What Separates the 15% of Startups that Successfully Find Angel Investment from the 85% that Do Not?

Presented By The EntreTech Forum


Emerging Enterprise Center at Foley Hoag

Bay Colony Corporate Center, North Entrance
1000 Winter Street - Suite 4000
Waltham, MA 02451

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June 18, 2013 6:30PM–9:30PM


In the early stages of a startup, when an idea is just being turned to a viable product and the entrepreneur is creating a company, most of the focus is on building a prototype, and getting funding. Next in line for time and attention is getting a beta customer. From there, it's build, build, build and sell, sell, sell.

There are a record number of startups in the marketplace today across all sectors. What separates the 15% of startups that successfully find angel investment from the 85% that do not? Obviously, many things. But one thing that may not come up on the radar is marketing. Whether a startup is successful is based equally on the innovation being offered and the startup's ability to engage the market. The marketing effort should be an illustration of the startup's ability to engage the market. Investors know this, value it and place their investment accordingly.

At the beginning, marketing is targeted to early adopters and investors. How do you sell yourself and your concept? How do you know you are on the right track? How should feedback, positive and negative, impact your marketing message? What metrics can you use to measure return? Join us at the next EntreTech Forum session to discuss successful marketing strategies with our panel of successful entrepreneurs and advisors. They will share their experiences and lead a discussion with the audience on what works and what doesn't.


George McQuilken, eCoast Angels, Publisher, Angel Investing News

George is a founding member of the eCoast Angels Network, a group of private investors backing early stage companies, one of the oldest angel groups in the Northeast.  He is also the Editor and Publisher of Angel Investing News, a newsletter providing news, opinions, and advice for early stage investors. 

George has over 30 years of experience as a successful entrepreneur and advisor to other entrepreneurs. He was a founding CEO of four companies, including RSA Security, now part of EMC. As Editor of the IBM Systems Journal, he published many of the seminal papers on software management, measurement, security, and quality. He was also a project leader at IBM's Cambridge Scientific Center working on virtual machines and networking. George holds a BS from MIT and is a member of the IEEE and ACM.

Ken Smith

Ken is a senior business development professional and start-up executive with experience in consumer tech, digital media, clean tech, and mobile industries. He co-founded Arnold Interactive (division of Arnold Worldwide) in 1995 which acquired Circle Interactive in 1996. In 1997 he launched the Internet Strategy Practice at USWeb which IPOd in 1998. Immediately following he launched the eRetail Strategy Practice for Mainspring which was later acquired by IBM. Ken moved to the client side in 1999 as VP Marketing and Strategy for eYak which continues operations today under the name Sonexis. He then founded his own start-up in 2000 called Digiticians which was sold to Peak8 in 2007. At the end of 2007 he started his own consulting firm focusing on technology solutions for the rapidly growing renewable energy marketplace. 

He currently serves on the MIT Enterprise Forum CEO Services Committee and created the innovation training program Selling Innovation scheduled to be held at locations world-wide. He is a business plan reviewer and start-up coach for Springboard Enterprises and has consulted to start-ups in the consumer tech, clean tech, digital media, and mobile industries.

Dick Andersen, Partner, Joppa Global Marketing

Dick has decades of experience in strategic marketing, product management, and operations expertise he delivers to Joppa clients. Prior to Joppa, he was the President and COO of NextChoice where he was responsible for the overall direction and operations of the company. Prior to NextChoice, Dick has held executive positions at technology companies in the New England Area including VP level positions at TotalView Technologies, HighStreet Networks and NetSilicon. He also spent over 20 years at Compaq/Digital rising to Director level developing and leading marketing programs to several industries and leading teams delivering a complete portfolio of software, networking and management products.

Dick holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Northeastern University and a Masters of Business Administration from Suffolk University.