Category Archive for ‘Advice’

22 essential SaaS tools to bootstrap your internet startup

  When you start up a SaaS company without any outside investment, you learn that it hurts to spend your own money. You also learn to be super frugal with it and to make smart choices when it comes to the tools and services you use. Over the 7 years of growing Trackur, I’ve found 22 tools that I use to make things run smoothly. Some are free, many are super cheap, and those that do have a higher price tag end up saving a lot of personnel time. I’ve decided that this might be a list that startups might

Will Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella learn an important lesson about karma?

It had been a while (5 minutes) since the Twitterverse had conducted a cyber fauxtest, so Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella provided more than enough fodder when he ineptly tried to tell women that they should not ask for a raise, but instead trust in karma: “It’s not really about asking for a raise, but knowing and having faith that the system will give you the right raise,” said Nadella to Maria Klawe, who is president of Harvey Mudd College and also a member of Microsoft’s board, in an onstage interview. “That might be one of the initial ‘super powers,’ that quite

The 8 best Twitter tactics for businesses and the important one @Motorola ignored

I don’t always complain about a business, but when I do, I like to use an infographic from which everyone can benefit. After preordering the new Motorola Hint on the first day available, I was told I would receive my order by October 3rd. When that date came and went without even a shipping notice, I reached out to Motorola on Twitter: @Motorola my Hint order is supposed to arrive tomorrow, but hasn’t even shipped yet. What’s the latest? Thanks! — Andy Beal (@AndyBeal) October 2, 2014 And again: @MotorolaSupport maybe you can explain why my Hint was supposed to

A genius tactic to neutralize negative Yelp reviews?

After reading my advice on how to guarantee a 1-star online reputation, QuestionPro’s James Worth asked me what I thought about Botto Bistro’s recent Yelp campaign. In case you’re not familiar with the story, Botto Bistro set out to become the worst reviewed restaurant on Yelp. Apparently tired of being held hostage by 1-star reviews, the California bistro launched a campaign to get as many 1-star reviews as possible, by offering a 25% discount in return. Crazy? Genius! How do you negate the trustworthiness of a 1-star review? You surround it with hundreds of other 1-star reviews–all as ridiculous as

Five ways to ensure a 1-star reputation

Are you tired of having a 5-star online review profile? Want to spice things up a bit, the next time a customer has a complaint? These five tactics are a foolproof strategy for ensuring your online review rating bottoms out to 1-star! 1. Ignore your customer Most customers complain online because they felt as though you didn’t care about their experience. Perhaps a staff member was apathetic, an email unanswered, or no one bothered to reply to their tweet. When a customer determines that you’re not interested in resolving their complaint they become motivated by revengeful altruism. They want to

Be a good sport, don’t question the integrity of others without concrete evidence

When you’re the underdog in a close college football game, you need all the momentum you can get. So, when Dave Doeren’s NC State Wolfpack found itself with the momentum it needed to take on the #1 ranked Seminoles, the last thing it wanted was something that would slow down the game. Unfortunately for the Wolfpack, FSU had two players go down with injuries during critical offensive drives. As a fan in attendance, I can see why Doeren and around 50,000 biased onlookers would suspect the players of faking their injuries. But, when all you have is suspicion, you can’t use

Five handy tips for finishing off 2014 with your reputation in tact

Every year has its fair share of notable reputation disasters, and 2014 has been no different.  With NFL scandals coming out of the woodwork just as the pre-election political drama is heating up on those bendy new iPhones, it seems like no one is immune to reputation damage this year.  Aside from hoping that your drama is overshadowed by yet another athlete/politician/celeb behaving badly or a much awaited tech release gone awry, what can you do to keep your nose clean throughout the remainder of 2014?  We’ve compiled a handy list of tips and tricks to help you get through

If you fine a customer for a negative review, California will fine you $10,000 in return!

In my latest book, Repped, I outline a number of different ways to handle negative reviews about your business. Fining the customer is not one of them. You’d think that would be a no-brainer, but that hasn’t stopped some companies from inserting language that essential results in a “fine” for any negative reviews posted online. Well, under a new law, just signed by California governor Jerry Brown, consumers are now protected from so-called non-disparagement clauses: This bill would prohibit a contract or proposed contract for the sale or lease of consumer goods or services from including a provision waiving the consumer’s

Malaysia Air takes heat for poorly named promo

In a desperate effort to get back on top after two major tragedies in several months, Malaysia Airlines launched a large, and very inappropriately named, contest.  On Monday, the “My Ultimate Bucket List” contest was announced.  The company promptly attempted to erase all evidence of the contest just two days later following public outrage.  A statement from the airline said that the contest in Australia and New Zealand was “found to be inappropriate at this point of time,” and “The airline appreciates and respects the sentiments of the public and in no way did it intend to offend any parties.” People were less

Court rules there’s no extortion at Yelp…that can be proven

  You hear this complaint a lot in reputation management circles… Mercurio, the owner of an auto-body shop called Wheel Techniques, said that Yelp posted “false reviews” to get him to advertise, and Chan, a dentist, claimed that “Yelp removed nine 5-star reviews” from her page after she refused to advertise, the ruling states. After Chan gave in and signed an advertising contract with Yelp, her overall rating increased to four stars and several five-stars reviews were re-posted, she said. After losing their original class action law suit–claiming Yelp’s extortion–the case was this week similarly dismissed by an appeal court. Of