A Look Inside A Next Generation Startup Accelerator S11 Ep28

This weeks show takes a look at Boomtown – a next generation startup accelerator that has greatly improved the accelerator model. Boomtown startups currently enjoy a 96% survival rate and 78% of them are generating revenues.

Boomtown Startup Accelerator

Guest: Toby Krout of Boomtown

Toby Krout is an entrepreneur, investor, and startup coach. He co-founded Boomtown, a startup accelerator in Boulder, Colorado in 2013 where he currently serves as the Executive Director. Boomtown’s mission is to understand and continuously improve the modern accelerator model for the benefit of entrepreneurs. His startups currently enjoy a 96% survival rate and 78% of them are generating revenues.

You can find more info at boomtownboulder.com

Guest: Aiden Chopra of Bitsbox

Bitsbox is new way to teach kids how to program computers. The Bitsbox system has two halves: First, a website where kids as young as six can program apps that run on real phones and tablets. Second, a monthly subscription box that arrives in the mail. Each month’s box contains dozens of programming projects to keep kids engaged.

The management team consists of Scott Lininger as CEO and Aidan Chopra as chief product officer. They worked together for eight years at SketchUp, Google and Trimble Navigation.

You can find more information at bitsbox.com

Guest: Aquiles La Grave of Visibl

Visibl believes in a world where the size of your idea matters more than the size of your budget. They democratize video advertising by giving users large and small the same access and reach that giant advertisers have online. But we do it without needing million dollar budgets or advanced math degrees.

Get more info at getvisibl.com

Killer Question/Brain Hack

What will future customers’ buying criteria be?

A big part of my business is being aware of, and responding to, the life cycles of my industry and my customers. Some of these are easy to see; you only need a cursory understanding of the effect of OPEC on gas prices in the early ’70s to understand why cars became more fuel efficient in that decade. Other reasons are harder to see. Some criteria can be “faddish,” based on things such as color or brand. Others are based on external influences. For years the cell-phone industry fought to offer the smallest, thinnest possible phone. That’s what customers wanted. Now those same customers are prioritizing access to the web over the size of the phone. This has reversed what was seen as a key and unshakable evolution trend toward smaller phones. Now customers want larger phones with bigger screens. Sometimes trends can be reversed by something completely outside your control. Something that changes the buying decision. What will these same consumers want as they get older? Will full web access and streaming music and video be a priority, or will their needs change as their eyesight and hearing fade?

Remember the cycle part of “life cycle.” You may lose the connection with your customers at certain stages of their lives but regain it later. It’s like the young man who buys a sports car when he gets out of college, trades it in for a minivan when he marries and has kids, and finally reverts back to sports car as an empty nester. Don’t assume that a customer is lost forever just because they’ve shifted their allegiances for the time being. If you can maintain some kind of link during the years they are not using your product, you still have a good shot at winning them back again when their needs and your services match up better.

Sparking Points

  • What are the ways your future customers’ lives are changing?
  • How will that influence what they buy?
  • What will they abandon and no longer purchase as their lives change?

To get connected, text the word INNOVATE to 33-444. If outside the US, send an email to innovate@killerinnovations.com

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