036 - Casey Schorr: Co-founder of Printfection talks about the challenges of building a blue ocean company

Casey Schorr is the Co-founder of Printfection which helps businesses market themselves with promotional merchandise. Printfection's swag management platform handles the custom printing and inventory management of promotional products. It also allows for the usage of these products through a variety of online marketing campaigns.

In this interview, Casey discusses how he first decided he wanted to start a business and then came up with an idea.

Topics Discussed

  • Starting a business in college
  • Creating a blue ocean business 
  • Pivoting your business  
  • The importance of great customer service and word of mouth

Best Business Advice

"It's all about the people and the team."

Contact Information

Email: casey@printfection.com

Website: http://www.printfection.com/

035 - John Basso: Founder and CIO of Amadeus Consulting talks about the building a business around your passion

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John Basso is the Founder and CIO of Amadeus Consulting which is a full-scale creative technology solutions company that specializes in everything from software application development to mobile app development, 24/7 software maintenance and much more. John has already written a book entitled, "Micro-Corps: Rise of the Idea Architects (A New Generation of Entrepreneurs)." 

In this interview, John discusses working with billion dollar companies, the rise of the micro-corporation, making your business better rather than just bigger, and creating a minimum viable product. 

Topics Discussed

  • Creating a business around your passions
  • The downside of venture capital
  • Entering the app world 
  • Questions to ask a development company before working with them

Best Business Advice

"Build businesses around areas that you're passionate about."

Contact Information

Email: info@amadeusconsulting.com

Website: http://www.amadeusconsulting.com/

034 - Brian Watson: Founder and CEO of Northstar Commercial Partners and Opportunity Coalition talks about providing others with value

Brian Watson is the founder and CEO of Northstar Commercial Partners and Opportunity Coalition. Northstar Commercial Partners primarily purchases vacant properties, cleans them up, and then leases them. The Opportunity Coalition is a nonprofit organization specifically designed to promote and facilitate a business friendly environment that encourages free enterprise, entrepreneurship, and collaboration. 

In this interview, Brian discusses growing up in an entrepreneurial family, starting multiple companies, quitting his job to start his first business, and investing in other people.  

Topics Discussed

  • Coming out on top after a down economy
  • Providing others with value for the long-term
  • Making the most of your time
  • Why stress can be a good thing

Best Business Advice

"Focus on how you can add value to the person across the table..."

Contact Information 

Email: brian@northstarcp.com

Phone: 303-893-9500

Website:  http://www.northstarcp.com/

033 - Ryan Angilly: Co-founder of Ramen talks about building a business around helping other entrepreneurs succeed

Ryan Angilly is the co-founder of Ramen, a SaaS company, which fosters collaboration between startups and customers. Ramen helps the two groups work together on their projects. 

In this interview, Ryan discusses his entrepreneurial journey and past entrepreneurial ventures, how entrepreneurship nearly ruined his most important relationships, how he swore off start-ups but still ended up co-founding another company, and why he chose to launch another company. He also talks about how entrepreneurs can use Ramen to validate an idea and really zero in on the things they should be working on.

Topics Discussed

  • Getting the entrepreneurial itch
  • Leaving a steady job to pursue entrepreneurial ventures
  • Navigating the entrepreneurial rollercoaster and bouncing back from failures
  • Working with mentors 

Favorite Resource

Growth Hackers 

Best Business Advice

"Don’t be afraid to put a really high price tag on stuff. You can always give discounts and come down, but you can never go back up. And you’d be surprised at how many times people will probably be willing to pay what you ask because it is valuable."

Contact Information 

Email: ryan@ramen.is 

Website: https://ramen.is/ 

032 - Eric Graham: Marketing Director for Automated Marketing Group discusses low-cost ways for entrepreneurs to market themselves.

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Eric Graham started his career in the food and beverage industry where he worked for several large corporations. After getting laid off when the economy declined, Eric started an e-commerce business where he sold outdoor gear and other outdoor supplies. He quickly learned that having a website doesn't necessarily translate into sales. After utilizing countless free marketing resources, Eric gained a strong understanding of digital marketing and eventually sold his business. Now, Eric is the Marketing Director for Automated Marketing Group

Topics Discussed

  • Choosing the correct social media platform for your business 
  • Increasing your Google search rankings
  • 3 social media platforms that every small business should consider
  • Mistakes people make when using social media 

Favorite Resource

Search Engine Watch and MOZ

Contact Information

Email: eric.graham@longtermfix.com

Website: Automated Marketing Group

031 - Media Shakiba and Kerianne Leffew of Innovation Pavilion discuss available resources for Colorado Entrepreneurs

Media Shakiba is the Center Manager for the Innovation Pavilion and Kerianne Leffew is the Director of Operations.

In this interview, Media and Kerianne discuss how the Innovation Pavilion supports the Colorado entrepreneur through training, networking events, mentorship programs, and much more. 

Topics Discussed

  • Developing entrepreneurial skills
  • Connecting with mentors 
  • Available resources for entrepreneurs
  • Bringing an idea to fruition

Contact Information

Email: info@innovationpavilion.com

Website: http://innovationpavilion.com

030 - Jason Eckenroth: Founder and CEO of ShipCompliant talks about finding your first customer

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Jason Eckenroth is the Founder and CEO of ShipCompliant which is an industry leading SaaS company for the alcoholic beverage industry. ShipCompliant takes away the hassle and paperwork and allows wineries and breweries to focus on making wine, getting it to their customers, and making their customers happy.

Topics Discussed

  • Finding a niche in business
  • Forming strategic partnerships
  • Gaining market share 
  • Seeking out a mentor 

Favorite Resource

Tripit

Best Business Advice

"Every time you launch a product, you've got to treat it like it's the only thing that you do; that you're going to live and die based off the success of this product and service."

Contact Information

Email: jason@shipcompliant.com

Website: http://www.shipcompliant.com/

029 - Jason Lewis: Co-founder and CEO of Ecospace Commercial talks about selecting office space

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Jason Lewis is the Co-founder and CEO of Ecospace Commercial. Ecospace Commercial helps office tenants make smart office leasing decisions. This includes office renewals, relocations, and expansions in the Denver and Boulder submarket. 

Topics Discussed

  • Being a serial entrepreneur
  • Focusing your effort 
  • Understanding the needs of the customer
  • Caring more than the competition

Best Business Advice

"Focus and hustle."

Contact Information

Website: http://ecospacecommercial.com/

028 - Timmy Wozniak: Co-founder and CEO of FreshJets stresses the importance of having a technical co-founder

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Timmy Wozniak is the Co-founder and CEO of FreshJets. The FreshJets App connects you with a private jet at the tap of a button. The FreshJets software system also allows charter operators and corporate travel departments to take advantage of empty legs.

Topics Discussed

  • Starting and running a business at an early age
  • Entering new markets
  • Outsourcing technical work
  • Forming strategic partnerships

Favorite Resource

Refresh

Best Business Advice

"Focus on your customers."

Contact Information

Email: timmy@freshjets.com

Website: https://freshjets.com/

027 - Matt Talbot: Co-founder and CEO of GoSpotCheck talks about the importance of creating a moat for your business

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Matt Talbot is the Co-founder and CEO of GoSpotCheck. GoSpotCheck provides a SaaS platform for businesses to rapidly share field data allowing for better information on their operations of their locations. 

Topics Discussed

  • Deciding when to leave your corporate job
  • Completely changing your business model
  • Raising Venture Capital while still working on the business
  • Building a moat to gain competitive advantage 

Favorite Resource

Day One

Best Business Advice

"Everyday build your moat. Do something others aren't and build a competitive moat around that."

Contact Information

Email: matt@gospotcheck.com

Website: http://www.gospotcheck.com/

 

026 - Bob Witham: Co-founder and CEO of Two Rivers Winery talks about entering into a new venture with no industry experience

Bob Witham is the Co-founder and CEO of Two Rivers Winery, which is located in Grand Junction, Colorado.

In this interview, Bob discusses entering a new industry with limited experience, business planning, working with banks, and following through. 

Topics Discussed

  • Changing your original business idea
  • Entering an unfamiliar industry with limited knowledge
  • Business planning and working with banks
  • Adapting to conditions outside of your control

Best Business Advice

“When you’re in any kind of a business, you need to go out there and you need to take risks. And those risks need to be quantifiable but; nonetheless, they have to be risks and you have to be willing to step out there and do those.“

Contact Information

Website: http://www.tworiverswinery.com/

025 - Jeremy Ostermiller: Founder and CEO of Altitude Digital explains the importance of culture in a business

Jeremy is the founder and CEO of Altitude Digital, a full-service ad rep firm that works with publishers to navigate online advertising while maximizing online revenue. Altitude digital offers publishers competitive cost per impression rates for display and video content. 

In this interview, Jeremy discusses how to start a business with limited capital, how to outsource work and build a team, the importance of culture, and preparing to receive venture capital. 

Topics Discussed

  • Making the most of your funds
  • Outsourcing work
  • Creating a lasting culture
  • Preparing to receive venture capital 

Favorite Resource

DOMO

Best Business Advice

"Treat your business like a business and run it as legitimately as you can."

Contact Information

Email: jeremy@altitudedigital.com

Website: http://www.altitudedigital.com/

024 - Molly Berger: Executive Director at TiE Rockies shares helpful resources for Colorado entrepreneurs

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Molly Berger is the Executive Director at TiE Rockies, which is the Colorado chapter of TiE Global, the largest entrepreneur's network in the world.

In this interview, Molly discusses how TiE Rockies supports the Colorado entrepreneur through networking events, business development events, mentorship programs, retreats and much more. 

Topics Discussed

  • Connecting with mentors
  • Networking 
  • Overcoming entrepreneurial challenges
  • Available resources for entrepreneurs

Contact Information

Email: molly.berger@rockies.tie.org

Website: http://www.rockies.tie.org

023 - Sylvia Bernstein: Co-founder and President of The Aquaponic Source explains how to create new market space

Sylvia Bernstein is a leader in the field of aquaponics. She is the Co-founder and President of The Aquaponic Source, which is a Colorado-based company with a mission to empower people to grow their own fish and vegetables in their homes and school. Sylvia is a best selling author on the subject of aquaponics and is at the forefront of the aquaponics industry through her educational teachings and national aquaponic festivals. 

 

Topics Discussed

  • Identifying blue oceans and entering new markets
  • Educating your audience
  • Hiring passionate employees
  • Doing work you love

Favorite Resource

Evernote

Best Business Advice

  1. Go make something happen
  2. Do work you're proud of
  3. Treat people with respect
  4. Make big promises and keep them
  5. Ship it out the door

Contact Information

Email: sylvia@theaquaponicsource.com

Website: http://theaquaponicsource.com/

022 - Eric Hubbell: Founder and CEO of MyHub shares tips on how to prepare for your entrepreneurial journey

Eric Hubbell is the founder and CEO of MyHub, which is a mobile tech company that created a new and smarter solution for social planning. The MyHub app allows you to plan upcoming activities and share them with your friends. 

In this interview Eric shares tips on preparing for the entrepreneurial journey through preparation, validation, user testing, and good design. 

Topics Discussed

  • Recognizing a "lightbulb" moment
  • Validating a business idea
  • Bootstrapping your company
  • How to put together a team 

Favorite Resource

Fancy

Best Business Advice

"Bootstrap!"

Contact Information

Email: eric@myhubapp.com

Website: http://myhubapp.com/

 

021 - Chris Franks: Serial Entrepreneur Drops Some Value Bombs for Your Benefit

Chris is a serial entrepreneur and the founder of Real Good Technologies and MadSmarts.  Recently he took a position with a startup, Secure Ideas. Chris is one of the co-organizers behind the Denver Founders Network Meetup group, he was part of the initial group of people who put Denver startup week together and basically he’s been around the Denver tech and startup scene for a while and has an amazing amount of knowledge about starting businesses (both mistakes and successes). In this interview Chris shares some awesome entrepreneurial tips for everyone to learn from.

Topics Discussed

  • The wrong reason to start a business
  • The history of the Colorado tech scene
  • How to get involved
  • Finding co-founders

Favorite Resource

Built In Colorado

Best Business Advice

"If it ain't broke, break it and fix it"

Contact Information

Email: cefranks@gmail.com

Website: www.about.me/cefranks

Founders Network

020 - Amber Ludwig: Founder of NGNG, Enterprises lives by the motto No Guts No Glory!

Amber Ludwig is a well-known online business development expert and the founder of NGNG Enterprises. Amber helps online entrepreneurs get results through creating websites, social media branding and online business coaching. She has supported well over 1000 entrepreneurs including more than 500 authors on six continents.

Topics Discussed

  • Overcoming the fear of speaking
  • Creating a service menu and determining pricing
  • Finding your first client
  • Building a team
  • Trusting your gut!

Favorite Resource

Active Inbox

Best Business Advice

"Just do it anyway"

"No Guts No Glory"

Contact Information

Website: www.amberludwig.com 

019 - David Cockrel: Co-founder and CEO of Spex.it tackles a niche market

David Cockrel is the co-founder and CEO of Spex.it, which develops "Smart Inspection Software" for property & casualty insurance companies. 

Topics Discussed

  • Finding a co-founder and leaving a secure job
  • Validating an idea and determining a price
  • Costs to build an app
  • Creating the Wikipedia of building materials

Favorite Resource

Invision app

Best Business Advice

"You're not alone - look for those who have been in your situation and succeeded and those who failed and learn from both"

Contact Information

Email: david@spex.it 

Wesbsite: http://www.spex.it/ 

018 - Doug Simons: President of Enstrom Candies explains how a family business can be successfully passed on to the next generation

Doug is the president of Enstrom Candies, which is a candy company that I’m sure most have heard of located in Grand Junction, Colorado and known for its addicting almond toffee. 

Topics Discussed

  • History of Enstrom Candies
  • Taking over a family business
  • Passing on a family business to the next generation

Contact Information

Website: www.enstrom.com/

017 - Craig Clark: Co-founder of Pillows.com shares valuable Ecommerce tips

Craig is the co-founder of Pillows.com, a company that (as you may have guessed) sells pillows and other bedding products. But, these aren’t the typical products you can buy at Bed Bath and Beyond; Pillows.com only carries bedding products found in luxury hotels and resorts that are typically only available to businesses that buy in large wholesale quantities.

Topics Discussed

  • Buying domain names
  • SEO tips
  • Picking a niche to beat amazon.com 
  • Driving traffic to your website
  • Sales funnel tips

Favorite Resource

Google Analytics

Crazy Egg (website heat mapping)

Contact Information for Craig

Email: craig@pillows.com 

Website: www.pillows.com