$31,000 in Prizes at BYU Student Entrepreneur of the Year Competition

Kevin Willeitner, one of my BYU Internet Marketing students asked me to blog this:

Student entrepreneurs now have their change to win a little money to put into their business. The Collegiate Entrepreneurs\’ Organization of BYU is now accepting applications for the 2006 Student Entrepreneur of the Year. So far, they are planning to give out a total of $31,000 to the winners with $12,500 going to first place. Contestant get prizes all the way down to 12th place, so the chances of winning something are quite good. Last years winner was Jayson Edwards of J-Dawg\’s (a small hot dog shack on the edge of the BYU campus.)

Here is the official BYU Student Entrepreneur of the Year website.

Multiple topics

TOPIC 1.
Marty Fahncke, an outstanding direct-response marketer, finally convinced me to join with him as he launches www.learnfrompaulallen.com. I guess he really couldn\’t have done it without me. Our first conference call, where I will answer questions from listeners about internet marketing and other entrepreneurial topics, will be held on Thursday, September 7th at 1 pm MST. This is a free conference call, so register now for one of the limited spaces.

May I help you grow your business with powerful internet marketing tactics?

Yes, this is an advertisement.

It\’s an invitation for you to bring your startup company to the new Provo Labs Academy, where you will learn dozens of important internet marketing tactics that can help you find more success for your business.

In September, a new office building will open in Provo with space for dozens of small startup companies. It is adjacent to BYU on Ninth East, across from the Creamery on Ninth. If you like the BYU Dairy chocolate milk (best tasting in the world) you will love moving your small business into our new space.

Don\’t overlook free products and services online

Blake Snow has a nice post about 20 free products and services that he uses online. He lists several that I have not used before. I\’ll need to try them out so I can add them to my recommendations for entrepreneurs list, and make sure they get added to StrategyTree.com, my wiki for entrepreneurs.

Google Spreadsheets

I\’m encouraging every Provo Labs portfolio company to set up a shareable Google spreadsheet to keep track of daily web statistics. One of the keys to success in an online company is to look at very simple web stats every day to find opportunities and problems. For example, someone needs to look every day at the top referrers to your web site and the top search terms that are bringing you visitors. Every domain that sends you traffic becomes an important part of your company\’s ecosystem. These partners need to be watched, tended, encouraged, and rewarded.

The Only Sustainable Edge

It\’s one thing to learn about a powerful strategy or management technique that works and it\’s another thing entirely to actually implement it.

One of the best books I\’ve read in years is The Only Sustainable Edge. It suggests that trying to do everything inhouse won\’t work anymore. That to be competitive you not only need to outsource everything that isn\’t your primary focus, but you also need to outsource to the firms whose capacities are increasing faster than others, and to partner with firms on the edge of your business.

Getting Offline PR

I\’ve been doing internet marketing so long that sometimes I forget about all the pre-internet marketing possibilities that exist to help companies grow. I started a Library Science Masters Degree at BYU before dropping out to run Infobases. I used to have dozens of extremely valuable reference books in the BYU library that helped me with direct marketing, public relations, and media planning/advertising. So I\’ve been digging in my 1990s knowledge base to see what sources I can draw from now to help promote a new product.

Marketing Training with RoMay

My sister is one smart cookie. She has helped me with data prep projects since the early 90s and has built web sites for me and done internet marketing for me. When I need help, I can turn to her. One site she built for 10x Marketing generated $7,000 in revenue just a couple months after it was built–and with no extra maintenance.

So now RoMay is doing marketing training classes, emphasizing internet marketing. She was one of my top students in my BYU Internet Marketing class last fall. (I think she got 100% on almost evey quiz.) She is outstanding.

Entrepreneur Brainstorm Lunch

13 impressive entrepreneurs showed up for our Provo Labs Entrepreneur Brainstorm Lunch today. It was well worth it. Some of the entrepreneurs were seeking funding and needed ideas about who to talk to. Several good suggestions were made. Another entrepreneur with a good retail business idea is looking to recruit some management. A software company that just received significant funding from NSF needs a product manager.

50 Keys to a Successful Online Business

What is the difference between failure and success in a startup company? Why do some companies develop a good product or service and use effective sales and marketing strategies to help customers and to generate revenue and profits and to grow a successful company while other companies fail somewhere along with way?

I think it has to do with the company \”blueprint\” that is in the mind of the founder or the management team.

A complete business blueprint has to address the design of every part of a business in order for a successful company to emerge.