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A Few More Startup Marketing Terms

July 21, 2011

We like to bring you new terms used in startup marketing from time to time.  You know, to keep you fresh.  Here are three new ones that we use all the time now:

Vision juice– With a nod to President George Bush, #41, and his quip about needing “the vision thing” we like to hear startup founders proselytizing about their product in the context of broad, global market trends and customer needs.  But, when a technical founder has built the latest, greatest widget, it’s easy for him to get bogged down in the details (that was known as “speeds and feeds” back in the day.)  Whenever a technical co-founder gets mired in the details of their own product, we prod him to pay attention to the broader market context and inject some “vision juice” into his commentary.

Scrum We know all about scrums when it comes to software startups.  A scrum is the iterative, driven project management approach that brings a team together on a daily basis to nimbly manage to an urgent deadline.  But we’re hearing “scrum” applied to marketing efforts, too, as in a scrum for a revision to a website, for example.  It’s a handy term because, just like a software development project, a scrum for a website revision involves convening a cross-functional team of stakeholders — developers, sales people, content providers and brand owners – to meet every other day to develop, revise and finalize content, design and functionality to meet an aggressive deadline.

Swotty If you consult the dictionary, “swotty” is a British term that translates as “studious” in American English.  But we use it to describe what sometimes happens when startup founders lose their way during the positioning workshop phase of our marketing engagement.  Typically, we kick off a workshop by soliciting input from the founding team to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (or SWOT).

A SWOT analysis is a rather familiar way to begin.  But when that discussion never moves from the theoretical and into the meaty realities of various weaknesses or threats, we admonish everyone “not to be so swotty.”  In other words, what’s the value of self-analysis if the founders won’t grapple with the implications of the reported gaps?  The term “swotty,” is a favorite of Crowded Ocean co-founder Lisa Busby.  Thanks, Lisa!

If you’ve got a new startup marketing term for us, please let us know. We’re all ears.

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