Saturday, June 23, 2007

How To Get Aquired By Google

The Zenter.com guys explain how they did it. About 6 months back Crosby and Walker arrived at Mountain View, rented a small apartment, and started coding Zenter, and was acquired by google. * Don't focus on getting acquired. That's like being a single woman who desperately wants to get married. Of course you want it to happen, but 99% of the time if you purposely try to get acquired (or married), it won't. "Stick to your knitting," says Paul Graham, a founding partner of Y Combinator, the startup factory that funded Zenter. "The way to get acquired really fast is to not focus on it. If people get the impression that you want to get bought, you won't." * Instead, focus on the user. This is possibly the single most important thing for entrepreneurs to remember. "Every startup that dies fails to do this," Graham says. "A lot of startups focus on their competitors or lawsuits, but what really kills startups is if users think it's boring. It's a much quieter and dangerous reason, but if users don't care about your product, that will just kill a company." * Ignoring limitations lets you tackle problems from a different angle. It's not enough to just build an existing offline product (ie. Microsoft Word or PowerPoint) and port it onto the web. Zenter looked at how they could build a slideshow application that really takes advantage of the Internet, like adding community slideshows, delivering presentations online in real-time and dragging and dropping content from the web into a presentation. * Don't be afraid to tackle the giants. Big companies like eBay (EBAY) and Microsoft (MSFT) may have more manpower and financial resources, but they also have disadvantages. A company like Zenter doesn't care about hurting Windows. All they want to do is make the best application." * Pay attention to the details. When your product is 80% done, that means you have another 80% to go. "To get something pretty close is easy, but you need to concentration on the little things. * Have a really understanding spouse. Crosby's wife was four months preggers when he left to join the Y Combinator startup school in Mountain View. "She was extremely patient through the whole process.



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