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Start The Startup™

250 words or less. For entrepreneurs and other smart people who don't have time to read.

Startup Success: A Venn Diagram

Startup Success Venn Diagram

Here’s a Venn Diagram with three key elements to startup success.  It’s really a three-legged stool.  When one leg is missing, the stool falls over, the startup fails.

COOL NEW PRODUCT.   Many startups think this is the only element for success, it isn’t.   But it is certainly the most important.

MONEY.   Re$ources. Enough to secure the idea legally (patent, etc.), Tier I web design, development, manufacturing, and people.

GOOD MARKETING.  One could argue that $ can buy good marketing, not necessarily.  Good marketing is a spot-on message, imagery, logo, and of course, killer PR.

If you have a GREAT IDEA, $, but insufficient marketing, I call it the “wink in the dark.”  You’re there, but people will either not find out about you or miss the point completely.   What happens when you have $ and GOOD MARKETING, but lack the GREAT IDEA?  “DOA.”  People will admire the effort, buy they won’t buy it.  The third scenario: Cool New Product, Good Marketing, no $.  Lots of energy goes into the product and execution, but entrepreneur never secures trademarks, patents, the right web development or people.  Someone bigger and better will come along and do it right, or blatantly copy the idea.

A “Home Run” occurs when $, Good Marketing and a Cool New Product are all in sync.  People will love the product, enhanced ny great marketing.  Since the entrepreneur has secured the proper people and intellectual property, @** holes won’t try to copy it as easily.

Now, go out and hit your OWN home run.




Cathy Bennett is an entrepreneur, product launch veteran, and avid coffee drinker from the San Francisco Bay Area. She graduated from UCLA with a degree in Communications and earned her MBA in Marketing from the University of Notre Dame. After 15 years in corporate marketing, Cathy launched her own startup in 2007. Despite being a small-new-online-bootstrapped company, Cathy took an aggressive, hands-on approach telling the story of her company. It was compelling enough to get the attention of the Today Show, Martha Stewart, Parents’ Magazine,, Daily Candy, and PC Magazine, amongst others. Her use of social media was featured by Facebook Corporate as a “Best Practice” for its engaging use of Facebook pages. She sold her company in 2011, joing on to leading new initiatives in product launch, PR and social media for the parent company’s New York-based operation. Before her startup, Cathy was involved with corporate product launches for large companies like Ford (U.S. Launch Manager for Jaguar and Land Rover brands), Nissan (Product Manager for Infiniti’s QX4 and I30), and spearheaded Lincoln’s audio licensing partnership with THX/Lucasfilm. Cathy started Start The Startup™ to share her best practices in product launch and PR for small startups looking to attract some high quality attention.