You know me. I’m a big fan of the techie type get togethers. Beer and Blog, Ignite Portland, camp camp campity camps, user groups. They’re all part of what make the Portland tech community, well, a community.
It may be a short week, but it’s not a slow news week. That said, it is the Friday of a short week. And posting about really cool startups or important news may get lost in the haze of moving into the weekend.
What to do? What to do?
I’ve got it! How about taking care of some housekeeping around the ol’ Silicon Florist?
What kind of housekeeping you ask? Well, how about reminding you about all the ways you can consume Silicon Florist content and interact with the awesome startup community here in the Silicon Forest? Read More
As last week drew to a close, the Portland tech community was rallying to help the de facto hub of our community, CubeSpace.
The fervent out-welling of emotion and support continued throughout the weekend—even resulting in coverage from traditional mainstream media.
While there isn’t a great to deal more to report at this point—and Eva and David are understandably choosing to remain silent until a decision has been made—I’ve been getting a number of emails, IMs, and tweets about the issue. So I thought I’d round up what I could. Read More
Well, this is the last thing I expected on this Frenetic Friday. But it seems that arguably the de facto hub of the Portland startup tech scene, CubeSpace, is unfortunately in dire straits.
A number of us have recently had the opportunity to sit down with Amanda Hess. Amanda is working on a chapter for a larger piece on the Portland entrepreneurial scene, ranging from bikes to beer to restaurants to tech.
During the interviews, she’s been asking folks to describe the Portland tech scene in their own words. When she posed the question to me, I started to stutter through a fumbling response, when I suddenly realized I could do something better.
“Why don’t we ask the community?” I said. Read More
It never fails. All it takes is the first glimpse of that burning orb up in the sky and the first warm spell. And suddenly every Oregonian is sprinting to the local garden store, grabbing their shovels, and frantically tilling their backyard beds or their local community gardens.
But come summer and early fall, what happens? That’s right: too many zucchini.
Enter Portland-based Veggie Trader, a social swapping site that uses the Web to help overbearing gardeners… err gardens share their bounty with others—and get vegetables they can use in return. Read More
Hang in there, you entrepreneurial type you. You’re making progress. I know it. You know it. And now, other folks are starting to take notice. Like The Oregonian.
In a recent article entitled “Oregon’s high-tech better off now than in dot-com bust” business and tech reporter Mike Rogoway—one of the mainstream media folks in Portland who clearly “gets it”—had the following to offer about the under the radar startup scene: Read More
This evening, I had the honor to take a little walk down memory lane with the folks at Portland Web Innovators as we took a little time to reflect of the cool accomplishments of the Portland Web and Open Source startup community over the last 12 months.
It was kind of like signing yearbooks. A lot of nostalgia and a lot of kind words. And—of course—a lot of tweets.
I wanted to thank everyone who took time out of their schedules to come hang out and chat about our past and our future. And to those who took the opportunity to hang out online.
Here’s a quick round-up of what I’ve got at this point. I’ll add more as it rolls in, and as always, your comments are welcome.
Thanks so much to Bram Pitoyo for streaming this video and moderating the chat room. (NOTE: There’s a bit of a hiccup at about 90 seconds into the presentation. If you wait, it comes back. Or you can click into the timeline to kickstart the video again.)
I’m holding a contest. Count how many times I say “amazing” during this presentation and post it in the comments. You could win… um… I don’t know. Something.
We managed to accumulate quite a few tweets. You’ll be happy to hear that I managed to resist the urge to tweet during the presentation.
Sites I mentioned
- Urban Grind
- Green Dragon
- Legion of Tech
- Beer and Blog
- Portland Lunch 2.0
- Portland Web Innovators
- BarCamp Portland
- Portland Startup Weekend
- Side Project to Startup
- WordCamp PDX
- WhereCamp PDX
- Ignite Portland
- Open Source Bridge
- Open Tech Space
- Corvallis Beer and Blog
- Strange Love Live
- Chris O’Rourke’s Great Portland Interview Experiment
- Bacon Geek
- Portland on Fire
- KGW’s Stephanie Stricklen on Twitter
- KGW The Square on Twitter
And some folks have already taken the time to post about the event:
- State of Portland Tech – Web Innovators Live Stream and Event Recap
“Rick Turoczy (Silicon Florist) lead a discussion about the Portland tech scene heading into 2009. Where are we now, how did we get here and where do we want to go?”
- Portland Tech Community
“Over the last year, I’ve written several emails to people moving here describing different events to attend and at those events introduced people new to the area to others in the Portland Tech Community. Despite the fact that I had found myself doing that multiple times, I never really thought about it as a need. I just considered it some ways part of being a good host for the town I grew up in…. But there is a clear need. If someone doesn’t know to ask or whom to ask, they may never find their connection.”
- The Year in Retrospect, the Year to Come
“One of the things Rick declined to do was talk much about the ‘why’ – what’s the secret sauce that makes the Portland tech community a community and not some loose aggregation of companies and coders? Why is there such a drive to connect here, while other communities with equal opportunities just don’t work as hard? And most importantly, why is community so important to Portlanders, and what are local companies of all types and from all industries doing to connect and generate a sustainable economics through close attention to community members, the locality, the exigent needs of the people? What does innovation look like in tough circumstances?”
Today, creating a vibrant and interactive community around your product or organization can be the difference between unheralded success and unimaginable failure. And no one knows that better than Portland’s Dawn Foster, one of the leading authorities on the subject.
Dawn has just completed a series of posts on corporate communities that is a must read for anyone attempting to work online with customers.
What’s a corporate community, you ask?
Corporate communities refer to any custom community created by an organization for the purpose of engaging with customers or other people who may be interested in the organization’s products and services. For the purpose of this post, custom corporate communities include communities created by corporations, non-profit organizations, educational institutions and similar organizations. These corporate communities can take many different forms: support communities, developer communities to help developers work with your products, customer and enthusiast communities, and many others.
See? I told you. How could you not fit in there?
So grab a cup of coffee (or some bubble tea if you want to be even more like Dawn) and dive into this great series of posts:
- Custom Corporate Communities: Planning and Getting Started
Before jumping in to create a new community, you should think carefully about the purpose of this new community including your goals and objectives, fitting your community efforts into your organization’s overall strategy, measuring success, and committing the resources required to make your community flourish.
- Maintaining a Successful Corporate Community
I decided to follow up my post on Monday about Custom Corporate Communities: Planning and Getting Started with this post containing tips about what to do and what to avoid doing if you want to have a successful corporate community. While some of these tips are specific to corporate communities, most of them also apply to other types of communities as well.
- A Structure for Your Corporate Community
I thought that it would be a good idea to also spend a little time on the things that you should be thinking about when coming up with a structure for your community. It is important to keep in mind that every community software package is likely to have unique strengths and limitations when it comes to configuring your community. From a design and architecture perspective, I strongly recommend looking at this strengths and limitations of the platform and taking them into account before starting any design or architecture work.
- Promoting Your Community Efforts the Right Way
In this final post for the corporate community series, we will spend some time on the right and wrong ways to promote your community efforts. Some of this advice also applies more broadly to promotion of other social media efforts as well.
For more from Dawn, head on over to Fast Wonder Blog.
Sometimes, you just need a little push. Just a little one.
I mean, you know what you want to do it. You think you’re capable of doing it. It’s that you might not yet know that you’re capable of doing it—but you think you are. And, regardless of what “it” is, you could just use that little push. That little pearl of wisdom to get you off and running.
So if you’re sitting there, feeling like you need that little push? Watch this.
Vaynerchuk leads—and inspires—by example
But his story isn’t about the media, it’s about good old-fashioned following your passion and succeeding. With a little bit of tech thrown in for good measure.
(For those of you not familiar with Gary’s story, he managed to take his love of meeting people, added his interest in online video, and combined them in a way that increased his wine business tenfold in a few short years.)
And the public is taking notice. Public with a big “P,” like traditional media outlets. Like Nightline. Like Ellen. Like Conan. And that has catapulted Gary—in a relatively short time—from being atop the tech community to becoming a household word.
In fact, he’s easily joined the ranks of the Web 2.0 crossover stars.
“I am blown away,” said Vaynerchuk. “That I have been able to sign a six-figure book deal, have been offered over 100 television deals… [been] paid ungodly money to speak and consult… All because I sat and talked about what I knew.”
And while that’s impressive, it’s not half as impressive as the energy and enthusiasm Gary brings to the table when he shares how he’s done what he’s done, how he works to stay in touch with his community, and how he thinks that you, too, can make it happen.
Long story short, Gary leads by example.
Portland, Garyvee, Garyvee, Portland
And last week, having Gary in Portland to share that story with us was a memorable experience, to say the least. Having him hang out with us for another hour or two outside of Wieden + Kennedy, answering questions and sharing ideas—while ultrahip Blue Hour barflies shoved their way past—was unforgettable.
And sure, I may seem a little star struck. I may be a fawning a bit. But just because I’m gushing, doesn’t mean I’m wrong. You see, I’m not the only one who thought it was great.
- Betsy Richter: Gary Vee brought the thunder
“More like an old-time ‘come to Jesus’ stomp your feet and belieeeeve! prayer revival session – only peppered with blasphemies and exhortations of the most-definitely-not religious type, especially to the tech and/or marketing types in the crowd.”
- Dawn Foster: Gary Vaynerchuk at Legion of Talk
“If you aren’t loving what you do right now, you need to embrace your DNA figure out what you want and do it now. Figure out what you want to accomplish and work backwards from the goal.”
- Bram Pitoyo: Legion of Talk – Gary Vaynerchuk on New Media, Personal Branding, and Promotion
“This goes without saying, but the only way to be great is to be patient. Garyvee spoke about the fact that the facet of work that is both unglamorous and unknown to most people is the [thousands] of emails he answer[s]… everyday.”
- Beantime: The Plight of the Passionate
“Vaynerchuk’s take-away was this: if you are passionate about something, you can take that passion, and with time and attention spent on branding and promotion, turn that passion into ‘crazy’ success. ‘Crazy’ success, here I come….”
With Gary, Legion of Talk definitely started with the thunder. So who’s going to keep that thunder rolling? Funny you should ask. Next up for Legion of Talk is Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu and the second “tourist” in space. If you’re interested in attending, please RSVP on Upcoming or register for your ticket.