Presenting Ventures and Successes at DemoCamp Boston

On April 6, I attended DemoCamp Boston at the Hult International Business School in Cambridge, Mass.

The event consisted of seven presentations of startup companies, as well as a kick-off speech by successful entrepreneur and president of Harkador Partners Brad Harkavy on “10 Things Entrepreneurs Should Know.”

What should entrepreneurs know, you may ask?

According to Harkavy:

  1. You are not the only one with your idea
  2. Timing is everything
  3. Secrecy rarely helps
  4. Your company will survive one or two direct hits
  5. Understand your market size (TAM)
  6. Media coverage is really fun, but also a huge distraction.
  7. Your business plan will change
  8. Patents are a marketing tool
  9. First to market is not enough
  10. More Oxygen in startup offices (a personal belief of Harkavy)

Representatives from startups peerTransfer, Rate It Green, InstantNightlife, DailyFeats, Innovation Nights, and Vizibility all had five minutes to present their venture, business plan and main goals and then had the chance to receive five minutes of feedback from the audience. After advice, critiques and ideas were exchanges, participants and audience members had the chance to stay, eat, drink and network with one another (which nearly everyone took advantage of).

Mariana Espinosa Kicked Off DemoCamp Boston with Hult dean Henrik Totterman. Click the photo for more.

The most interesting startup presented (in my opinion) was Vizibility, a company that uses SEO to enhance your visibility through Google searches. As a junior in college getting ready to apply to full-time jobs next May, I think this way of curating a top five list of Google links for myself would be a great way to help our future employers, as well as weed out any “bad” or “unhelpful” links individuals may get when they Google my name.


The Wonderful World of Twitter

I created a Twitter account last spring when I was on co op in New York City. My boss was obsessed with Twitter, and would almost always open up our daily meeting with “I saw on Twitter today…” followed by an excerpt from an interesting article or comment about a newsworthy event that had occurred that day, though once or twice it was a ridiculous statement by a celebrity (cough, cough, Lindsay Lohan).

Then, I used Twitter to publicize the press releases my company was releasing, to follow the companies my public relations company was representing, as well as to follow updates from my favorite celebrities. It wasn’t until this summer that my sister started using Twitter, and I began using the site as more of a social network like Facebook.

Today, I use Twitter for a variety of reasons: To promote articles that I write myself, to share interesting articles with others and find interesting articles from others, to read updates from my favorite celebrities, and to communicate with my friends and family. On Tuesday, in my Reinventing the News class with professor Dan Kennedy, we were taught how to use Twitter to find valuable resources for our beat topics. By searching terms such as “entpreneurs,” “entreprenuialism,” “entrepreneurship” and “startups” on Twitter as well as Twitter accounts through Listorious, I was able to find multiple contacts and Twitter feeds that were tweeting valuable information related to my focus on entrepreneurs and the businesses they create.

Here are 10 of the many great Twitter feeds I found that I hope will help provide me with valuable resources for future use in this blog:

@StartupWeekend: Hosting the tag line, “Create Communities and Companies in a Weekend,” Startup Weekend’s Twitterfeed tweets about the actual event of Startup Weekend, which is a 54-hour event focusing on startup companies that provides networking, resources and incentives for individuals, helping them to go from the idea stage to the launch stage. However, the feed also includes updates about different startup companies that have stemmed from Startup Weekend.

@VC20 (Venture Capital 2.0): This Twitter feed represents the Grow Venture Community, the first crowdfunding platform for seed funding startups. Here’s an interesting Tweet from their feed: “What Is The Value Of An Idea? #startups,#vc#crowdfunding

@IncMagazine: Inc Magazine’s tag line reads, “The magazine for entrepreneurs. Broadcasting live from New York City.” I’m surprised this didn’t come up at #1 when I searched “Entrepreneur” on Twitter! The feed links to articles within the magazine’s website, however it also links to outside sources and polls its readers, provoking participation.

@33needs: 33needs, which is a Twitterfeed for a social investing project, came up on my search because it tweeted, “What exactly is a Social Entrepreneur?” The feed includes a lot of information and links to articles relevant to social entrepreneurship, for those “green” entrepreneurs. It also encourages others to invest, invest, invest!

@BusinessCait: Caitlyn of @BusinessCait is a self-proclaimed “startup addict.” Her feed links to videos, statistics, articles, polls and other outsides sources related to entrepreneurship, venture capitals and branding. She encourages others to get out there and make their ideas become reality, and enjoys hearing about what other people are doing with their ideas. Find out more about Caitlyn by reading her blog.

@MyPROStart: “Here to assist entrepreneurs get a head start in creating their own life by design,” reads the Twitterfeed of MyProStart, the Twitter account of PRO, a virtual community of entrepreneurs looking for alternative ways to accomplish their entrepreneurial goals. Tweets include links to articles, such as the top 50 startups in Washington state, and commentary about what is going on within the world of startups.

@CEOWannaBe: “Should Your Startup Offer Virtual Internships?” is a question Tweeted by CEOWannaBe, who describes him/herself as a successful executive in a Fortune 500 company that is looking to make it to the top of leadership–through entrepreneurship and creative business. The feed features advice and commentary about the world of entrepreneurship, along with the account holder’s individual experience in their quest to make it to the top.

@eRoundTable: Entrepreneurs Roundtable is a non-profit global organization that helps entrepreneurs succeed, and eRoundTable is their Twitter account. The feed includes information about networking events, small business tips and posts information about their Accelerator Program, which helps entrepreneurs succeed in their business.

@youTern: YouTern helps connect emerging talent (aka, the entrepreneur) with startup companies, non-profits focusing on social change, and human resources through internships. The Twitter feed posts information about available internships for individuals looking for the right opportunity.

@Danielbru: Daniel Brusilovsky is an 18-year-old entrepreneur. He is the founder of Teens in Tech Labs, a company that focuses on helping connect and provide entrepreneurs to resources and tools. Already an accomplished young adult, Brusilovsky tweets about his success as an entrepreneur as well as about his company and new happenings in the technology world.

Without Twitter, I probably would not have come across any of these people or organizations except for the two I was already aware of (Inc Magazine and Venture Capital 2.0), proving the value of Twitter accounts and how they can help spread and share information. I think by continuing to follow these accounts, I will be provided with not only more information, but more diverse information that is easily accessible.

You can keep yourself up-to-date with what I’m doing by visiting my Twitter account!