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Hello Blink Show
Harris Kenny and Shawn Hymel
Welcome to the practical podcast for technical people who want to start their own company. From founding to building your business, we’re here to help.
20 hours ago
Episode 17: Creating Quality Content: Why SERP Matters More than SEO
Search Engine Results Pages (SERP) are the pages displayed by various search engines when a user searches for a particular word or phrase. When creating content as part of your inbound marketing strategy, you’ll want to employ various Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques to have your page rank higher in search engine results. You can use SERP rankings to measure the effectiveness of your content and SEO techniques. In this episode, Harris and Shawn discuss how founders and marketers can use SERP as an important metric to measure the performance of content against particular keywords. They begin by talking about the need to understand a product’s niche and audience before moving into various SEO and SERP tips and tools. One Powerful Quotation: * 30:10 – Shawn: “You employ all of your good SEO techniques to make [your content] rank more highly, and then you use SERP to measure how well your page [performs in search results].” Key Topics: * 1:00 – Harris and Shawn talk about life events and various work projects. Shawn mentions that he’s working on a collaboration project with @Odd_Jayy (https://twitter.com/Odd_Jayy) and @glowascii (https://twitter.com/glowascii). * 4:20 - Shawn gives tips on how to find time to read books. * 9:00 - Shawn gives a definition for Search Engine Results Pages (SERP) and why it offers a better metric than Search Engine Optimization (SEO). * 11:45 - Harris asks about good versus bad (trickery) SEO. * 14:00 - Shawn defines SERP, which is an indication of where your site shows up in search engine results when a user searches for particular keywords * 16:15 - Harris talks about Google’s new shopping tab * 17:15 - Harris and Shawn talk about how product search engines within a site (e.g. Amazon’s search) differs from broader search engines, like Google. * 19:00 - Shawn mentions a recent development where people are receiving random packages containing seeds. It turns out that this is a part of a scam to boost Amazon reviews for vendors (https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2020/08/04/free-amazon-orders-scam-mysterious-seeds-packages-brushing/5580858002/). * 21:08 - Harris and Shawn give their perspectives on running traditional outbound marketing techniques, such as running Google or Facebook ads. * 23:52 - Shawn recounts his experiences creating content for SparkFun and how successful it was at driving pageviews. * 25:40 - Shawn talks about creating content to maximize SERP number. Namely, “evergreen” content that continues to draw users for years after posting offers some of the best SERP value. * 29:53 - Shawn describes how SEO can be used to boost SERP. * 30:30 - Harris and Shawn give reasons for why they’re using Binho, LLC (https://binho.io/) as an example of how to create evergreen content for a niche audience. * 31:01 - Shawn describes the importance of patience with inbound marketing. * 33:20 - Harris talks about reusing and distributing content. * 34:27 - Shawn talks about why voice and video should (probably) not be your primary content for inbound marketing (at this point in time). Most search engines still prioritize written content, so written content should be your focus. * 39:03 - Harris introduces his new project: Intro CRM (https://introcrm.com/). * 41:11 - Shawn helps Harris brainstorm ideas for evergreen content that could be created to drive traffic to his new service. * 49:58 - Shawn mentions that Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest tool (https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest/) can be very helpful for discovering keywords, creating article titles, and analyzing people’s search patterns. * 51:29 - Shawn introduces the concept of pillar content (https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/what-is-a-pillar-page), which is a collection of related articles that link to each other and all pages link back to a single, important piece of content. * 56:22 - Harris asks what would be good content if your audience doesn’t know the right words or jargon to use (i.e. they don’t know what a “host adapter” or “CRM” is). * 1:02:23 - Shawn talks about setting your expectations when competing with content from large companies. * 1:03:05 - Harris stresses the importance of having a good, differentiated product to start with. * 1:06:52 - Harris and Shawn talk about how to market products that may not have all the features you hoped for on launch. * 1:09:21 - Shawn recommends the book The Innovator’s Dilemma (https://www.amazon.com/Innovators-Dilemma-Revolutionary-Change-Business/dp/0062060244) to learn about how to create products that serve a niche well. * 1:11:11 - Shawn talks about the importance of needing to market your product while you’re developing it and recommends the book Content, Inc. (https://www.amazon.com/Content-Inc-Entrepreneurs-Successful-Businesses/dp/125958965X) to assist in this journey. * 1:13:50 - Shawn talks about his experiences creating pillar content and measuring SERP. He recommends the tool Serposcope (https://serposcope.serphacker.com/en/) to automatically report the SERP rankings of your site versus various keywords on a daily basis. * 1:17:34 - Harris asks Shawn about the tools he uses to measure SEO and SERP. Shawn lists Neil Patel’s SEO Analyzer (https://neilpatel.com/seo-analyzer/) and Rank Math SEO for WordPress (https://rankmath.com/) in addition to the previously mentioned tools. * 1:19:29 - Harris talks about his poor experience working with an outsourced SEO firm. * 1:20:26 - Harris and Shawn talk about the skills required to create good content and why building trust is so important. * 1:22:02 - Harris and Shawn talk about how to create content that’s relevant to your audience. Shawn recommends the book Youtility (https://www.amazon.com/Youtility-Smart-Marketing-about-Help/dp/1591846668) for learning how to create valuable, relevant content. List of Resources * Rework (https://www.amazon.com/Rework-Jason-Fried/dp/0307463745) * Sapiens (https://www.amazon.com/Sapiens-Humankind-Yuval-Noah-Harari/dp/0062316117/) * Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest tool (https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest/) * The Innovator’s Dilemma (https://www.amazon.com/Innovators-Dilemma-Revolutionary-Change-Business/dp/0062060244) * Serposcope (https://serposcope.serphacker.com/en/) * Neil Patel’s SEO Analyzer (https://neilpatel.com/seo-analyzer/) * Rank Math SEO for WordPress (https://rankmath.com/) * Youtility (https://www.amazon.com/Youtility-Smart-Marketing-about-Help/dp/1591846668) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/)
1 hr 23 min
Jul 20, 2020
Episode 16: Hiring Your First Employees with Jermaine Murray
On this episode of the Hello Blink Show, we welcome Jermaine Murray as our special guest to discuss best hiring practices for a company and how a startup can go about recruiting top talent. We ask Jermaine about his experiences that led to founding his own recruiting firm, JupiterHR, and about his role at TandemLaunch. Additionally, Jermaine tells us about his personal experiences growing up and how early experiences with STEM can help keep kids, especially minorities, interested in tech. One Powerful Quotation: * 56:23 – Jermaine: “How you manage your business is how you manage your relationships with your customers, your employees, and with your investors.” Key Topics: * 1:28 - Jermaine talks about his work as a recruiter. * 2:27 - Shawn asks Jermaine about TandemLaunch, a startup incubator in Montreal. * 7:09 - Jermaine discusses running his own business, JupiterHR, and how he focuses on recruiting members of the Black community into tech jobs * 9:15 - Shawn asks Jermaine about his inspiration for starting JupiterHR * 12:47 - Jermaine talks about how his experiences led him to helping companies recruit talent and create a more diverse workforce * 16:08 - Jermaine expresses how education (formal and informal) can help create a safe culture at work and curb microaggressions * 19:38 - Jermaine mentions that the 2020 goal for JupiterHR is to help 100 Black jobseekers find employment with tech companies. * 20:47 - Harris asks Jermaine about his thoughts on companies being more deliberate to hire from a diverse pool of applicants. * 23:31 - Jermaine discusses the need for a better education system for low-income communities in the United States and Canada and how that can help with diversity in STEM. * 25:04 - Harris and Jermaine talk about the importance of cultivating a safe work culture * 30:51 - Shawn and Jermaine talk about how accountability starts at the top of an organization when it comes to creating a workplace culture * 31:00 - Shawn asks Jermaine what companies can do to attract top and diverse talent * 35:41 - Shawn and Jermaine talk about how a small company can compete with large companies when it comes to attracting talent * 37:10 - Jermaine talks about his podcast, the “Launch” by TandemLaunch, which focuses on running startup companies * 40:23 - Shawn asks Jermaine what steps companies can take to get a more diverse set of applicants when posting a job opening * 42:30 - Jermaine talks about how companies can donate to and volunteer at organizations that help with social causes, such as introduction STEM to low-income schools * 48:24 - Harris asks Jermaine what smaller companies can do to show that they care about diversity. * 50:37 - Jermaine shares his experiences growing up and how he emotionally connects to the Black Lives Matter movement and protests List of Resources TandemLaunch (https://www.tandemlaunch.com/) JupiterHR (https://www.jupiterhr.ca/) The Launch podcast (https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-launch-a-podcast-by-tandemlaunch#/) Guest Contact Information: Jermaine L. Murray (https://helloblinkshow.com/guests/jermaine-l-murray) JupiterHR (https://www.jupiterhr.ca/) LinkedIn - Jermaine L. Murray (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jermainelmurray/) Twitter - @JermaineJupiter (https://twitter.com/JermaineJupiter) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Jermaine L. Murray.
Jul 6, 2020
Episode 15: Handling Workplace Misconduct with Kia Roberts
We welcome to the show Kia Roberts, who worked as an Assistant District Attorney in Brooklyn and the Director of Investigations for the National Football League (NFL) and founded her own company, Triangle Investigations. Triangle Investigations performs third party investigations for companies into allegations of misconduct, including sexual harassment, discrimination, and bullying. Kia talks about why she founded the company, successes she’s had, and what the future of company culture and human resources will look like. We also ask for her opinions on how new and established companies can create and manage a healthy and positive culture.. One Powerful Quotation: * 21:33 - Kia: “Employees are in a position right now where they’re making demands and they’re being heard, and I think at this point, there’s going to have to be follow-through.” Key Topics: * 0:48 - Harris asks Kia about how her career prepared her to start her own business. * 2:30 - Shawn asks Kia what the most difficult steps were for her when starting a business. * 3:00 - Kia talks about using an external marketing firm to help with client acquisition. * 4:10 - Kia describes how Triangle Investigations works to investigate workplace misconduct, including sexual harassment, descrimination, bullying, etc. * 6:25 - Kia talks about how her job at the District Attorney’s office prepared her for launching her own business and how she overcame the hurdles of client acquisition. * 7:15 - Harris asks Kia about how she’s integrating technology, specifically Triangle’s Telli platform, into her work as an investigator. * 9:54 - Shawn asks Kia how the Telli smartphone app works. * 11:30 - Kia discusses how her app helps inform decisions in the rest of her company * 13:45 - Harris mentions how Kia’s app fills a need and then asks Kia how she is funding her business. Kia responds that she is bootstrapping her efforts. * 15:26 - Harris asks Kia her opinions on what steps someone in a hostile work environment should take to address problems. * 18:00 - Kia discusses what happens when companies do not address misconduct. * 23:30 - Shawn asks Kia about what kinds of symptoms might appear if misconduct goes unnoticed or unreported in a company. * 25:12 - Shawn then asks what might companies do to maintain best practices around minimizing and addressing misconduct. * 26:04 - Kia mentions the “No Jerk Policy.” See below for a book recommendation. * 27:00 - Shawn asks how a company can enforce misconduct rules. * 29:15 - Shawn shares his experience with diversity (or lack thereof) in the tech world. * 31:09 - Kia and Harris talk about how fighting discrimination needs to be at the top of the list of priorities for CEOs. * 35:15 - Kia and Harris discuss how Triangle Investigations provides a level of risk management for other companies. * 36:00 - Shawn asks Kia how she recommends new companies go about establishing a healthy, inclusive work culture. * 37:51 - Shawn asks Kia for book recommendations. She recommends Book Yourself Solid (https://www.amazon.com/Book-Yourself-Solid-Reliable-Marketing-ebook/dp/B076G811V8). * 38:48 - Harris asks Kia where people can find out more about Triangle Investigations and how they can follow her on social media. * 40:03 - Kia talks about things businesses should avoid doing and what are proactive steps they can take to address misconduct. * 42:09 - Harris talks about the effect Glassdoor reviews can have on a company. * 44:00 - Kia discusses how nonprofits can be affected by negative Glassdoor reviews. * 45:55 - Shawn talks about how mission statements should include what companies do for their employees along with what they provide for customers and shareholders. * 47:30 - Harris and Shawn discuss the potential pitfalls of focusing on growth rather than sustainability. * 48:40 - Harris asks Kia for advice on how people in leadership positions can better hold each other accountable rather than adopting a defensive posture to maintain the status quo. * 52:22 - Kia tells the story of how a pastry shop in New Orleans had to shut down because of a string of sexual harassment lawsuits. * 53:44 - Kia shares how she got the idea for Triangle Investigations. List of Resources * Triangle Investigations (https://www.triangleinvestigations.com/) * Triangle Investigations’ services and Telli app (https://www.triangleinvestigations.com/services) * How To Manage Workplace Misconduct Issues For Remote Employees (https://www.triangleinvestigations.com/blog/2020/5/13/employment-laws-still-applytips-for-hr-managers-handling-employee-misconduct-when-employees-work-remotely) * Book: No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One that Isn’t (https://www.amazon.com/Asshole-Rule-Civilized-Workplace-Surviving-ebook/dp/B000OT8GV2) * Book: Book Yourself Solid: The Fastest, Easiest, and Most Reliable System for Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even if You Hate Marketing and Selling (https://www.amazon.com/Book-Yourself-Solid-Reliable-Marketing-ebook/dp/B076G811V8) * Book: Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t (https://www.amazon.com/Good-Great-Some-Companies-Others/dp/0066620996) Guest Contact Information: Kia Roberts (https://helloblinkshow.com/guests/kia-roberts) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Kia Roberts.
Jun 22, 2020
Episode 14: Leading a Developer Community with Kattni Rembor
In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn interview firmware developer, hardware designer, technical writer, and community leader, Kattni Rembor. Kattni shares her insights into how she engages followers and educates her peers. Listeners will hear her advice as she delves into her experience with Adafruit and the process involved with fostering a community on learning CircuitPython. Listen after the closing credits for an update on CircuitPython and how people have been integrating it into finished produts! One Powerful Quotation: *36:00: “I think it’s a huge part of growing a community is being open to changes and open to possibilities because, if you are rigid about things and you expect everything to fall within a certain scope, you’re either going to drive people away or you’re going to have a really bad day.” Key Topics: * 1:03: Shawn opens the show and asks Kattni about her story with working at Adafruit Industries. She mentions how she became involved writing libraries which led to creating communities for teaching and learning. 6:00: Kattni shares how she started with no programming/electronics experience and has become a self-taught engineer, developer, and community leader. 7:17: Kattni highlights her inspiration for wanting to work with electronics. 10:43: Kattni responds to Harris’ commentary on the tangible results produced from one’s work. 11:22: Shawn and Kattni discuss using Circuit Python versus Arduino. The two compare its programming application for educating users. 17:18: Harris relays a question to Kattni from a listener on her thoughts on the balance between using Circuit Python for education over finished products and how this will change over time. 20:45: Harris asks another a question to Kattni from a listener on adding support for RISC-V as a prioritized, developer tool for educational consideration on Circuit Python. 22:14: Shawn and Kattni discuss how Circuit Python supports specific development boards. 23:29: Kattni gives her perspective on what it means to have a developer community for Circuit Python. 26:02: Kattni talks about the forums she uses for collaboration including Discord and GitHub. 27:27: Kattni describes the free form structure of their forums with admins, moderators, and helpers that reinforce positive feedback and build better relationships. 29:43: Kattni notes that these positions consist of Adafruit employees and members that are active in the public channels. 31:26: Shawn and Kattni reminisce about old bulletin board forums and how moderation teams were made up of volunteer members based on their posts. Kattni adds the one difference with their community help is the quality of the member’s contribution dictates their position. 33:10: Harris, Shawn, and Kattni openly talk about planning a community and go about creating an environment that is open, safe, and non-toxic. 45:11: Kattni answers Shawn’s question on when to restructure your channel setup and curate a community that is adaptable to your audience. 46:47: Harris and Shawn wrap up the show and ask Kattni how they advertise and recruit members. 50:19 (Post-Show): Harris, Shawn, and Kattni address the commercialization of products using Circuit Python. List of Resources Website - Adafruit Industries (https://www.adafruit.com/) Website - Circuit Python (https://circuitpython.org/) Website - Ardruino (https://www.arduino.cc/) Website - GitHub (https://github.com/) Website - Discord (https://discord.com/) Guest Contact Information GitHub - Kattni Rembor (https://github.com/kattni/) Twitter - Kattni Rembor (https://twitter.com/kattni) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Kattni Rembor.
Jun 15, 2020
Episode 13: On Invention with Anton Howes
We welcome to the show historian and invention lover, Anton Howes. Anton recently released a book, Arts and Minds: How the Royal Society of Arts Changed a Nation, about how the Royal Society of the Arts encouraged invention and innovation during the Industrial revolution. As a result, we are excited to ask him about his thoughts on innovation culture and the nature of inventions. Additionally, Anton shares his findings on inventions that appear to occur later than they should have (“behind the times”), such as the popular tabletop game, Dungeons and Dragons, and the role of government in incentivizing invention. We also talk about pirates. Please note that this interview was recorded on May 4, 2020. One Powerful Quotation: * 11:15 - Anton: “If you can prove prior art--that you’ve done something before--then if someone takes a patent for the same thing, you’ve got very public proof that they can’t sue you for infringement.” Key Topics: * 1:00 - Harris asks Anton about how societies and governments can incentivize innovation. Anton discusses his book, Arts and Minds: How the Royal Society of Arts Changed a Nation and how a similar approach might be used to help people find a cure for COVID-19. * 7:25 - Shawn asks Anton his opinion on patents: are they good or bad? Anton says that a diverse incentive system is probably the best. * 10:30 - Anton talks about how an invention prize can be used to both maintain open source as well as legally protect the inventor from having their creation copied or stolen by proof of prior art. * 12:05 - Harris asks Anton about why some inventions seem to be “behind the times.” Anton theorizes that people get stuck in their ways, and so some innovations and inventions seem to take a long time. * 16:22 - Shawn mentions a Reddit discussion about Anton’s Dungeons and Dragons blog post. Anton talks about the importance of constraints on invention. * 18:15 - Anton talks about other inventions that seem to have been created too late, such as semaphore flags and the flying shuttle. * 21:00 - Anton talks about Britain’s promigration policy to attract inventors during the Industrial Revolution. * 25:40 - Anton discusses how location matters for inventors to be inspired and work effectively. * 27:54 - Shawn asks Anton about how inventors flourished during the Industrial Revolution. * 30:00 - Anton talks about the role of the government to incentivize invention in the Industrial Revolution. * 32:57 - Anton gives his thoughts on how society can cultivate a culture of invention. * 36:56 - Anton shares his personal inventors and invention stories. * 39:36 - Pirates! * 41:30 - Harris asks Anton if invention is ultimately good for society and humankind. * 45:07 - Shawn asks Anton to clarify the “promigration” term. List of Resources Book - Arts and Minds: How the Royal Society of Arts Changed a Nation by Anton Howes (https://www.amazon.com/Arts-Minds-Society-Changed-Nation-ebook/dp/B081J6JP69) Blog Post - Innovation: Eyes on the Prize by Anton Howes (https://www.tenentrepreneurs.org/blog/innovation-eyes-on-the-prize) Blog Post - Age of Invention: Where be Dragons? (https://www.tenentrepreneurs.org/blog/innovation-eyes-on-the-prize) - Why did it take so long for people to create Dungeons and Dragons? The Adventure Zone podcast (https://maximumfun.org/podcasts/adventure-zone/) - Inspiration for Anton to write about the invention of D&D Reddit discussion about Anton’s D&D blog post (https://www.reddit.com/r/slatestarcodex/comments/f66zlz/age_of_invention_where_be_dragons_a_historian/) Anton Howes’s Age of Invention weekly newsletter (https://antonhowes.substack.com/) Guest Contact Information: Anton Howes Bio (https://helloblinkshow.com/guests/anton-howes) antonhowes.substack.com (https://antonhowes.substack.com/) LinkedIn - Anton Howes (https://www.linkedin.com/in/antonhowes/) Twitter - Anton Howes (https://twitter.com/antonhowes) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Anton Howes.
Jun 8, 2020
Episode 12: Why Your Business Needs a Bank with Saira Rahman
In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn interview business banker, Saira Rahman. Saira shares her insights in how she advises her clients at Alpine Bank. Specifically, Saira discusses broader topics including why financial management is important and what a bank can do for your business legally. One Powerful Quotation: * 17:50: “As you grow, you’re going to want to branch out and have multiple relationships depending on what you need…It all depends on what your niche is and what you’re focused on and the level of knowledge that your banker has not only on your specific industry but also on the overall market.” Key Topics: * 1:05: Harris opens the show by asking Saira about her background. * 2:14: Saira shares how she became a business banker with Alpine Bank. * 4:09: Shawn asks Saira about the charter of Alpine Bank. * 4:56: Shawn inquires if Saira enjoys her role at a smaller bank. * 6:12: Saira shares how she uses Twitter as a means to discussing important items and acquire information for her work. * 8:14: Harris asks Saira about her experience with the process of handling commercial clients and the Small Business Administration. * 11:16: Saira explains the difference between PPP, EIDLP, and small business loans. She describes the process involved and how they are applied. * 15:16: Harris remarks that small banks have been very responsive to loan grants. In turn, he asks Saira her opinion on why it matters what bank you choose. * 18:39: Shawn inquires with Saira about protected guarantees with a community bank. * 20:17: Saira shares what to research for in bank’s financial statements including their balance sheet, income statement, and loan loss reserve. * 22:41: Harris and Saira discuss how choosing a bank should be a considerate decision and personality fit. * 25:03: Harris asks Saira about the drawbacks in having only an online banking provider. * 27:44: Shawn and Saira talk about why you must have a separate banking account from your personal. * 29:33: Saira explains the benefits of using a business credit card to streamline your taxes and help underwrite business loans. She also encourages listeners to work with a CPA. * 31:22: Saira notes the value of a business credit card based on the lowest fee and best perk available. * 33:49: Harris asks Saira her advise on increasing your financing needs based on capital structure and loan/line of credit requests. She also advises listeners to forecast their finances with a branch manager or accountant to plan out their goals accordingly. * 37:01: Saira remarks why it is important to have a continual conversation with your financial adviser through the up and downswings of your business. * 38:00: Saira shares what she thinks are the biggest mistakes small business owners make. * 40:55: Harris wraps up the show, and Saira shares her contact information. List of Resources Website - SBA (https://www.sba.gov/) Website - Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) (https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options/paycheck-protection-program) Guest Contact Information* LinkedIn - Saira Rahman (https://www.linkedin.com/in/sairarahman/) Twitter - Saira Rahman (https://twitter.com/sairarahman) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Saira Rahman.
May 25, 2020
Episode 11: Building and Growing a Software Service Business with Michael Dominick
In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn interview engineering and programming expert, Michael Dominick. Mike shares his insights on how he operates his business, The Mad Botter, an automation development company focused on making distributed teams and remote work more efficient. Specifically, Mike discusses his service platform for data analysis. Harris and Shawn talk about his success and ask questions ranging from business development experience to inbound marketing strategy. One Powerful Quotation: * 8:03 — Mike: “I would say the government is like the biggest, most bureaucratic enterprise customer you could possibly have, but there are advantages.” Key Topics: * 0:59: Harris opens the show and asks Michael about the foundation for his company, The Mad Botter. 2:35: Harris asks Michael about the customer types he serves. 3:27: Shawn inquires with Michael about the comparison in business development with military and civilian operations. The two discuss the pros and cons of government contracting and why smaller entities partner with larger institutions. 11:20: Mike advises that niche, proof of concept job proposals are the most widely available and act as a good source for referral opportunities. 13:28: Shawn asks Michael and Harris if they have experienced backlash from working with government contractors. 16:27: Michael describes his product offering Rabbot Automation as a service solution for data analysis among open source platforms. He also discusses his reason as to why he and his team developed Rabbot Automation. 20:57: Michael talks about his niche audience and how he pivoted his inbound marketing strategy. 24:56: Michael shares why Twitter is his favorite platform for business opportunities. 29:07: Michael, Shawn, and Harris share their thoughts on using Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. They note how their content creation differs in response from audiences in each medium. 36:53: Harris asks Michael his experience with how his business has dealt with working with these types of platforms in delivering their product services. 39:50: Michael shares why Apple is the most difficult developer platform to work with. 44:54: Michael explains how he monetizes from an open source platform. 46:20: Shawn asks Michael why he chooses to use close source applications but offers open source as a library for his audience. 51:22: Harris wraps up the show, and Michael shares his contact information. List of Resources Facebook - The Mad Botter (https://www.facebook.com/TheMadBotterINC/) Twitter - The Mad Botter (https://twitter.com/TheMadBotterINC) https://themadbotter.com/ (https://themadbotter.com/) Guest Contact Information* Twitter - Michael Dominick (https://twitter.com/dominucco) Twitter - The Mike Dominick Show (https://twitter.com/MDominickShow) https://www.automator.show/ (https://www.automator.show/) LinkedIn - Michael Dominick (https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-dominick-23107010b/) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Michael Dominick.
May 18, 2020
Episode 10: Time Management and Staying Focused Throughout the Work Day
In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn share tips and techniques on staying focused and productive throughout the day. Working from home can offer a great deal of flexibility, but it comes with the added responsibility of managing your own time. Finding motivation can be a tough challenge when family, chores, and social media vie for your attention. Specifically, Harris discusses the importance of food and exercise over other time management techniques and Shawn weighs in regarding the necessity of rest. The two then give insights on various methods of managing a daily schedule and keeping to-do lists before concluding with some recommended reading material. One Powerful Quotation: * 26:46 - Harris: “You can use Pomodoro...and whatever other kind of system you want, if you’re not giving your body the nutrients that it needs,...I don’t really care about the system [that you use].” Key Topics: * 1:15 - Harris opens the show by talking about how he is helping his clients navigate the Coronavirus stimulus and loan programs as well as how he is working with the Make4Covid group in Colorado that is making personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers. 3:20 - Shawn discusses his recent machine learning project and making his Arduino course free. 7:30 - Shawn talks about motivation to work while at an office versus at home. 10:06 - Harris and Shawn talk about the illusion of looking busy in an office environment. 12:44 - Shawn discusses the problem with distractions and his own personal experiences in understanding his own daily rhythm. 15:31 - Harris gives an account of how he handles motivation throughout the day. 17:47 - Shawn talks about the importance of choosing and structuring tasks to keep focus. 19:07 - Shawn and Harris discuss how nutrition, exercise, caffeine, and alcohol affect focus and motivation. They conclude that diet, exercise, and sleep is more important than any time management program. 28:56 - Shawn discusses supplementing vitamins for helping with focus. 34:01 - A discussion about preventative medicine ensues. 36:51 - Shawn asks Harris about his experience with a nutritionist and how it might be better than going to a doctor. 39:58 - Shawn talks about the importance of getting rest, not just getting enough sleep but also taking time to deliberately abstain from work. Know how your body works! 43:25 - Harris and Shawn discuss staying focused on a granular level: hour to hour. They share tips on various techniques ranging from calendar blocking, maintaining to-do lists, reminder apps, and personal Scrum. 51:56 - Shawn talks about utilizing ultradian rhythms to be more productive and stay focused throughout the workday. 53:23 - Harris and Shawn discuss the various merits and pitfalls of social media in their lines of work and how they affect productivity. 55:56 - Shawn introduces two competing schools of thought: should you use the morning to tackle easy tasks or hard projects first? List of Resources Make4Covid (https://make4covid.co/) Making It podcast (https://www.makingitpodcast.com/) Basecamp (https://basecamp.com/) Trello (https://trello.com/) Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Jeff Sutherland and JJ Sutherland (https://www.amazon.com/Scrum-Doing-Twice-Work-Half/dp/038534645X/) Michael Hyatt: Why You Should Never Start With Your Most Difficult Task (https://michaelhyatt.com/most-difficult-task/) Brian Tracy: Eat That Frog! (https://www.amazon.com/Eat-That-Frog-Great-Procrastinating/dp/162656941X) Buffer (https://buffer.com/) Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson (https://www.amazon.com/Rework-Jason-Fried/dp/0307463745/) Work Clean by Dan Charnas (https://www.amazon.com/Work-Clean-life-changing-mise-en-place-organize/dp/1623365929) The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg (https://www.amazon.com/Power-Habit-What-Life-Business/dp/B007EJSMC8) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/)
1 hr 5 min
May 11, 2020
Episode 9: Legal Q&A with Mark Tyson
In this episode of the Hello Blink Show, Harris and Shawn interview legal expert and attorney, Mark Tyson. Mark shares his knowledge and how he advises his clients into incorporating their business while minimizing liability. Specifically, Mark discusses how he helps entrepreneurs and creators as Shawn and Harris weigh in on the importance of legal counseling. The two give their insights as well as ask questions from listeners on recommended steps. One Powerful Quotation: * 26:29 — Mark: “What I would encourage listeners to do is to shift your perspective to… see lawyers…really the value you’re going to find is 'okay let’s do some planning, let’s talk through these scenarios. You know, what am I trying to do with my business? Where are the threats coming from?'” Key Topics: 1:35: Shawn asks Mark about an appropriate time to consult for legal advice. 4:20: Harris asks Mark to share about Tyson Law and how he acquires clients from inbound marketing and flat fees. 7:03: Mark talks about seeking consultation and the benefits of having a lawyer. 11:23: Shawn inquires with Mark on intellectual property and the cost of having legal representation for filing trademarks or patents. 15:19: Mark is asked a question from Twitter on the patent filing process being costly and timely. Mark explains how it depends on the product and market. 18:42: Mark shares his thoughts on forming an LLC or corporation. He highlights the differences between them as well as S-Level/C-Level incorporation. 21:37: Mark addresses Shawn’s inquiry into the structure of LLCs and corporations having stock or owner interest in another company. 23:25: Mark further discusses the tax treatment of a single member LLC from the IRS. 24:38: Mark contrasts the legal perspective of how lawsuits are handled with sole proprietorships and LLCs. 25:47: Mark comments on the value of having a good business lawyer for mitigating risk. 27:05: Harris and Mark discuss how strategic conversations are essential, and Mark shares a personal experience when he tried to hire an accountant. 29:23: Mark explains the reasons why most corporations are filed in Delaware. He also notes some of the disadvantages that are associated with it. 33:29: Shawn asks Mark his thoughts on the legal barriers in misclassifying workers as employees or independent contractors for a business. 36:25: Harris and Mark discuss how treatment of workers and the culture of an organization is essential to any successful business operation. Shawn adds that a mission statement should serve to benefit customers, stake holders, and employees. 41:45: Mark delves into the technicality of contracted work including hours, lump-sum pay, and length of engagement that government agencies may clue in on. 44:27: Mark reminds listeners they have a responsibility in educating themselves on any legal engagements they participate in. 46:17: Shawn asks Mark a question from a friend on arbitration and neutral jurisdiction clauses for intrastate/international business and if legal counsel is needed. 50:17: Mark shares his views on interviewing lawyers based on their knowledge, personality, and communication. 53:33: Mark suggests the communication style of your attorney should best suit your needs. 55:22: Mark explains why legal guidance is the surest way for trademarking intellectual property instead of doing it on your own. 59:09: Mark comments why it is important and easier to copyright your medium. 1:01:38: Mark details what are trade secrets and safeguarding that information from the public. 1:03:26: Shawn and Harris wrap up the show with Mark, and he shares his contact information. Guest Contact Information* https://www.marktysonlaw.com/ (https://www.marktysonlaw.com/) LinkedIn - Mark Tyson (https://www.linkedin.com/in/mark-tyson-2388482b/) Twitter - Mark Tyson (https://twitter.com/markwtyson) https://www.marktysonlaw.com/ (https://www.marktysonlaw.com/) Host Contact Information: shawnhymel.com (https://shawnhymel.com/) kennyconsultinggroup.com (http://kennyconsultinggroup.com) LinkedIn - Shawn Hymel (https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/) LinkedIn - Harris Kenny (https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/) Twitter - Shawn Hymel (https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel) Twitter - Harris Kenny (https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny) License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Mark Tyson.
1 hr 6 min
Apr 27, 2020
Episode 8: Making the Spiro Wave with Joel Murphy
This week, on the Hello Blink Show, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny welcome Joel Murphy to the show. This episode focuses on Joel’s work on the Spiro Wave "bridge" ventilator system that can be widely used in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and how designers/small business owners can contribute to their network. Note that this episode was recorded about 2 weeks ago. As such, some of the information may not be up to date. Specifically, the Spiro Wave device is not necessarliy completely open source, although there are plans to release parts of the design to help other companies make similar devices. Read all about it in this The New York Times piece by By Steve Lohr (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/20/technology/new-york-ventilators-coronavirus.html). Joel is an electronics design engineer and startup entrepreneur who has co-founded four startups specializing in customizable interface sensor devices ranging from heart rate and brain computing to hearing aid development and an open source fitness tracker. He presides as a board member at the Open Source Hardware Association (OSHWA) where he organizes hackathons and engages in public speaking seminars. As a designer, teacher, and engineer, listeners will hear about Joel’s latest project and how makers and small business owners can step up to help their community. One Powerful Quotation: * 35:28: “I think the maker community and the DIY community is really well placed and already has it baked in to share, to help, to give freely, to make a difference and to understand that you can make a difference in ways that may be are not necessarily direct. You don’t have to be the person doing to the magical, wonderful thing. You can actually be contributing a little bit.” Key Topics: * 1:31: Shawn recaps with Joel about the protocols involved with hospital treatment of COVID-19 patients and the demand around medical equipment needed. * 4:38: Shawn inquires with Joel about the shortage of ventilators and why they are used. * 6:18: Harris and Joel discuss the severity of the situation and the risks surrounding vulnerable departments of the world. * 13:00: Joel talks about his latest project, a makeshift ambulatory bag that is customized to act as a ventilator. Joel explains the difference between the two and how its implementation is used for emergencies. * 22:13: Shawn asks Joel about his team and if they experienced problems deploying their device across the medical field. * 26:30: Harris and Joel talk about how the sharing of maker/open source community knowledge with their networks can be leveraged into a formal corporate partnership. * 33:55: Harris asks Joel about his position and how his flexibility allowed him to take on his most recent project. Joel agrees and adds that the maker/DIY community can indirectly help give back to their network. * 38:05: Joel shares with how listeners can get involved. He includes associations needing volunteers and being “hyperlocal” in your neighborhood. * 43:46: Joel gives his final thoughts and why he believes in upholding regulations as a gate-keeper for safety and care. List of Bulleted Resources Spiro Wave in The New York Times (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/20/technology/new-york-ventilators-coronavirus.html) OSHWA (https://www.oshwa.org/) Tympan (https://shop.tympan.org/) Contagion movie (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598778/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1) Open Source COVID-19 Medical Supplies Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/opensourcecovid19medicalsupplies/) Make4Covid (https://make4covid.co/) MIT e-vent project (https://e-vent.mit.edu/) Guest Contact Information Joel Murphy (http://helloblinkshow.fireside.fm/guests/joel-murphy) Host Contact Information: http://shawnhymel.com http://kennyconsultinggroup.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/shawnhymel/ https://www.linkedin.com/in/harriskenny/ https://www.twitter.com/ShawnHymel https://www.twitter.com/harriskenny License Information: “Hello Blink Show” by Kenny Consulting Group, LLC and Skal Risa, LLC is licensed under CC BY 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) Intro and outro song is “Routine” by Amine Maxwell is licensed under CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/) Special Guest: Joel Murphy.
Apr 13, 2020
Episode 7: Early Sales and Partnerships
On this episode, Shawn and Harris tackle gaining early sales and landing partnerships. One Powerful Quotation: * 1:01:30: “When you’re looking for early customers, you probably don’t have a ton of leverage. You are probably gonna be more open to… changing some features or adding some features… If you’re getting started and you don’t have that leverage in the beginning, and if you really are very focused on bringing money in the door and getting started, that’s probably gonna happen in some form or fashion in the beginning, and then over time, you can adapt and move away from that if you need to.” Key Topics: * 0:49: Shawn and Harris open the show welcoming listeners. They both comment how well received the podcast has been and what they’ve learned from guests on the platform. 2:38: Shawn shares his latest project he’s working on with neural networks and machine learning. He describes how he’s using these to manipulate micro controllers and the challenges asso-ci…
1 hr 5 min
Mar 23, 2020
Episode 6: Dealing With the Coronavirus
We hope this podcast is of value to the you as the situation unfolds. We wish all of our followers and listeners their health and safety at this time. Please reach out @ShawnHymel or @HarrisKenny if there is anything they can do for you. One Powerful Quotation: * 26:00 – “If you’re a business owner or you’re a CEO, I think this is an appropriate time to practice good interpersonal management with your people. I would say don’t try to panic people… But in the same sense, be honest. Be upfront. This is a scary situation we are looking at.” Key Topics: * 1:00 – Shawn and Harris open the show with how they are dealing with their self-quarantine and social distancing. They admit they are fortunate with being able to work from home and mention of how many Americans cannot. 4:00 – Shawn and Harris talk about the content marketing strategy from big brands in response to the coronavirus. Shawn says many have taken a bare minimum approach with large email outreaches, and…
Mar 9, 2020
Episode 5: Getting Your First Customers with Jonathan Georgino
This week, on the Hello Blink Show, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny welcome special guest, Jonathan Georgino. Jonathan is a business owner and hardware engineer who focuses on working through distribution channels and closing multi-unit enterprise deals with his company, Binho. Listeners will hear from Jonathan about the steps he took to land his first deals, market to early customers, and build a quality product that delights users. One Powerful Quote: 23:02 – Jonathan: “I really recommend building your first boards by hand because you will understand if there is any problem whatsoever; if there is anything that can be improved, it will reveal itself when you build them by hand.” Key Topics: * 1:18 – Shawn asks Jonathan about his business Binho, and Jonathan highlights key points including his team of contractors and going to market strategy. He also explains their product, the Nova host adapter, and explains the many benefits that come from it. * 6:18 – Shawn inquires wi…
Mar 2, 2020
Episode 4: Understanding Developer Advocacy with Moheeb Zara
On this episode of the Hello Blink Show, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny welcome special guest, Moheeb Zara. Moheeb is a hacker, roboticist, installation artist, and software engineer. He currently works as a Senior Developer Advocate at Amazon Web Services (AWS) where he enjoys crafting new projects and generating content for those interested in learning more about AWS. Listeners will hear from Moheeb as he talks about helping businesses leverage their marketing/content strategy. One Powerful Quote: 29:40: “You’re building a better and better product and then you also have a community that’s like, 'Hey, we can also build these tools,' and then, there’s the opportunity for them to build more tools and resources on top of it...when you have those key developers in your community, they become evangelists for you.” Key Topics: * 1:18: Shawn asks Moheeb about his role and the responsibilities as an evangelist to his product development team. He remarks he has to keep a balance…
Mar 2, 2020
Episode 3: Engaging an Audience with Content Marketing
On this episode of the Hello Blink Show, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny talk about content marketing and how the right approach can help your business. They discuss their own experiences with creative marketing and how they go about finding their audience. Listeners will hear Shawn and Harris’s insights on servicing their clients and how to deliver valuable content. One Powerful Quote: "Make content that’s useful for people and they will continue to engage with you. Do it not to push your product or service on them. Do it from an actual, genuine, authentic way of 'I want to help somebody have a better day.'” Key Topics: * 0:40: Shawn and Harris open the show with what projects they’re working on. Shawn briefly mentions the latest book he’s reading, “Talking to Strangers” by Malcolm Gladwell. * 5:50: Shawn and Harris discuss an overview on content marketing and understanding the difference between inbound and outbound marketing. Harris mentions how businesses should a…
Mar 2, 2020
Episode 2: Starting a Fashion Brand with Kitty Yeung
On this episode of the Hello Blink Show, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny welcome friend and innovator, Kitty Yeung. Kitty has lead extensive positions as a research scientist, hardware engineer, and user experience designer at Intel and Microsoft. With her degrees in Applied Physics and Natural Sciences from Harvard and Cambridge University, Kitty is passionate about integrating technology, science, design, and art into her fashion brand, Art by Physicist. Listeners will enjoy hearing Kitty’s perspective on building a sustainable, eco-friendly business as she and Shawn/Harris discuss the essentials into launching your next start-up. Kitty currently works as Senior Program Manager at Microsoft Quantum Systems on quantum computing education and enjoys her many roles as a physicist, artist, maker, fashion designer, and musician. She frequently gives talks reflecting her personal passion and career experience in the wearables industry, digital transformation, quantum computing, and in…
Feb 14, 2020
Episode 1: Starting Something New
Welcome to the Hello Blink Show. This week, hosts Shawn Hymel and Harris Kenny introduce listeners to the podcast and what key themes will be discussed. Shawn Hymel is a technology marketing strategist and content creator specializing in technical content and product development for clients. Through content creation and in-person workshops, he is passionate in creating memorable experiences for his audiences. Harris Kenny is the principal of his own consulting group which focuses on providing sales and marketing services for helping businesses grow. He has helped close deals with numerous businesses, schools, and government institutions based on their aligning goals and objectives. The duo wants to share this platform as an inspiration for those who may be considering starting their own business and what that entails. Listeners will enjoy their views on what that means, their words of advice, and upcoming interviews with those who have done the same. One Powerful Quote: "This decision…