Leadership Lessons from NewCo’s Finest Executives

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What We Learned

NewCo MasterClass

Last week, during NewCo’s first ever MasterClass workshops, leaders and specialists from the Bay Area’s most innovative companies provided training in leadership and management. These were small, interactive sessions with founders, CEOs and specialists, sharing real case studies and actionable advice. We thought we would share the presentations with you, our NewCo Shift readers, so you can take the learnings and run. Now, go ahead and Get Shift Done!

Fundraising strategies for early stage founders

Jeff Clavier, Managing Partner, SoftTech VC

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My Favorite Companies & Classes to Visit at Next Week’s NewCo Bay Area

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Next week’s NewCo Bay Area festival is going to be our most impressive yet, with companies in three major cities — Oakland, San Jose, and San Francisco — all opening their doors throughout the week. We also have added a day of “MasterClasses” with tracks taught by experienced practitioners on Design/UX, Marketing, and startup leadership. All of this on top of our Shift Forum, which is most likely going to sell out of tickets by mid to late this week.

If you wanted to, you could fill four full days with nothing but NewCo experiences, and of course, that’s what I’ll be doing. Here’s my lineup of companies I’ll either be visiting, or would visit if I wasn’t running the program at the Forum:

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The Food Crusades

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Pointing fingers at farmers and ranchers.

Ranchers on Connealy Angus

Last night I watched a TedX talk that successfully induced fear into its audience about how we are being betrayed, deceived, and cheated into buying food that is raised inhumanely, unethically, and ultimately, is dangerous for our bodies.

The speaker dubbed the collective group behind this deception the “fiberatti — a secret society of people trained in deceptive food marketing.”

He first attacked the dairy industry, calling attention to the differences between the rolling grassy hills portrayed in milk marketing campaigns and the scenes of a real dairy. He then moved on to speak of the fiberatti’s influences on pork, poultry, crop farming, and the beef industry.

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Top Marketing Trends and Predictions for 2017 (Infographic and Analysis)

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Get Shift Done: Management

Tis’ the season to talk about marketing trends and predictions for 2017. And this year, the online community is delivering in spades.


Not that I’m complaining, mind you. I find predictions and trends posts fascinating because I love the preview of what’s to come.

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Bring ’em Back: Use Member Ratings in MailChimp to Reengage Your List

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Get Shift Done: Tips and Tricks

It isn’t uncommon for 50% of a lists members to be inactive. But if you can reengage 20%, even 10% of those inactive members, the rewards can be high. That’s where a re-engagement campaign comes in.

MailChimp has a built in mechanism for identifying your less active list members: star ratings. The more stars a user has, the more engaged they’ve been. You can see the star ratings for your users in the List screen. Anyone with less than 3 stars isn’t very engaged.


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Increase Your Email Subscribers by Integrating MailChimp with Facebook

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Get Shift Done: Tips and Tricks

One of the handier features of MailChimp is the ability to integrate with many of the common social platforms to grow your mailing list. In this tip, we’ll show you how to add a signup form to your Facebook Business Page.

The first step is to login at MailChimp. Now, click on your profile in the upper right corner of the screen (1), then drop down and select Account (2). Once in the account section, click on the Integrations menu item (3)and then the Facebook integration (4).


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Move over, KPIs — the Key Value Indicator takes data a step further

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Sponsored Post

Kelsey McGillis Interviews Matt Mayes, Director of Data Intelligence, Welcome


Why use KPIs when you can use KVIs? Welcome’s Head of Data Intelligence Matt Mayes spoke with us about value-based design, a new approach to data analysis that gives businesses a better look into why you are seeing specific results, and how to improve. It focuses on Key Value Indicators (KVI), which go a step further than Key Performance Indicators, giving businesses a clear path to act on the data mined.

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When 5 Billion Customers Shift Their Habits, You Shift With Them.

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How Marc Pritchard works with Google, Facebook, and Snapchat to help P&G transition to a new world order

Marc Pritchard, Chief Brand Officer at Procter & Gamble

If you’re a senior executive running a massive American consumer goods corporation, there’s plenty to keep you awake at night. Customer behaviors are shifting dramatically, and nimble startups, devoid of legacy business practices, are growing larger in your rear view mirror. Traditional mass market approaches to marketing and brand building, once centered around three networks and a strong creative brief — have fractured into an algorithmic tangle driven more by math and data than ideas and narrative.

And if the startups and the data aren’t enough, there’s the law of large numbers: Wall Street demands growth, and growth is hard when your revenue base exceeds hundreds of billions of dollars, and your core markets are flat to down.

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More than a Promise: Brands Are Platforms

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Image Flickr

David Ogilvy defined a brand as “The intangible sum of a product’s attributes: its name, packaging, and price, its history, its reputation, and the way it’s advertised.” This mantra has driven brand building for decades. It’s also incomplete.

Because of the relatively limited number of inputs on the intangible outcome, the craft of brand building was once seen as an exercise in control. Obsessive attention was paid to every detail of how the brand is represented in the customer’s experience of the product or service. Consistency was the mantra, so that the promised expectation aligned with the experience itself.

Then the world went digital. The world’s information is now available in the air around us. A representation of any product or service can be conjured on your phone. Consumers expect to access a brand on demand. There’s an ever expanding way that brands can be accessed — via web, app, voice command, chatbot, augmented reality, connected devices, IoT and more. In his recent piece, “This Company Might Make Apple and Google Irrelevant,” my colleague John Battelle profiled Viv, the startup from the makers of Siri that provides a computational “smart assistant” that sits on top of apps and web services. Imagine accessing a brand via the Scarlett Johansson character in Her!

Image by Flickr user m01229
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Conquering Email Subject Lines: We Read So You Don’t Have To

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Usually in this space we focus on Big Picture issues. This week, we’re looking at something much more practical: email subject lines. We all know intuitively that there are things we can do with those subject lines to make it more likely that people will open our emails. But we do that more from the gut than from evidence. What if someone looked at 115 million emails and figured out what worked?

That’s what email automation firm Yesware did. Email Subject Lines That Actually Work, its recent ebook, shares what works (shorter subject lines) and what doesn’t (subject lines framed as questions). Some of the more surprising findings: emails that look like forwards (with “FWD:” or “RE:” in the title) get opened more, although less so on mobile devices, and putting numbers in your subject line gives you a slight advantage.

Some of the lessons are what you’d expect. Lay off the exclamation points! Don’t pretend to know someone when you don’t. Never use the term “appropriate person.” And no, people don’t want to join your webinar. Yes, Yesware published this because it wants to sell you software, and you have to give up your email address for the PDF. But the tips here will be useful to you even if you don’t ever want to try the company’s product.