Introduction to John Should I do a startup now? Good idea? Sprint from zero to start Elevator pitch Pitch deck Executive summary Marketing selling and branding Slogan battlecry Visual hammer Names you need Strategy Get the money Get rich numbers
In this short lesson you’ll learn who John is and why he created this course: Start 1 Now - For Entrepreneurs in a Hurry • In this lesson, he explains the source for his passion to assist budding entrepreneurs to increase their chances of success. • And John describes the origins of the material he presents in the course Start 1 Now. He tells how the material for the course has been collected: Over 40 years, from coaching over 300 startups that have raised over $2 billion in venture financing. Bootstraps, sole proprietorships, small businesses, and unicorns. Sale of the company and IPOs. As well as those that ceased business. He presents why he is convinced you to want to quickly learn from the best of the best entrepreneurs. After all, why make the same startup errors others did? Like serial entrepreneurs did, you also can learn from others. How to boost the chances of success in doing your new enterprise. • John explains where in the course you’ll find knowhow and get tools you need to get up and running quickly. He shows companies from which he has gathered the best insiders’ skills, presented ready to learn and apply to your startup. Know-how from decades of experienced entrepreneurs. • John also shows that it’s important to enjoy the course and have some fun along the way. Why that should be part of your trek to get your startup going. What makes it an adventure, without which it’s just a lot of hard, often discouraging work. He shows that the lessons (he dubs each a Kwick Kourse) are quick and are composed of short sessions called Snippets. Each is brief, focused, and immediately useful. Contents include processes and methods, plus tips, tools, checklists, charts, and $ models. Learning from serial entrepreneurs from over 300 companies and clever startups, as well as those that are not around.
This Quick Course is about You! Doing a startup is an important question. It will be life-changing. John shows what will impact your life today and in the future, discussing what to think about so you’ll make a wise decision. He delivers the material in 5 short Snippets: 1. What are your dreams? 2. Are you an entrepreneur? 3. What is your situation? 4. Find your what, why and how 5. What is required of you? + What is your decision? Plus, you’ll be shown “How To Sketch Your Idea” for documenting a short-cut plan for your startup, like serial entrepreneurs have learned to do so well. Plus, there is a free valuable bonus at the conclusion. Content includes Checklists during the Snippets, to pace your thinking. Examples and materials are from the best of the best: • Famous companies • Clever startups • Amazing people • Serial entrepreneurs • Different kinds of businesses • Personal savings • Angels and venture capitalists The same lessons apply to all ambitions, sizes of potential enterprises: • Solo startups • Small businesses • Personally financed • Humble beginnings
This is about how to add power to your Starting Point - your idea for a product or service. One that could turn into a great business. Others have done it, you can too! This course focuses on a central question for startup founders: What Makes a Good Idea? John shows how and why your initial idea is just the starting point, how stepping forward – seeking to add competitive power - initiate a process during which you will begin to alter your idea week after week. Your idea begins as a lump of clay in a sculptor’s hands, with a dream about the beautiful thing it could lead to a successful business. From that starting point, your idea will begin being altered, as you get more information, learn more, discover and bump into surprises. Armed with that fresh knowledge, your responses start shaping the initial idea into something increasingly different, each modification aimed at boosting its appeal, strengthening its competitive advantage, reducing the risks in your future business. That’s part of crafting your recipe for a tasty startup. Three starting questions are then presented and discussed: 1. What is your idea all about? 2. How will you make money with it? 3. If it is such a good idea, why is no one else doing it? Next, come three more questions: 1. How compelling is it to customers? 2. How large ($ sales?) Could it become? 3. Who is the competition? John explains how serial entrepreneurs focus on finding out what is compelling, what gets the customer excited, eager to purchase it He shows the dangers of falling into the trap of aiming to be “Quicker, faster, better” than competing products and services. The lesson moves on to what is meant by “BORING is BAD”. And explains instead what your idea should be aimed to become: Amazing. Specific examples of real startups are given, with details about why startup veterans did what they did with their initial idea. Next, a detailed example is given of how startup marketing professionals think about, focus on and quantify the ideal customers for their product. The course concludes discussing how this is process involves changes, sometimes radical ones know as pivoting, but more often are more moderate changes. And that founders need guts, courage, and bravery to make big changes. When you finish this course, you’ll be confident you can respond to tough questions people will ask when you tell them about your great idea. And you’ll leave provoked to ponder what you might do with your current idea.
In the next four short sessions - Snippets - John will step through what an Elevator Pitch is all about and how you can build an effective one. He will show you: • What an elevator pitch is and • Why it’s very important. And what it can do for you. • Then he explains how to swiftly design an elevator pitch that gets the job done. • John concludes by examining a real elevator pitch. When you finish this quick course you’ll give you a Kool Tool: a Checklist for constructing your own elevator pitch.
Creating a Presentation That Impresses In this quick course, John explains how to create a “Pitch Deck” that will attract venture investors and attractive employees, as well as triggers “buzz” - responses by bloggers and media He explains that a presentation of your plan for your idea assumes • You have a Good Idea • You have a committed and able Core Team • You have crafted an effective Elevator Pitch • Your Executive Summary is comprehensive and compelling He takes care to note that a Pitch Deck is not a substitute for a well-thought-through business plan. And that its main purpose is to get the money – to fuel the launch of your business. Serial entrepreneurs learned that the best story gets the money. And that it has a central focus: it explains how you will build an “Unfair (Competitive) Advantage” in a lucrative new market that you have a chance to dominate John explains what your Pitch Deck must be to accomplish its purpose: • Keep it Short • Make it Innovative • Make it Exciting • Make it Complete • Craft it Well He implores you to do with your Pitch Deck what serial entrepreneurs do: Practice delivery, practice, practice. When you are finished with this Kourse, you’ll know how to craft a Pitch Deck that will wow your audience.
Executive Summary: Design and Construction In 4 Quick Steps This course consists of 4 Snippets 1. When 2. Why 3. Content 4. Tips Also included is a Kool Tool: an Executive Summary Checklist Plus an example of a complete Executive Summary In the first of four Snippets, John focuses on When you will need an Executive Summary. In Snippet 2, he explains its role and Why you need an excellent Executive Summary. John begins by explaining what makes the Executive Summary a special document: Stirs Emotions Summarizes your Story Expands Facts Entices people to say “Come present to me in person.” Snippet 3 displays the Content that adds power to a compelling Executive Summary. Included there are Kool Tool: Checklist - Executive Summary Example of an Executive Summary John concludes in Snippet 4 by giving you tips learned by serial entrepreneurs who created great Executive Summaries. Upon completing this Kourse you will be able to create an Executive Summary that will be comprehensive and compelling.
This course will reveal the tricks great founders used to add Marketing Power to their plans for amazing startups. In 4 Steps John takes you into the exciting world of startup marketing, revealing what powers startups to the top – and what flops. How victorious entrepreneurs plugged into the Marketing power sources and left the competition far behind. You will walk through 4 Snippets: 1. Marketing & Selling 2. Branding 3. Buzz & PR 4. Marketing Plan Included is a Kool Tool: a Marketing Checklist for you to immediately apply to the plan for your business. John digs into and explains several key marketing questions every founder must be prepared to answer: • What is Marketing power? • Where does Sales fit in? • How can I build a strong Brand? • What makes Marketing Communications (buzz and PR) powerful? • What goes into a great Marketing plan? When you finish this course, you’ll feel confident of choosing which marketing tools to power your startup to amazing success. Like the great serial entrepreneurs do it.
John explains what is special about marketing and selling for startups, and what to do about it when crafting your hiring plan.
John takes you into the world of marketing gurus - the brilliant ones who created the famous brands you well know. He walks you through a series of questions and gives responses you’ll need as you craft your plan to market your idea. And he discusses four questions that you will use to create your own Branding plan. • What is a Brand? • What is Branding? • Why is Branding so difficult? • What is wow? And why do you have to have it? • What is Positioning? • What do Words have to do with Branding? • Who is the Ideal Customer? • Why is Focus important? • Where do Bowling Pins enter Branding plans? When you finish this Snippet, you’ll be up to steam with the best of the best – with Branding know-how few others ever learn.
John explains in this Snippet how to avoid mistakes and choose what makes marketing communications add power to your marketing. This Snippet is focused on the tricks and tips serial entrepreneurs use in crafting their plan for communicating their branding message to their Ideal Customers. John explains it’s all about marketing communications – Marcom – commonly referred to as Buzz and PR. He begins discussing the similarities and differences between Buzz and PR. Then proceeds to explain Messaging crafting, Media choices and why serial entrepreneurs learned the hard way that startups never advertise. Examples are given of media choices for Industrial and Consumer startups. John reveals the issues you will encounter making decisions on Messages, Media, Methods, $Budget and Calendar for Marcom. When you finish this Snippet, you’ll be able to craft your message, select your Media and Calendar, and decide on your $Budget for the Marcom section of your marketing plan.
It’s time for you to learn the what and how of crafting a marketing plan to power your idea to success. John begins explaining what goes into a marketing plan that is comprehensive and rolls over the competition. Marketing Plan: Sections required 1. Opportunity & Need 2. Our Solution 3. Size of Market 4. Competition & Strategy 5. Marketing Communications 6. Customer Support 7. Financials Each section is explained in detail, with real-world examples. Dos and don’ts are discussed so you can see the good and not so good. Insights from serial entrepreneurs are revealed and discussed in detail. Qualitative and numerical requirements are explained carefully so you can work on your numbers right away. At the conclusion is a Kool Tool: a Checklist for examining your plan for Marketing Selling and Branding. As you complete this final Snippet, you’ll realize you are now in charge of your marketing thinking and can start immediately crafting a plan that will wow! your Ideal Customers, excite bloggers, attract potential employees, and impress venture investors.
This course is about how to create a critical weapon for your upcoming marketing battle. It’s about the creation of a clever Slogan that becomes the Battlecry for your idea as you charge into your new market – where you’ll face fierce competitors. John reveals what serial entrepreneurs have done – well and not so well – with slogans for their ideas. Examples are given of slogans that powered ideas to become great brands, while others are shown to be disappointments. He explains the selection of a slogan is part of the process of crafting a real brand, and thus deserves careful and focused creativity. John uses famous brands to explain the purpose of the slogan, its major function, and the ultimate objective. He gives examples to clarify the importance of the careful selection of words that the Brand requires. And John spends time explaining one of the secrets serial entrepreneurs have learned: Great startups create and set out to dominate a new market category. He discusses the importance of not making errors of Abstract versus Specific wording. And where many brands trip up misusing Taglines. John discusses the tests for Ideal Customers to retain Memorability – mental glue – of the slogan attached to a Brand. And he explains how to use the Slogan as part of spreading your Brand via Word-of-mouth. John walks through examples of Slogans, going through 7 sections, revealing tips and tricks for crafting a Slogan Battlecry: 1. Rhyme 2. Alliteration 3. Repetition 4. Reversal 5. Double-Entendre 6. Leadership 7. Combinations When you finish this Kourse, you can immediately start crafting a Slogan that can become your Battlecry for your plan to build a brand that becomes a powerhouse, dominating a new market category.
John takes you to a world overlooked by all but the most victorious marketing minds: the Visual Hammer. He explains what a Visual Hammer is and it's objective. Then proceeds to show you how to create one. John spends time discussing how to bring emotions into the choice of Visual Hammer. Then he walks through 10 kinds of Visual Hammers. Real examples of famous brands are used to explain each kind. 10 Hammers: 1. Shape: Simple 2. Color: Opposite 3. Product 4. Package: Different 5. Founder 6. Symbol: Visualizing 7. Celebrity 8. Animal 9. Heritage 10. Combinations John then shows the important elements needed to be prepared before you begin to come up with a clever Visual Hammer. When you complete this Kourse you’ll be able to create and put to work the most overlooked tool used by world-class startup founders who established great Brands.
John reveals the family of Names your plan needs, beyond the brand and company names. Great names you need: 1. Company 2. Brand 3. Technology 4. Category He explains how to use 6 elements of naming to create the mental glue needed in the mind of your Ideal Customer and how they must complement each other to become the family you need. 1. Unique 2. Alliterative 3. Speakable 4. Spellable - without errors, accurate recall. 5. Shocking John then walks through a series of Examples of real names and shows the good and not so good Names. He shows the importance of including choices that combine words and sounds. When you finish this Kourse you’ll understand the Names you need and what to use as you craft a family for your business idea.
John clarifies and explains the most misused and misunderstood part of marketing: the choice of marketing strategy. He begins by defining what it is – and not. Shows how errors in choosing strategy are fatal to Brands. Then John gives real examples of which of the 4 Strategies were used by world-class entrepreneurs as they prepared to go to battle competitors in a new market space. 1. Defender 2. Offensive 3. Flanking 4. Guerrilla He explains the principles of each Strategy, and where errors are made choosing one, concluding with which is most likely to succeed – and why – for a startup. When you finish this Kourse you’ll feel like a marketing general – able to choose the Strategy that will win as you go into combat, aiming to capture the leadership position of a lucrative new Category.
Which $ source is the best to fuel your startup? John focuses on showing you what your choices are and what each can do to fuel your new enterprise. He covers 4 key questions in this Kourse: 1. What are investors looking for?’ 2. Where are the sources of startup money? 3. What distinguishes a “good” Business Plan? 4. What is a good process for preparing a capital raising campaign? John takes you through 5 Snippets. The first gives answers to the initial questions: 1. What are investors looking for and where are the sources of startup money? Snippet 2 opens the door to the most prolific source of money for startups: 2. Informal Sources Snippet 3 dives into the strange and sometimes scary world of angels and venture capitalists: 3. Venture Capital Snippet 4 enters even more worlds of money for startups: 4. Formal: More Sources Snippet 5 explains what the process for raising startup capital is all about: 5. What is a good process for preparing a capital raising campaign?
John explains what to expect from meetings with potential investors. The questions they'll ask and what numbers they'll want to see.
John describes the vast sources of money for startups that come from other than formal venture capital firms or angels.
John goes into detail explaining how angels and venture capital professionals think and act. He expands this session to show fresh sources from new money pools.
John expands further the exploration of startup sources of money, starting with your current employer. Dozens of pools of funds are explained and suggested for specific startup needs.
John walks you through the steps to get the money. Methods and timing are explained, as well as the risks involved.
Financials - course description John shows you how to get financial numbers that make sense, fast. In the course “Get Rich Numbers”, he explains what financial numbers you need, their purpose, and how to get them – without feeling a bit scared of the unknown world of finance and financial numbers: Snippet 1 • Forecasting and modeling your Financial Statements • Income Statement • Balance Sheet • Cash Flow Statement Snippet 2: “Valuing the Company & Wealth Creation” consists of 4 Sections in which John steps through details of putting a financial value on your startup and shows you how much wealth you could create. 1. Introduction 2. Capital Required + Investors’ Questions 3. 7 steps to the money: Example 4. Example: Detailed $ Valuation John begins by emphasizing that every company needs $ Numbers. • $ Sole Proprietor • $$ Small Business • $$$ Venture Capital Backed Startup • $$$$ Unicorn He is aware that most people are afraid of numbers, especially finding financial numbers strange and hard to make sense of. And founders do not know how to forecast financial statements. John goes on to show how financial numbers are simple to understand, easy to get, and quick to put to use in your plan for your new enterprise. In this course he discusses the key financial questions you will be expected to respond to: • “How much money will we need?” • “How big a business could this be?” • “How many people need to be hired?” • “How valuable is our start-up?” Tip: John notes how you too can do what serial entrepreneurs do: use a simple financial model to boost the speed of producing the financial numbers you will need. He gives an example of the financial model he uses: QuickUp™ • Simple model in Excel • Real world • Pre-loaded $ As Snippet 1 begins, John discusses how the purpose of a financial forecast is to tell your story about your idea – in numbers. He emphasizes the financial forecast is not a forecast of the future. Rather, it is a “plausible outcome” and thus a “story”. John goes on to explain how to understand and use • The Big 3 Financial Statements • Key ratios (what & why) • Apply them to constructing the plan for your startup. In detail, he walks through what each of the family of key financial statements is, how they are inter-related, and how to interpret each: 1. Income Statement? 2. Balance Sheet? 3. Cash Flow Statement? 4. How are they linked, do they work together?
When you finish this and the remaining Snippets, you will understand The purpose of financial statements The basics of the big 3 Financial Statements What the key ratios are for startups, and why they are important How to apply this lesson to the creation of your plan for your business And you will be able to answer the key questions about your financial numbers: 1. “How much money will we need?” 2. “How big a business could this be?” 3. “How many people need to be hired?” Then it’s time to move on to Snippet 2 which is focused on: 1. “How valuable is our start-up?” 2. “How much wealth could we create, for whom?
John shows how to calculate the amount of cash you'll need to finance your startup. Then he walks through questions venture investors will expected you to be ready to answer.
John explains how to understand how startups are valued. Using an example, he walks through 7 steps to arrive at a $ valuation.
John values a company by going through very detailed steps and calculations to make it clear how you can do the same for your startup.
John concludes this quick course discussing the "Winning Recipe" - all the ingredients you can use to create an outstanding plan for a great business. He walks you through how to use each element from the lessons in this Kourse, completing the integration of all you’ve seen and heard. Putting it all Together • What are the important points to recall? • What is it important for high tech startups? • How do you create a “final integration”? • What makes a “Plausible Story?” • Apply to your work John returns to the purpose of this quick course: • Learn about real startups • Grasp secrets of the winners • Equip you for better success And explains the resources you now know you’ll need to acquire. And points to your back of tools you’ve gathered by completing this Kourse. He returns you to the Kourse Focus: “How to convert an original idea into a great business Then John shows that “You’ve learned a lot!” as he walks you through each of the ingredients for a great recipe: • Process • Strategy • Unfair Advantage • Funding Sources • Business Model • Business Plan • Ideal Customer • Marketing • Selling • Branding • Public Relations and Advertising • Financials • Operations • Legal • Leadership • Managing • Recruiting and Retaining People • Pricing Your Deal • The IPO He reminds you to start with the heart of a great idea: • Figure out what is Compelling? • What gets the customer excited? And he includes a discussion of leadership, managing, culture, recruiting & retaining people. Finally, John gives you a hearty “Congratulations! You did it!” and wises you The Best on your Adventure!