In 2017, distrust has gone viral. Companies are blowing up on social media and trust is at an all-time low. This presentation looks at the top reasons why your customers don’t trust you. Learn ways to build trust into your product and improve your customer experience.
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The North Coast is a new destination for many travel geeks. With annual conferences like Content Marketing World every September, Cleveland is quickly becoming a surprisingly hip weekend experience. Just remember to keep your Chef Curry shirts at home.
Much like San Francisco, the best bars, restaurants and shops are tucked away in neighborhoods. So I asked Cleveland Hipster in Residence (my brother) for his go-to’s.
Where to Wifi
When you’re in a city like Cleveland, it’s easy to get sucked into a Starbucks. Avoid the downtown area and find a local roaster instead.
The Loop – local art, vinyls and a quiet upstairs (Tremont)
Phoenix Coffee Bar – rooftop, record player and a nitro toddy (Ohio City)
Passenger’s Cafe – local beans, bagels and breads.
Check out the chalk bored and disloyalty card. Trey (the coffee guy) was previously at Micro Roaster of the Year Award winning Gimme! Coffee in New York City. Mark (the hostel guy) has traveled to over 70 countries and stayed in ~100 hostels.
Together, they’re cool AF.
Where to stay
The Kimpton Schofield Hotel – newest hotel in Cleveland (opened 2016)
Located in a circa 1902 landmark building, the Kimpton is a 7-minute walk from Playhouse Square and less than a mile from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
The hotel has a retro-chic feel with midcentury design and comic books scattered throughout the hotel.
Cleveland is behind on boutique hotels compared to cities like Pittsburgh with Ace Hotel and Hotel Monaco. For a local experience, Airbnb is best.
Ohio City and Tremont are both walkable neighborhoods with plenty of local cafes, art galleries and farmer’s markets.
Iron Chef Michael Symon rents out his personal home in Tremont from $90 per night.
A few locals to follow
The best way to avoid tourist traps in Cleveland is to connect with a few locals.
@WhyCle – neighborhood events from #LocalCLE (food, wine and non-profit fundraisers)
@BikeCLE – neighborhood tours of CLE + local tips (fun fact: I met Anne in 2011 and took an early tour when she was just getting started.)
@CLEFoodTrucks – find them, try them all.
Know someone else I should add to the list? @briannekimmel with an intro!
Questions, comments, complaints? Blame @PJKimmel.
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- Point Nine Capital Founders Conference: portfolio companies only
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For tech companies, brand marketing is generally one of the last functions to be built. Traditionally brand marketing requires a large media budget and a visionary executive (think Bozoma Saint John, the woman sent to save Uber). However, with the influx of disruptive, direct to consumer companies like Allbirds, Everlane and Glossier, we’re seeing a new intersection of brand, customer support and product.
These customer-centric companies focus on trust, transparency and community as a competitive advantage against traditional retailers. Early customers are actively involved in product development and brand building. While most large retailers struggle with transparency and the immediate ROI of community, the new breed of customer-centric companies focus on building for the customer and the value of a long-term relationship.
According to a study by Label Insight, 73% of consumers say they’re willing to pay more for a product that promises total transparency.
At YC Female Founder’s conference, Emily Weiss shared her vision for Glossier and the future of customer experience. For Glossier, the 1.5M unique visitors per month are more than just shoppers. They’re content creators, product testers and brand advocates.
Some thoughts from Glossier CEO Emily Weiss:
- Engagement metrics aren’t soft metrics: likes, comments and original UGC impacts the bottom line. Every comment doesn’t change the overall product strategy, but each customer is heard. Beauty recommendations happen offline and online, so every customer has voice. They are actively building the brand and fueling growth.
“Beauty is an activator for connection. It provides a voice. Every woman has an opinion and she curates her own daily routine. Beauty is an equalizer among women.”
- Community builds brand trust and credibility: Glossier’s social content includes a mix of brand and user-generated content
When we look at beauty before YouTube, it was a relatively solitary routine. There was no community or ongoing education for the average person. Early lessons from mother figures and offline recommendations from friends influenced future purchase decisions.
- Commerce has become democratized by reviews and star ratings: women want the best, so reviews and user-generated content are expected.
- Listen to your users, but don’t 1:1 crowdsource. Glossier listens and engages on social media, but it does not 1:1 crowdsource product and editorial direction. Glossier’s goal is to listen, engage and inspire. Inspiration encourages experimentation and accelerates your beauty routine. In beauty, free samples provide a low risk way to test new products and go a little bigger and bolder.
Modern iconic brands have a strong editorial direction and a humble approach to customer feedback.
Weiss spoke to Glossier’s NYC showroom strategy, which encourages women to come in store and experiment. The retail location was designed for experimenting with new products. It’s become a social space where women meet before brunch and try new items together. It creates a sense of community and a tangible way to interact with the brand.
Follow me on Twitter for more on brand, customer experience and product.
When I hit my two year anniversary in San Francisco, I realized it was time to start giving back to the tech community.
Throughout my career, I’ve had a number of incredible mentors.
From moving overseas to starting and selling my first company, I’ve learned that asking for help is a strength and not a weakness.
So I started weekly office hours and 30 minute jam sessions in Hayes Valley to give more time to my GA students and fellow Y Combinator alum.
Through many conversations and matcha lattes at Boba Guys, I’ve found many of the best and brightest young entrepreneurs I meet are missing one thing: focus
For some, this can be attributed to a recent move to the Bay Area.
They’re frantically exploring all facets of technology and hitting every Meetup and startup event in town.
For others, they’re bouncing around in what I call the pinball effect. They pull the trigger by moving to San Francisco and then bounce, bounce, bounce hopping to hit the jackpot.
Here’s a quick summary of insights shared in my office hours:
- Start with a goal – write it down and track it in Trello
- Conduct a skills gap analysis – be honest with yourself
- Skill up – take a class, learn from peers, find a mentor
- Reduce the number of networking events
- Go deep – develop one or two skills at a time
- Take a class that tactically teaches this skill
- Find a peer or mentor to help build this new skill over time
- Stay focused – refer back to 1.
Some examples of tactical courses:
- It’s okay to sacrifice quality for scale.
- Empower your customers to create content for you.
- Test and double down on what’s working.
I don’t agree with the white majority.
- Blavity Founder Morgan DeBaun
Muslim Girl covers hot topics like immigration and more fun topics like fashion, fitness and music. It’s a great source for Muslim news and cultural trends.
- Muslim Girl Founder Amani Al-Khatahtbeh
I don’t believe in making America great again.
We can’t stay stuck in the past.
I don’t believe in bubbles.
If you feel like you’re in a bubble, change it.
- All said they didn’t have a clear goal for savings and future investing (ie: I’m saving money, but don’t have a strategy or plan for investing)
- All said they were not comfortable talking about personal finances (ie: I’m not seeing an advisor and I wouldn’t talk about it in a group setting)
- Most said they keep 100% of their take-home pay ($100K+ annually) in just a checking account and standard savings account (Really?! That means no interest or compounding benefits)
- About half (51%) of women report feeling positive about their financial futures
- 42% of women say they are confident they are making the right savings and investment decisions
- Of all the assets controlled by women, 71% are held in cash — a.k.a. not invested.
- Penny: Your personal finance coach
- Penny will categorize your spending and text you updates
- Food (and coffee and cocktails)
- Transportation (hello, Uber)
- Bills (rent, internet, etc.)
- Other purchases such as groceries (Amazon)
- Penny will categorize your spending and text you updates
- Digit: The app that’ll save for you
- Automate your savings
- Every few days, Digit checks your spending habits and saves a few dollars from your checking account if you can afford it
- You can then transfer the savings back to our bank account (hint: vacation funds, etc.)
- Truebill: Find, track and cancel your subscriptions
- This app is a lifesaver… period. Comcast, Netflix, Rent the Runway, all in one place.
- It pulls all monthly subscriptions, which is particularly helpful if you sign up for any “first month free” services
- Plus, the average Truebill user saves $512 per year
- Read Ellevest’s Seven Chapters on Financial Feminism
I’ve been spending lots of time on Whale. I have to admit I’m a total sucker for social apps and will download just about anything, but I generally lose interest after a week or so.
With Whale, I’m hooked. You meet awesome people and you ask them basically anything you want. Lately, I’ve been asked some really great questions which warrant a more thoughtful, long-form response.
Someone recently asked me how I start my day, which got me thinking about overall productivity and life hacks. So, I’ve been asking friends, mentors and randos* on the street for their best tips.
*Currently writing this from Sydney and rekindling my love for Aussie slang
For now, here’s how I start my day:
Gym or some form of exercise
Having spent four years living in Sydney, I quickly assimilated to the early morning Bondi lifestyle. This is something that’s stuck with me and I’ve found my most productive and memorable days always start with an early morning workout.
When I first moved to the Bay Area, I joined ClassPass and found this was the best way to discover new neighborhoods and meet like-minded, fitness-loving girls in the city. Now, I’ve transitioned to developing my own workouts using a mix of apps and trainers I follow on Instagram.
This may sound like a peculiar way to start the morning, however I’ve found Artsy’s recommended works and explore functionality to be very inspiring. Now that I’ve spent a lot of time on the app, the recommendations are great and it’s my own personalized creative outlet.
Recent recommendations include: Massimo Vitali, Yoshiyki Ooe, Alec Soth
When I started out my career in advertising, I made it my mission to learn everything about my clients. In agency land, there’s a very thin line between personal life and professional life.
During my time working with Nikon, I did everything possible to understand the whole journey for a photographer. I geeked out on hardware, invested in great editing software and spent a lot of time with professional photographers. Hence, all of my wonderfully creative friends in Sydney.
As part of my morning routine, I found Google Alerts to be the best way for staying on top of client news and discovering relevant content. To this day, I have a dozen alerts set for trending topics and companies I’m watching closely.
It’s obvious that PH is the best place to catch the latest tech announcements and discover new and trending gadgets. For me personally, I’ve learned so much from the PH community. It’s a great way to connect with new people and share your thoughts on the latest technology.
By geeking out on PH each morning, I find water cooler convos at work get instantly more interesting. For example: While everyone is talking about Spectacles by Snap and the random vending machines across America, it turns out you can create instant Spectacle-like videos with SnapView.