App Fog Genius Lessons From A Successful Entrepreneur

App Fog Business Startup Lessons from a Lucrative Entrepreneur

Lucas Carlson is a successful startup entrepreneur. When he first started however, he made a few bad choices that almost cost him big time.

Don’t Skip Business Setup Planning

At first he was just programming an idea for App Fog. He didn’t have a landing page, any bank account, brain storming ideas, or thinking about the ideal customers. Skipping key steps really put him back for years. He would program for weeks, and then finish the app idea. Then program for weeks and finish the idea. He couldn’t get people interested in the idea that was created.

Creating a Landing Page

Finally, he decided to create a landing page one night when he was too tired to sleep or even tell his wife about the programming idea. The app idea was PHP Fog. He tried putting it up on a site before that called Heroku.com. He registered the PHP Fog website and just simply wrote “it’s like Heroku for PHP”. Heroku’s site only allowed for Rudy on Rails applications so he couldn’t put the applications on that site.

Living the Dream

The next morning he woke up and had eight hundred people on his website! He didn’t market it anywhere else. All he did was put one link on Hacker News network. Also, he described the website in more depth. It turned out that the idea was a “hair on fire” idea without even the creation of the project! This gave him assurance that if the effort is put in, the results will be desired. After programming for two weeks. he just only had a prototype and the traffic went from 800 to 4,000 unique visitors per day!

Hair on Fire Problem Equals Confidence

He had identified a “hair on fire” problem. This gave him confidence to program the solution. This changed his life forever! He realized the difference between having a problem that people know they have versus the problems that people don’t know they have. PHP Fog wound up being AppFog. It raised $10 billion dollars and was later bought out.

No Marketing Expenses

He didn’t spend a dime on marketing! It wasn’t an accident. People already wanted the idea and were looking for it. He learned that he could find what people already wanted and then program an application based on what they wanted. He wasn’t taking a “shot in the dark” anymore.

Don’t be Intimidated

Creating a landing page or micro-website is very scary for most people. They don’t want to know if others like their great idea or not. There is a denial psychological part to this way of thinking. It can be self-defeating to the creation of an idea. They will think “Well I believe in the idea so much, that I don’t care what other people think about it”. This philosophy will kill a great idea. Put your “right foot first” and see what people need.

Branding – Business Identity By Design

Small Businesses and Solo Entrepreneurs need to build their brand identity just like the large companies. People are more likely to do business with you if they feel comfortable with you and feel like they already know you.

When you sneeze do you ask for a ‘Kleenex” or a tissue? Are you thirsty for a ‘Coke’ or a cola? Consumers buy these products just because they are familiar with them. When you’re a small business owner or solo entrepreneur the product/service is you. It is imperative that you build brand identity that creates familiarity of you within your ‘niche’ market. Building your identity is important because people support businesses and products that they are comfortably familiar with and avoid the unknowns.

Here are some successful strategic branding ideas.

Personal experience creates a strong bond between you and your customers. Your customer service needs to be extremely personal so it creates an viral cycle. The personal experience your customer receives will lead to ‘word of mouth’ publicity.

Create a consistent and repetitive association of you in your prospects mind. This can be achieved by using jingles in audio advertising mediums, and logos, photos, slogans and/or positioning statements in print advertising mediums, press releases, brochures and especially your business cards. Remember there is a back side to your business card and that is valuable space to be used for brand marketing. Be consistent in the look of your marketing/advertising so it brands you and your company. People will be acquainted with you based on that alone.

Get a professional web site with headers and footers that continues your business identity using the same logos, photos, slogans and/or positioning statements as you use in print.

Write articles with content that is educational and valuable for your customer. Put each article on your website and invite visits to your site through your resource box. Use your resource box to build brand identity.

Use article directories to publish your articles, with your resource box pointing back to your website, to build name recognition. This is absolutely FREE advertising and a must for branding your business and yourself. When you sign up as an author you have an opportunity to add your photo or logo in your profile. Make sure you take advantage of this opportunity for increased identity branding.

How to Brand Your Business Offline

Whether you are a business owner running most of your business offline or online it is important to brand your business offline to ensure that you reach the broadest possible market. In this article we will consider how you can brand your business offline and the tools you can use.

Business Card for Offline Business Branding
The first tool you need to consider using for offline business branding is your business card. Your business card should include all the details of your company including your website address, email, physical address and telephone numbers as well as having a slogan describing your business, your business logo and other design elements that create the impression you want to create and tell people what your business is about.

Business Stationery
Although most business communication today is being done by email and over the computer, you may still want to consider using branded business stationery for your offline business branding. These include letterheads, fax cover sheets, envelopes and any other stationery you use.

Fliers and Brochures
Fliers and brochures are another way to brand your business offline and get your message out. Tell people more about what you have to offer, why they need it and how they can go about purchasing from you and then distribute these. You should also use colourful graphics to capture people’s attention.

Car Decals
Another way you can brand your business offline is using car decals. Think about how many people see your car everyday and if you have your business name and perhaps a short slogan or website address printed on the decal then think about how this is going to impact your branding. Ensure that not only your business name but also some contact details or a website address are printed on the car decal as well.

Offline business branding is important for any business, whether it is online or offline, and can include items such as business cards, business stationery, fliers, brochures and car decals.