Startup Challenge Updates

Wins

It’s time for Startup Challenge updates. This past week, I was finally able to go live with the Kids Double Desk website.  This was a long time coming.  It isn’t perfect.  I realized that I needed to let it go. Perfect is the enemy of good in this case.  As a perfectionist  it bugs me, but at the advice of many success entrepreneurs, I let it go.  Many of today’s business articles, bloggers and podcasters recite one version or another of Voltaire’s idiom.

There are a few different nuances of this quote, but the message is clear to me.  I can make forward progress with what I have now, or I can make no progress with on the business while trying to make it perfect.

Perfect is the enemy of good.

Since I am not a webmaster, or a designer, I am probably not going to make the design and layout perfect anytime soon. But at this point the website is a working e-commerce website.  If you want to check out the website and give me some feedback in the comments, I would be grateful.  Visit http://kidsdoubledesk.com.

The website has had some minor technical challenges since going live on Friday Nov 20th.  Nothing dramatic or showstopping. But Yoast SEO plugin released version 3.03 and it caused heartburn for a lot of folks.  This came as a surprise as it has a reputation for being not only very reliable, but also every effective.  For a majority of the Yoast customers the “fix” was only a few clicks away and less than two minutes of work.  But my case was different. It was probably 8-10 hours of research between my webmaster and me.  I didn’t get excited or concerned about it. 16 years in IT (and counting) taught me not to stress about it and with enough effort, the problem would be resolved one way or another.  These things are expected.

Current Startup Challenge

At this point, some of the important things are covered. I know what my manufacturing costs are going to be.  I know what my maximum shipping costs are going to be.  I have a “warehouse and fulfillment” solution, for the first batch that comes out of kickstarter.  And I have a functional ecommerce website.  I personally tested it myself.

It is important to move forward with the business. My pressing next step is to shoot video for the kickstarter campaign.  I need better pictures too, but of utmost importance is the video. In everything I have read about crowdfunding, the video is absolutely critical to the success of a crowdfunding campaign.  “Without a video, don’t even bother.”  That’s the going advice in the crowdsourcing community.  I have written the campaign video script.  You will have to subscribe to this RSS feed so that you know when I launch the kickstarter campaign for Kids Double Desk and watch it yourself.

Other updates

I have recently learned a lot about blogging and website administration when I joined Leslie Samuel’s “Become a Blogger” club.  I have been listening to Leslie Samuel’s podcasts for about six months and when he recently offered a promotion to have inside access to some valuable blogging information, I could not turn it down. Leslie has a way of teaching that keeps the student engaged and inspired.  As a former teacher and professor, his tutorials are very helpful.  He interacts with us directly and answers our questions online. He has formed a community in which we interact with each other and help each other out. I have only been a part of it for a few weeks, and already it has been enjoyable and helpful.

I hit 500 twitter followers today. Small, but a milestone nonetheless for me.  As guy who had zero  experience with social media, this is noteable. Several months ago I realized that if I want my crowdfunding campaign to be successful, I would need a social presence.  My twitter handle for Kids Double Desk is @kidsdoubledesk.  My personal twitter handle is @ag2ward.

If you want to continue to follow me as I trod this new ground of entrepreneurship, subscribe to my RSS feed at http://mystartupchallenge.com or connect with my LinkedIn profile.  If you have suggestions or questions for me, please leave them in the comments section below.

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Regular family guy working to change his stars for his kids.

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