#startuppop releases TheBoardwalkIce.com Website This Week #boyntonbeach #florida

StartupPOP LLC, a startup agency and startup pitch event company released the site TheBoardWalkIce.com this week for client The Boardwalk Italian Ice located in Boynton Beach, Florida.  You can vist the website at http://www.theboardwalkice.com.  While StartupPOP primarily engages in startup pitch events as well as consulting to startups, the company periodically works with clients developing WordPress and Shopify and other non-custom code types of web projects.

Please take a look at the website at http://www.theboardwalkice.com and if you are interested in a similar type of website, we may be able to assist you.  In addition if you are in the Boynton Beach vicinity on Federal Highway you can always visit The Boardwalk Italian Ice a new ice creamery with home made ice cream.

StartupPOP is currently planning startup pitch events in South Florida, NYC, Tampa, Orlando.  If you are in South Florida, please attend our event on February 2nd, 2016 at 6pm at The Greenhouse.  Here is more information: http://www.meetup.com/Boca-Raton-Tech-Start-ups-Meetup/events/227700750/

If you are interested in becoming an affiliate running StartupPOP Events in your city, please visit our website for more information at http://www.startuppop.com/startup-pitch-event-manager-2/

My #2016 #Technology #Predictions

What is going to happen in the tech world in 2016?

This article is another version of the article I published in Linkedin about technology changes in 2016.  You can read that article (same pretty much, by clicking here on Linkedin if you want to follow me there.  The reason I repost my articles is Linkedin is not very diligent at getting my articles outside of Linkedin.

If you have read Innevitable Surprises by Peter Schwartz, you will understand why I think these things will happen. He has a theoretical way of predicting things and I just use his theories to come up with these “hair-brain” ideas.  Here are my tech predictions for 2016.

2016 Technology Predictions

1. Periscope Paid Services
I think that Periscope will figure out a way they can let users pay for services and let other users to make money from these services in both marketplaces and private sessions.  My prediction is that Periscope will become one of the faster growth revenue models in 2016.  I can only imagine what these services will be. But let’s just say video conferences, tours, etc. Somebody is going to make some money here, and as many who follow me know, I find Periscope very compelling!

2. The iBook
I have been waiting for Apple to introduce a version of the iPad that has two sides and closes up like a book.  It makes total sense because then you can close her up and not smash the screen.  Come on Apple, you have pretty much made every other kind of iPad thingy. Plus humans are used to reading books like books not like smartphones!

3.  The Drone Car
Why not? This was bound to happen!  We have seen so many of these drones moving packages and zipping around everywhere. I predict we will see a drone based vehicle for humans as a prototype in 2016.

4. Real Equity Tech Crowd Funding
This is the year you will be able to buy very early shares in the next Apple, Priceline or Twitter.  The government is passing Title 3 and Title 4 in 2016.  It is real and basically it will allow you to buy a couple hundred dollars worth of shares in early startups, long before Venture Capital comes into the picture!  And Venture Capital is not happy about the fact that you can get ahead of them.  It is a big time opportunity for the little investor out there!

5. Interactive Picture Frames
We have all seen those cheap digital picture frames you can buy at Wal-Mart.  I think that this year we will see cheap interactive digital picture frames.  So now you can not just watch pictures of your relatives, but it can ring and say hello!  This is good and cool, but kind of creepy.  This should be the year for that interactive video phone frame right on the wall!

6. Clouds In The Closet
I have come across this idea several times.  Right now we all work with cloud computing at some data center, some where out there.  I think a lot of companies will be bringing a new type of technology in-house for a lot of reasons.  It will however resemble and interact with the cloud.  This is really another Internet of Things concept, but the cloud comes home baby!

7. Mechanic In Your Car
The founder of Waze is working diligently on building an interactive marketplace where mechanics can access your cars remotely, bid on fixing your problem and monitor your car.  It’s a definite thing about to happen.  Market forces are working themselves out on this one, but they are focused and dis-inter-mediation is coming soon! (That’s an MBA term for removing the middle man).  Not sure who the middle man is in this case, but it is happening.

8. Big Guys Offer Beacon Services
I think Apple and Google are going to be crushing the beacon market with a variety of services that let anybody from retail to hospitals (who will pay) know when people arrive, where they go in the building and lots of other stats.  We see a ton of small companies trying to enter this market, but it really will take Apple and Google to do it to make it happen. Why is it going to happen big time?  Because it is the next evolution in Geospatial services!

9. Home Automation China Black Boxes
I predict a number of amazing products will come out of China that will assist in automating the home cheaply and efficiently, which can be purchased at Wal-Mart.  What will they be.  Well, how about a little black box that monitors your air quality.  How about one that is a connected smoke detector?  How about one to test your water?  How about one to monitor your kids?  How about one to monitor your plants.  Well, you get the picture.  Little black boxes for you and me to pop on the wifi to do little chores!

10. The End Of Cable As We Know It
I think 2016 will result in Internet based companies Netflix, Apple and Chrome (Google) and a few others offering a complete way out of Cable with all the “live” channels you want.  And take that Comcast!  I think that this is long overdue and there seems to have been a quiet period, but tech is growing exponentially.  Whatever the next evolution of this tech it will arrive and take the world by storm, because obviously what Comcast and AT&T offer right now is pretty much crap!

That is my prediction for 2016.  Let’s see if any of these hair-brained ideas happen!  If you want to challenge me or add any more then please add more on my original Linkedin article by clicking here. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/tech-predictions-2016-tech2016-dan-gudema?trk=hp-feed-article-title-like

Let’s come back to this article next year and compare notes, and see how many I have hit the nail on the head with!

By the way, how do I come up with these ideas.

Well, I run a tech startup pitch event in Boca Raton and work as a startup consultant, build brochure and eCommerce websites and have written a couple books about the Internet, tech and startups.

The company I run is called StartupPOP @ http://startupPOP.com.  StartupPOP is running a tech startup pitch event monthly in South Florida!  However, we are expanding nationally!

We are looking for local event planners to run our startup pitch events in other US cities.


Are you looking for a way to expand your networking and succeed with YOUR OWN event locally and still want to be part of a national organization?

If you think you have the capability to run a startup pitch event locally in your city or town and are interested in working with our national organization to learn how to do the event correctly, drive traffic, monetize the event and succeed at it then please sign up here on StartupPOP.com and we can start to have a conversation.  You don’t have to leave the day job.  You don’t have to be a startup expert, though we do prefer you have some inclination towards startups (like you like them at least!).  You need to be able to use a web interface, speak in front of small crowds, have some organization abilities and be somewhat optimistic!  If you are a consultant and already looking for clients, then this is perfect for you!  If you are already running a Meetup Networking group related to Startups, you can also join us and co-run your event with our pitch event! There could be even some money made from each event.  Let me know if you are interested in this part-time job!


Dan Gudema

How I Overcame My Fear Of #Selling

How I Overcame My Fear Of #Selling

I used to think that selling was a skill you were born with.

In fact, I always attributed my lack of ability to convert a prospect into a sale to my genetic, passive nature and my tech brain.

I was wrong!

Over the past 25 years I spent much of my time in management and technology related roles solving problems.  Developing the ability to solve problems is counter-intuitive to developing selling skills.

If you are an engineer, manager, director or VP (especially in IT) you don’t have to sell much of anything to anybody.  What you do in most of these roles is technically solve issues, which does not require selling.

My first experience and failure in sales was back in 1997 when I joined a consulting tech startup company in Fort Lauderdale, FL.  (Shout out to Solayre Media if you are still out there)  We were selling MapInfo solutions to a variety of South Florida corporations. I went into the role for a few months and basically never closed a sale.

I blamed myself for just not being a good salesmen.  In my defense we had a crappy product and a competitor called MapQuest crushed our market.  Let’s just say I never asked for a sale. I left with a bad taste in my mouth and a lesson.

I decided that sales was not for me.  I was destined to not be in sales, and I felt that sales was somewhat demoralizing.  That’s because it requires thick skin and often lots of attempts before you succeed.

I generally felt that sales sucked!

From that point forward I went into more technical, management and marketing roles, where I felt it would be a better fit for my personality.

But always lurking in the back of my mind has been the fact that I really do want to sell.  Though I knew I was a failure at it!

10 years later I developed a sophisticated software solution that powered several national event companies.  That solution is called Take It National. I wanted additional customers so I started to make sales calls and I set up a few sales meetings.

My wife came along with me on one of those Take It National sales meetings.  I thought I did well.  She is an expert at selling.  She said nothing during the meeting. Afterwards she looked at me and said “That was the worst sales call I have ever been on”.  She pointed out that I never got the contract out of my briefcase and I never asked for the sale!  I talked about everything but the sale.

Too much product talk is apparently a distraction when closing the sale I learned.

This lead me deeper into my fear of sales.  I never closed a deal for Take It National other than the basic clients it was built for, which is Pre-Dating Speed Dating.

It was not that my software package was flawed.  In fact it is quite a killer solution. It was not that it was hard to implement or difficult to understand.  It was and still is quite a good Saas application.

My wife pointed out you always have to ask for the sale and have a contract ready to be signed at the meeting or on the phone!

My wife was brutally honest, pointing out every mistake I made. I fell even deeper into my fear of sales.

Over the next year or two I ended up in a new business development role. This was going deeper into sales not away from it!  That means I went on sales calls, many sales calls selling high end web development.

The good news is I relied on my team members to be the closer.  I just brought in the leads and handed them off.  I became an amazing lead gen guy.

Meanwhile I was going deeper into the path of sales with my career, even though I felt I sucked at it.  The team did close a few projects I brought it, here and there.  It was not my sale though.  I still feared the sales process.

We attempted to raise capital for a startup at the same time.  As part of the startup process I went around and gave pitches.  Once again we did not raise the capital we required.  I was feeling like my ability to sell was pretty flawed!

Finally, when we founded StartupPOP, our startup marketing agency, which does business plans and small eCommerce and brochure websites for small to medium sized companies,  I faced a major dilemma.  I had to sell or I would be out of business!  To be in a “consulting” business you have to get contracts signed and checks in the door!

I was a 49 year old sales rookie trying out for the major leagues!

I had never really understood that selling is a critical part of our working lives.

We can’t hide from sales.

We have to sell our products and services.

We have to sell our ideas.

We have to sell ourselves as employees.

We have to sell investors when raising capital.

We have to sell people all around us the idea that we are better and deserve more because…we really deserve more.  If you just asked for it!

Working a job at a big corporation temporarily shields those of us who don’t want to face up to the fact that we will need to sell ourselves.  (If you read my other posts, I get into how I have never got a job from a job interview.  Let’s chalk that up to my inability to sell myself).

So faced with not being able to pay the bills, needing to make my startup agency work financially, I have had to buy into the concept I can sell.  Yes I can!  In fact, I have.  Ok, I have closed a dozen jobs or so.  Not that much actually.  But it is something for me personally that is a major breakthrough!

What I have found is that anybody can sell.  You just have to ask for the sale! And I have discovered that it really is a numbers game.  Sometimes you have to fail 9 times to succeed 1 time or fail 99 times to succeed 1 time. There is a formula to selling and volume can change your success.

Never Sell With Your Own Wallet!

My favorite quote from my wife is “never sell with your own wallet”.  It means you can not take the customer’s perspective.  If you do, you end up either convincing them not to buy or end up with a lower sales price.

Why should you never sell with yourself as the buyer?

Because if you put yourself in the shoes of the customer, you probably don’t want to buy what you are selling!  But this does not matter!  You can’t think like that! You are not the customer!  You need to close the deal!

So, faced with all of this, when I got the first contract for StartupPOP in front of a client to sign, the client did not know I was a rookie.  In fact he thought I have been doing this all my life.  I found out that selling is a facade.  You just need to appear to be the sales expert.  Beside, what does that require other than the ability to ask for it!

If you feel like I did that you suck at selling, you are probably right!  But, that does not mean you will suck at it in the future.  You can easily overcome some of the issues I did by simply following step by step the process of asking for a sale. And you will be surprised like I was, that people will sign your contract and let you close them eventually…

So it is true.  Always be closing.

Always be prepared to close and take a check, a credit card or Paypal payment. Don’t go to a sales meeting without a contract ready to be signed and the ability to be paid!  Ask for the sale.  There often is no second chance. You can always give the money back if you don’t produce.  But you will never succeed if you don’t ask.

You may think poorly of me, that it took me a lifetime to figure out how to simply ask for a sale, but I know many people who have yet to sell anybody anything in their careers.

We are entering a new world order where many of us will not work at large corporations ever again.  Most tech workers in the future will be independent consultants, free-lancers, oDeskers and Thumbtacks!  We need to get ourselves ready for this world and selling is the critical ingredient required to succeed!

To hire StartupPOP to develop your business plan or small eCommerce or brochure website please email me at dan@startuppop.com.

By the way, just want to mention that we are running a startup pitch event in Boca Raton, Florida on Dec 8 where 10 startup companies get up and pitch their startup. Here is the info: http://www.meetup.com/Boca-Raton-Tech-Start-ups-Meetup/events/226038039/

Have a great day and start preparing to sell in your near future!

[This post was originally posted in Linkedin as https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/how-i-overcame-my-fear-selling-dan-gudema?trk=mp-author-card, but as far as I can see Linkedin does not let Linkedin Posts get indexed by Google, so repost them here.]

Dan Gudema

What is wrong with social networking and social media. (I mean Facebook)

[This article was originally posted on Linkedin here https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/whats-wrong-social-networking-uh-facebook-dan-gudema?trk=pulse_spock-articles.  The reason I repost on my personal blog is Linkedin does not get indexed on Google it turns out!]

I and many of us have resisted social networking.

I have had a dozen or so people look at me with a smirk of “why are you asking that”, when I ask if they are on Facebook.

That’s because most of us understand what Facebook is.

It’s a way to chitchat with friends and family! It ends there.  At least for me.

Yes, I hear the world is on Facebook.  I hear it all the time.  But they should know where there is a line to stop at on Facebook.  There is a limit.

I don’t see Facebook as a way to market much of anything to me personally. That does not mean you can’t use it to sell.  I am referring to Business to Business ads and connections. And I don’t see much of anything of interest to me, other than checking on my friend’s kids and their sports teams and who is still kicking out there.  I don’t look at ads there.  I don’t click on and learn about brands or products or services there.  I don’t do my networking there to meet new people.  I don’t go there to find people I have something in common to chat with them about.

That is not what Facebook is for!

And Snapchat and Instagram are to me just other forms of Facebook, for sharing mobile, faster and quicker.  They are even more popularity driven among your friends.  The day will come for many kids where none of these social networks will make sense and they will move on, because they know they can’t really talk about anything of substance and be taken seriously by their peers through these early social networks.

Almost all social networks are basically high school proms on steroids!

I know what you are thinking.  I see several tech groups on Facebook I am a member of and they think it is just fine to be there.  I don’t.  I think it just opens up a big can of worms running groups there, because you are not going to be able to separate your personal life from your business persona. I don’t have anything to hide, but if I did, I would not want it on Facebook.  That’s because you are vulnerable on Facebook to people posting pictures of you and if you have a secret they can release it there whether you want them to or even if they really understand they are doing it.   Yes, you can hide photos or fix things, but essentially you are at your friends’ and relatives’ mercy so be good to them or beware!

So if you friend me on Facebook, what goes through my mind is what third cousin of mine are you related to or were you one time in my fraternity Tau Epsilon Phi at the University of Maryland (have to give a plug here, because we are oh so happy with the basketball team this year), or maybe you were in my AZA chapter in high school.  Ok, that makes sense to me.

I don’t want people I don’t know seeing pictures of my kids and me jumping in the waves of the ocean (I am thinking about visiting the beach today so that is appropriate and today is nice and breezy out there).

I don’t want to be required to chat with you about business through your Facebook account because you only use that as your mechanism to communicate. (That’s apply to Mark L).

So, don’t friend me on Facebook unless you want to shout out about Maryland Basketball.  (They are on tonight at 6pm!) That’s reasonable.  It tells me that you just don’t know how to mix business with your personal life when you friend me there and you met me a business networking event.  You are a bit confused. And you are probably making a vulnerable personal mistake now by combining the two.  Protect your personal life!  And keep your Facebook safe.

 Ok, so why am I so excited about Seyopa.com

Seyopa is a website where you can join or create online communities about things you are passionate about. Unlike Facebook, you are not there to hook up with your high school sweetheart or see old prom pictures or pictures of your friend’s kids at the beach.  There is a world outside of Facebook, the internet and all the wifi connected devices we have laying around the house.  That is simply pursuing a non computer based activity, like going to museums and travel and the things we should be doing.  I had to mention that because I am finding so little time to pursue anything outside of trying to pay the bills (trying is an ok word for this at best), getting my kids through school and just trying to put out the garbage on the right morning.

Use Seyopa.com to chat with like-minded people about subjects you are passionate about!

Seyopa is a place you go to discuss what you really would like to be doing or chatting about, instead of our normal work or personal family activities.  It means talking about art, sports, food, travel, writing, life in general, politics, kids, parenting, diseases, photography or whatever else you want to discuss with people who are like-minded.  It is about finding people to have that connection with.  Because that is something I never got out of Facebook.  In fact, I think if I chatted on Facebook about the things I really want to pursue in life, I would have some friends and relatives basically say “OK. why are you telling me this? Where are the pictures of your cute kids?”  They would answer with, “Dan why don’t you just get a full-time job?”  So, not putting my friends and relatives into the non-caring bucket,  but they don’t care much about my passions or what I do for my career. And this is fine, because it does not matter to them or me.  It is not a subject we need to discuss.  We are already friends or related.  I don’t have to sell them on joining Amway. Thank god I don’t…

So, if you have read this post this far god help you.  You may have to go back to work right now, so I understand that.

Just to let you know I am biased. I have been an advisor to Seyopa, so you know why I am giving them a plug!  But it is not just that I have to give Seyopa a plug. I actually sat with the founder and gave her my input and our team helped her with the direction of Seyopa.  And honestly Seyopa is needed and really is different.

So, please go to http://seyopa.com and register.  The site is not just a website with a simple idea, the founder is looking for feedback about how it should work and what should be the next direction.  The site is looking for thought leaders in each area.

And please forward or invite your friends to Seyopa.com who think like I do.  I think that is a majority of people out there!

By the way if you are introducing a startup and want to have me take a look at it and give you my input in a blog article like this one, let me know!  If you are in South Florida on December 8, 2015 at 6pm, we are running the next tech startup pitch event.  Here is a link :  (120 RSVPS so far and counting for this event) http://www.meetup.com/Boca-Raton-Tech-Start-ups-Meetup/

Please contact me if you want to work with me!

Thanks and have a great day.

Dan Gudema

4 criteria for choosing a #startup name

If you are about to create a new startup this is just some food for thought in choosing a name.  This article was published in Linkedin.  But curiously, I was checking on the google search engine and noticed it was not indexed.  So, I am going to write a series of articles about how social media technically functions.  This article is not just about names, it is a test of social media.

If you are creating and consulting to startups then I would recommend my book when it comes out.  To get on the list to receive the email about my book being released, simply go to StartupPOP.com and get on my email list.

So here is what I cover in the book from a very high level perspective.  I have come up with 4 criteria that let you know a name is below average, average, great or amazing.  If you only hit 2 of the 4 don’t despair, you can make the world love your name anyway, if you have enough money!

1. Memorability

If you tell somebody the name of your startup and 2 minutes, 2 hours, 2 weeks, 6 weeks or even a year later people remember the name, that means it is memorable.  There is no exact science to this. Some names are just more memorable than others.  You will have to read my book for examples.

2. Familiarity

If you tell people the name of your startup and they say they have heard of it or that it sounds familiar, you have accomplished the second criteria.  I will give you a hint.  If your name sounds like something already, it helps.

3. Personality

Does the name evoke emotion, humor or seems to have a personality to it, then that is the fourth criteria.  Names with no personality are not as easy to remember.

4. Says What It Does

This is the old standby, does the name clearly indicate what the business is about.  This can be simply the name says it or it alludes to what it is about.  Not having anything about what it is about is ok, it just means you did not hit this criteria.

Get all 4 name criteria in a name and you have a Yahtzee of a name. It is not easy.  Most people settle for average product names that only do one of this 4 criteria.  That’s ok for average products…  Stand by and buy my book about names when it is released by the end of the year.  Once again come to StartupPOP.com and sign up to get on my mailing list so you can find out when the book will be released.

If you would like to read more writings or comment on this article, best to do it on Linkedin here: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/4-criteria-choosing-startup-name-dan-gudema?trk=hp-feed-article-title-publish

By the way, if you are in South Florida, we are running a Tech Startup Pitch Event on Tuesday, December 8 at 6pm.  We currently have over 110 RSVPs and growing. This is a link to that event: http://www.meetup.com/Boca-Raton-Tech-Start-ups-Meetup/events/226038039/ if want more information.  If you sign up before December 4th, the event is only $5.

Have a great day.

Dan Gudema

#Paypal express checkout and #Authorize.net

I heard from my partners in my dating business they wanted to add Paypal. Ok, sounded good.  We have been way behind the times on this.  So, when an email from Authorize.net came out saying they now were offering Paypal, I was asked to add this new service.  I ended up spending hours reading through documents and using sample code.

After about 2 days and reading all these documents, and calling Authorize.net, I finally realized that they are not integrated, Paypal and Authorize.net are separate payment gateways.  I had to contact Authorize.net to find out the only reason they are combined is for reporting purposes, so you can see all your orders in one space.  This can be important for enterprise companies.  It was totally confusing and convoluted, but I figured it out finally.

So, I set about getting Paypal to work.  You would think that it would be easy.  The reason we can not do a simple Paypal integration is we need to know if the order went through and update our database once the order has completed.  Anyway, took me more than 3 days to figure most of it out.  The documents are very difficult to understand.  Even understanding the most basic concept behind why the two companies had anything to do with each other was confusing.

So theoretically when we get Paypal orders they will now show up in reporting in Authorize.net



#Periscope For Business Is It Real?

I have been an avid following of Periscope.  I think that it is rocking great compared with Facebook for business.  I understand brands using Facebook and other social media to improve their brands.  However, Periscope and to some extent Meerkat are seemingly for the first time a way to market services and products, live!

So I think that Periscope is real for business, and there are a dozen ways it can be used, such as:

  1. Sending out a scheduled Periscope session with existing users to demo a product or service.
  2. Getting random visitors to find you on Periscope and listen in and follow if you are compelling.
  3. Getting better indexing or links on Google for your business.
  4. Getting additional twitter generated links on Google.
  5. Just being able to find a live community of people that you don’t have to pay for.

Please check out StartupPOP.com and our new StartupPOP.com Blast service we have not go live with it yet.  Please come to StartupPOP.com and get on our email list!  Have a great day.

Using #Gmail like the Old Outlook

Did you know you can send and receive email as any email address you want through a single Gmail account?

I have been a user of Gmail since the moment it went live around 2001 or so.  Over the years apparently Google added and added tons of features in Gmail and I just got behind the times.  So about a year ago when somebody told me that I could easily set up my additional email addresses through Gmail, I was very pleased.  Who wants to login to that system or this system.

Yet, over the years I keep running into people who either tell me they feel they have to use either Microsoft Outlook or Thunderbird or other email programs that are often desktop for email consolidation and using one system.

So, whenever I point out to people that I use a single gmail account for all these email addresses, they always ask me how?

In fact, even though I see myself as a tech savvy person I often miss some of the details as well when setting these things up. For instance I had only set up the outgoing email or what we call the SMTP version of my email on Gmail and not the incoming.  What I had done for incoming was set up forwarding at the hosting company.  But it turns out this is not the only way this can be accomplished.

So, here is a site that explains exactly how to set up each of these processes:


You will see two scenarios.  You have to follow these instructions for both scenarios to set up both incoming and outgoing emails on Gmail.  What I find the best part of this is setting up emails I receive to be from specific domain names and you make a choice of who you want to send as…


StartupPOP Roadmap Book

In 2014 I wrote a book that is on Amazon called “Thinking Like a Start-Up”.  In 2015 I wrote a second short book on “How to give an elevator pitch for Tech Startups”.   I recently finished my third book, which I have not yet published about coming up with names for your startup venture.  As soon as this book is finished, I will let the tech community know about it.

Now I am starting to write a book about the Startup Roadmap.  I refer to a road map as a way to plan out your startup venture.  For startups, especially first timers, this is a critical planning task.  If you are interested in learning more about this book, following StartupPOP in general or want to know when this book is finally available.  Would love to find out from people if I should release chapters along the way on Medium and Pheed, independent publishing platforms.  If you think so, then let me know at dan@startuppop.com.  These chapters will be rough draft copies and will not be the exact final book chapters.