Tool of the week
Interesting offering from Ernst & Young, especially for folks who are not too comfortable with spreadsheets but need to forecast their business. Not free, but signing up for one month to test the benefits is fairly affordable at about 30 EUR, with discounts for longer terms.
Tools discovered recently
Makes it easy to generate a nice-looking “list of things” type of website from a Google Spreadsheet. Free.
First CRM tool in a while that I find quite interesting. It claims to pull together everything about the people you know in one place, automatically, from places like email, meetings, documents, Evernote, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Freemium or free trial and reasonable pricing at $19/user (30% discount if annual).
Upload a CSV of company names, get back a CSV where data has been added for those companies such as website, industry, location, revenue & more. 200 free credits.
This does GIF previews of videos (e.g. YouTube) that you embed on your site. Starts at $19/month.
Affordable all-in-one marketing platform for small businesses. Free while in Beta, so perhaps a good deal for some bootstrappers!
A developers’ toolkit for building real-time chat & messaging. They take care of the infrastructure. $50/month.
Articles for this week
An essay by Chris Dixon on why decentralization will win in the end. Personally, I think the mainframe-like Internet of today is a very powerful paradigm and has a lot of pragmatic benefits, but maybe now with the advent of the block chain and other stuff, it’s time for a paradigm shift. Chris makes the case. Lots of thought-provoking stuff here.
Why a crowded market can be a good thing, and how to use insights gained from your competition to help your company.
If you’re ramping up to Series A, or probably even if you just closed your Seed round, this is a good checklist for what investors look for.
Lots of actionable advice here.
That’s it for this issue
One of the PaaS bits that my startup relies on went a bit wonky today, and it’s not the first time for this particular PaaS. It only affected a couple of users but there’s been enough instability that we’re now working to make things more stable by removing the dependency. With so many ready-made services now available, it’s great to be able to build fast by relying on them, but it sucks when they don’t quite live up to your required reliability. Where are you on the build vs. buy spectrum?
Thanks for reading! Until next time 🤓
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