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July 19, 2010

Landing Killer Deals – BlueGlass LA

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We wrap up Day One of BlueGlass LA with a lesson in landing killer deals.  Professors Micah Baldwin, CEO, Graphic.ly and Lawrence Coburn, CEO & Co-Founder, DoubleDutch will be leading this most excellent of sessions. This is coverage you’re only getting here, folks. (I am possibly a little delirious at this point.)

Lawrence Coburn steps up first with seven qualities of killer deal makers.

Highly Networked — Ron Conway is the original super-angel. He’s unbelievably networked. Lawrence suggests you go read bhorowitz.com. Have good people in your network.

BlueGlass LA killer deals

Deal Making Goes Beyond Sales

  • Recruiting
  • Funding
  • Sales
  • Distribution

Uncommonly (and Verifiably) Credible

Have a (big) exit. But if you haven’t done that:

  • Write
  • Go deep — know your stuff
  • Have flagship clients

Example: Locationmeme.com

Don’t Chase the Wrong Deals

Business goals drive biz dev, not vice versa.  Yelp is the ultimate example. They were focused and confident in their vision.

Discipline — turn down the stuff that’s not part of your goals.

Have Good Karma

  • Business ethics
  • Reciprocity not demanded
  • Help up and comers
  • Create more value than you take

Example: Auron Hoffman

Shoot high — get to the decision maker

Go directly to the CEO, but be selective. Don’t pitch every single person.

…but don’t be an ass about it

…and you don’t have to ask for something.

Example: Paul Bragiel

Run Through Walls

  • Work ridiculous hours
  • Find a way
  • Be visible and findable
  • Refuse to lose.

Example: Dave McClure

BlueGlass LA killer deals

Achieve Inbound Biz Dev

Make the deals come to you.

Example: Foursquare, Fred Wilson, BuddyTV

Micah Baldwin @micah is up next. He’s from graphic.ly which is like my week in a nutshell: comics and social networking.

[Digression: DC really needs to release comic lines that I actually READ as digital comics. Why is it so hard to get my Batgirl fix? What’s with the lack of love for the secondary lines? /Digression]

Biz Dev 2.0

What’s the difference between biz dev and sales?

Sales is all about you. It’s about achieving. It’s about making goals. They’re money motivated.

Business development is about relationships. Most people need biz dev early on, not sales. They tend to be passionate.

Rule 1: Be yourself

If you can’t be yourself in an organization, leave. Literally stand up and walk out.

Rule 2: Do what you’d do normally

If you’re not naturally open, if you’re not a blogger, there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with being yourself (see rule 1).

Rule 3: Look for connections (Not just love)

If I got out and make an introduction.

Three types of connections:

Direct: Someone you actually know or can be introduced to. No difference between a direct connection and a friend.

Indirect: Tangential connections, where you want to pitch your product or service to someone because of the people that like, follow, respect the direct connection.

Enhanced: The companies are like minded and the product/service is complementary. A connection will enhance both companies.

Build bi-directional relationships. It takes time and trust, a willingness to be vulnerable and a clarity of requirements. Learning what’s important to each party and being brutal if those are not met. Walk away if it’s not working.

And he offers us free comics! Yay! He jokes (kinda) that you need to tweet out: “Free comics from @graphicly, so much better than @docstoc’s freebie! #blueglassla”

Alas, no Q&A for me.

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