"Do Pop Ups Actually Work?" And Other Start-Up Tales

For the past 10 years I have been obsessed with learning everything that I can about starting businesses and, more importantly, getting people to care about a business, service or product. It's one thing to have a great idea - but that's where it usually stops. At the "great idea" phase. And why is that? Well, navigating the uncharted waters of starting a business can be scary and intimidating. And when we don't know where to start, we end up going to the good ol' Google machine and typing in something like "how do I start a business?". Hundreds of websites will pop up, full of promises of foolproof step-by-step instructions on how to start a business, which is great - to a point. Where the tipping point occurs is when we default to the basic "How to Start A Business For Dummies" checklist that everyone else follows, without stopping to think "does this make sense?". For many new business owners, the illusion that there is a clearly defined path that one can follow to the pot-o-gold (otherwise known as "success") is enormously tantalizing. It's why there are so many businesses that have been created for the sole purpose of selling you information that will make you feel more confident about starting a business. Many (not all) of these companies have essentially found a way to capitalize off of your fears, and operate under the assumption that you won't do your own homework. "Learn all about Facebook marketing in 5 easy steps!", "Increase traffic to your website by 100% by following this simple rule!", "10 full-proof ways to increase customer retention"  - sounds amazing, right? Well, you know what they say...if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. That is not to say that there isn't a lot of valuable information out there, but it's important to take it all with a grain of salt, and to learn to separate the valuable information from the noise. And boy, is there noise. 

My primary goal with this blog is two-fold:

1.) I want to share valuable and digestible information about starting a business, branding, and marketing

2.) I want to encourage people to ask, "does this make sense"? or, "Okay, but why?", instead of just doing something because it's on a checklist, or because it's what everyone else is doing. 

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I'll be taking a look at commonplace business/marketing/branding practices (like - as the title of this blog post implies - putting a pop-up on a website) and dissecting whether or not those practices are actually effective. I may sprinkle my opinion here and there, but I'm much more interested in presenting both sides of the argument, and letting you (the entrepreneur) decide for yourself. Because, ultimately, you don't need one more business blog that tells you what to do - you need a resource that empowers you to make decisions that are right for you, and your business. 

Let's get to work.

C