammers have been blogging about their experiences at BizJam. Here’s a list of all the posts I could find:
Tiffani Jones: Using Twitter and Other Tools to Grow Business.
Stacy Karacostas: BizJam Seattle 08 and why I love Biznik for small-business social networking.
Ilise Benun: Ilise’s BizJam highlights.
Barbie Hull: Whitney Keyes - local celebrity!.
Office Nomads blog: BizJam Seattle 2008.
Curt Rosengren: 9 ways to help people help you.
Bob Dunn: BizJam Seattle 08 - Day 2.
Judy Dunn: We’re Jammin’: Seattle BizJam 08.
Aliza Sherman: Speaking at BizJam Seattle, or, The Power of Social Media.No Tags