Thursday, November 25, 2010

Smart or Dumb? MySpace + Facebook Mashup

Will this move breath life back into MySpace?

Maybe?



Sunday, November 21, 2010

Flagler County Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours

Here are some sights, smiles, and sounds from the Flagler Chamber's Business After Hours Event hosted by Office Divvy in Palm Coast, FL on October 28, 2010:

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Klout is extremely accurate!

Klout is a website/application that measures one's twitter influence.

The company says:
" Our goal is to accurately measure that influence and provide context around who a person influences and the specific topics they are most influential on.  Klout tracks the impact of your opinions, links and recommendations across your social graph. We collect data about the content you create, how people interact with that content and the size and composition of your network. From there, we analyze the data to find indicators of influence and then provide you with innovative tools to interact with and interpret the data."
...and indeed they absolutely do a great job in delivering on that promise.  Founded by Joe Fernandez, we find Klout to be extremely accurate.

Here's Office Divvy's own LeTeeshia's Klout Score and Summary:



Her twitter profile, @AskPalmCoast really focuses on "Professional and Business life, events and tips in Palm Coast, Bunnell, Flagler Beach and Flagler County, Florida."  She aggregates content along those lines and shares with fellow Palm Coasters and Flagler County residents.  Since 2009, she's become the spokesperson of Palm Coast and Flagler County on twitter and facebook.

Even though her overall Klout skores appears to be low (5), the application, Klout, categorizes LeTeeshia's "Ask Palm Coast" twitter account as a "thought leader" saying:
" Palm Coast Concierge is a Thought Leader: You are a thought leader in your industry. Your followers rely on you, not only to share the relevant news, but to give your opinion on the issues. People look to you to help them understand the day's developments. You understand what's important and what your audience values."
This is extremely accurate.  LeTeeshia's twitter account is very concentrated in focus, so many in the twitterland know her. It's good to see that you can be categorized as a thought leader with a low klout score. 

Klout is built in to many twitter applications, which helps making the twitter's "follow" experience better.  Next time before you follow somebody on twitter, remember to check their Klout score and summary.

A big Kudos to Klout!



Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Wednesday, October 21, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

New Facebook Feature: "Page Browser"

New "Facebook Page Browser" makes finding new facebook pages a bit easier, faster, and simpler, and it's nice to look at, too:. 


Finding facebook pages have been a challange.  The search function to find new facebook pages have been problematic.  Facebook doesn't allow exclusive Page Names.  There could be many pages named exactly the same (though vanity URL's are unique obviously --but that's another blog post).

Here is how to use the new facebook page browser:

Sunday, September 26, 2010

"Neither Success not failure is ever final" ~ Roger W. Babson

Success and failure continually occupies the mind of any entrepreneur.  Many believe "Success Breed Success" and "Failure Breeds Failure" and some belive "Failure Breeds Success." 

Here's an interesting quote that stands out, and it's a very good reminder for those of us in business, by the founder of the famed business school, Babson College in Massachusetts, Roger W. Babson:


In addition to being a founder of Babson College, Roger Ward Babson was an entrepreneur and business theorist in the first half of the 20th century. He founded Webber College (now Webber International University located in Babson Park, Florida), and the now defunct Utopia College, in Eureka, Kansas.


Related Posts on Success and Failure:

Randy Seitz's Powerful Quotes on "Failure"

Biggest Successes Often Bred from Failures?


Thursday, September 23, 2010

And the verdict for the New Twitter Web Interface is...

Received the notice earlier today that the new twitter interface is available for the @OfficeDivvy twitter account.



After half-a-day of use, here is our multi-dimensional, and totally scientific results based on our own user testing:

★★★★★  First impression
★★★★★  Functionality
★★★★★  Ease of Use 
★★★★★  Ambiance
★★★★★  Food Quality

Thumbs Up For...
Aside from all the obvious and wonderful improvements (such as the ability to see images and video in the twitter stream), one thing I like is the single-click individual follower statistics. In the old twitter interface, learning about a follower was burdensome.  Now, a single click shows me who the follower is, making me decide whether or not to follow back.

Overlooked?
It appears the "tweet source" field is no longer there.  The old interface showed where each tweet came from, i.e. Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Twitterfeed, API, facebook, etc. etc.  Because I am hyper sensitive to absentee tweeting (to me if the source is showing API or twitterfeed or similar, I'll totally discount your twitter account),  I find this information very useful.  Though it seems the tweet source is not showing in the new web interface.  I'm hoping this is temporary and will be fixed.




Of course there is always room for improvement, but I like the new direction and the new set of functionalities, and that gets the new twitter a very high rating from me.  Further, much of the improvements seem more oriented towards "listening" (tuning into other people's tweets), and that puts the core of twitter right where the core of twitter should be... 





Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Thursday, September 23, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Twitter's Big Announcement: Merging Rich Media to Timeline!

A tremendous improvement on the part of Twitter has been formally announced: Inline Mulltimedia (images and videos) will be available right on your twitter timeline.

Twitter says:
" We've learned something since starting twitter: Life Doesn't Always fit into 140 characters or less."



Here is Twitter founder Evan Williams' timeline breaking the news as he was announcing the changes at twitter:

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Twitter Announces built-in URL Shortener

Twitter announces they are soon to release t.co --twitter's own URL shortening service built-in to the twitter's own web interface.


Other than convenience of doing it all in one place for those folks who tweet using twitter's own web-interface Primary, it appears primarily security is on twitter's mind:
" Twitter’s link service at http://t.co  is used to better protect users from malicious sites that engage in spreading malware, phishing attacks, and other harmful activity. A link converted by Twitter’s link service is checked against a list of potentially dangerous sites. When there’s a match, users can be warned before they continue."
Twitter seems to still mention and even endorse their strategic (?) partner, bit.ly, however in long term as they improve the service and reporting and metrics, it is certain that they will eat bit.ly's lunch.

You can read Twitter's official announcement here


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Angel Investor, Ex Googler, Aydin Senkut on Google & Angels

Good interview with Aydin Senkut, and ex-googler-turned-angel-investor; founder of Felicis Ventures.  Whether you are a startup founder, an entrepreneur, an angel investor, or angel wannabe, you will enjoy this video interview...

To give you a taste, here is one gem (one of Aydin's quotes) that I though stood out:
To be a good angel investor, " you need to be able to relate to the founders, and good at closing deals."


Aydin also says that back in the day he worked at Google, one interesting view was:
" Any project that can't be done with three people in three months, shouldn't be done; or the team is bad."

Without further ado, enjoy:




Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Connect:  Ky on Twitter  |  Office Divvy on Twitter  |  On Facebook

Saturday, July 31, 2010

25 "P"s of Social Media and New Media Marketing...

You probably heard about the 5 "P"s of Marketing:
  • Product: The products or services offered to your customers/clients.
  • Price: The pricing strategy for the desired profit margin.
  • Place: Distribution --getting your product/service to your target market.
  • Promotion: Communicating with your customers.
  • People: The value of your people and people at large (i.e. influencers)

Now with the New Media the same list has been re-purposed for the social media channels such as twitter, facebook, linkedin, foursquare etc. etc.  Some folks talk about the 3 P's some talk about the 4 P's... 

But if you think about it, Social Media is different; with Web 2.0 it is no longer a monologue, it's now a dialogue, so there really are more than just a handful P's in Social Media and Social Media Marketing.

So let's take it up a notch, shall we?..  Here is the 25 P's of Social Media we can think of:
  • Provide: Something of value...
  • Petition: Demand innovation, make folks, platforms, messages better!
  • Productize:  Yes, new word!  Make your offer easy to understand!
  • Promote: Your product, service, business, events, news (don't overdo).
  • Personalize: Let them see the "real" you.
  • Participate: Interact and engage (your audience)
  • Play: Take it easy, it's not all strategy... :)
  • Pace: Take it easy, don't over do it.  Just don't!
  • Protect: Protect your brand, industry, service, peers
  • Plan: Yes, plan --don't just do it!
  • Propel: Initiate discussions, bring the best out in people.
  • Pamper: Recognize players, collaborate, give credit where credit is due.
  • Partake: Answer questions, participate in discussions/chats.
  • Peer: Do not underestimate players based on their followers, community
  • Penetrate: Cover all aspects
  • Patrol: Entire landspace --correct & clarify statements and behaviors
  • Perform: Do it!  Just do it!
  • Persist: Don't give up!
  • Predict: Think what's next...
  • Pioneer: Don't hold back, try different things (white hat rule though!)
  • Practice: Don't be afraid, practice makes perfect; learnings await you!
  • Propose: Propose ideas, solicit business (humbly), ask for collaboration.
  • Punctuate: Don't be afraid of repeating your point, though not bot-like.
  • Pursue: Follow up; be persistent to engage: to get answers, be heard.
  • Pay Attention: To influencers, trends, competition, customers.
Also pay attention to the fact there are are more letters in the alphabet! Why is the letter "P" significant?  The answer is, it is not!  We just wanted to expand on the existing discussion on Social Media and on Marketing based on our own thoughts and learnings, that's all... :)

..and you know what the biggest P is?

Be Positive!

Hey, speaking of 'P's, can you think of more Ps?..

______________
Connect with us: Office Divvy on twitter | on facebook



One of the things we do is Social Media Consulting, Marketing, and Outsourcing for Small Business.  Reach us out for online strategy and social media for a free, confidential consultation!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Mail Never Stops! Feel frustrated over your email inbox?



Remember the famous scene from Seinfeld?
George Costanza: Why do the Postal Workers go "postal" and shoot everybody?

Newman: Because the mail never stops!  It just keeps coming and coming and coming... There's never a let up, it's relentless!




Do you feel this way about your email inbox?

Or now that the new media is here, maybe even about your twitter or facebook timeline?

We can give advice here on productivity and time management and how to tips to deal with your email or on how to tune in and listen to folks on your twitter and facebook timeline; but we won't.  Because no matter how hard we try, we are on the same boat as (almost) anyone out there!

What are some of the ways YOU deal with your inbox and twitter and facebook timelines?


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tweetdeck Souped Up? No, it's just the real time twitter activity!

This super-edition of tweetdeck shows twitter activity in real time (meaning it's not sped up). You better believe your eyes:

Monday, July 26, 2010

Twitter to include rich media in your timeline... Maybe?

This is truly exciting news -- Mashable broke the news today that Twitter will include pictures and videos in the twitter timeline. It truly enriches an otherwise what could be a very dry twitter experience.

Once concern from the community is: "Can the already stressed out twitter infrastructure handle this kind of move?

Or does it mean that we will see more of this?

The "inline media" was made available to select accounts for a few hours; though, almost as soon as the news broke, it sounds like twitter rolled it back.

Mashable says they received a note from twitter saying:

We’re constantly exploring features and settings. What you saw was a small test of a potential consumption setting for inline media. We show inline media on our own iPhone and Android apps.



Sunday, July 18, 2010

7 Select Articles on Startups, Entrepreneurship, Small Business, and Technology


Here's a compilation of select articles and blog posts on Startup, Entrepreneur, and Small Business matters which came on our radar recently

We typically share much on twitter and facebook, but the particular news, articles, and blog posts that really stand out, we compile them here on our blog every Sunday.

Are Successful Women Entrepreneurs Different From Men?
Yes! Women are entrepreneurs too! But how do they differ from the men? There are differences, and researchers are left surprised by results.
Why Morning People Rule the World
Not that evening people are life's losers; some of our best friends are evening people... But studies show there are many advantages your "morning-ness" can give you. Don't have morningness? You may be able to change that...
7 Steps to Creating a Successful Online Business
Running a business online today is the modern thing for most entrepreneurs, and with 7 steps like these, you can run one, too. But why? Maybe it's the passive income, or the ability to fulfill yourself by earning money doing what you love.
How We Can Encourage More Female Entrepreneurship
Over 50% of consumers on the internet are women... that gives [female entrepreneurs] a huge competitive advantage. But stuff like their natural fear of taking risks is holding them back. How can we change this?
You're No Steve Jobs, So Look Before You Leap
"Iterate, iterate, iterate." If you don't know what that word means, find out now! That's what entrepreneur Wadhwa says CampfireLabs.com is doing. He predicts that they have "a better than average chance of becoming a Zynga or Facebook."
10 Ways the Next 10 Years Are Going To Be Mind-Blowing
We made it through the first decade of the 21st century alive, let's hope we can do it again, because soon you may not need to change out of your clothes into a bathing suit to swim. In fact, your car might have tiny solar panels all over it as you drive to work. And if you go on vacation, you might be staying in a resort that moves.
Google's Schmidt Undaunted by Apple or Facebook
Google has some things to clear up. And from Schmidt's standpoint, Google seems very confident and not worried by innovations and pressure coming from Apple and Facebook.



Stay tuned till next Sunday, or let us share news, events, articles with you in real time!
  • You should connect with us on facebook, here.
  • We're also on twitter, as @OfficeDivvy. Please say hi.

5 Select Articles on Social Media...


Here's a compilation of select articles and blog posts on Social Media which came on our radar recently..

We typically share much on twitter and facebook, but the particular news, articles, and blog posts that really stand out, we compile them here on our blog every Sunday.

52 Cool Facts About Social Media
Danny Brown compiles 52 facts (one fact per week of the year) on facebook, twitter, linkedin, YouTube, and Blogging.  Facts such as "90% of Internet users know at least one social network" or "The average social user has 195 friends."
Facebook Games: Office Wars
Nope, we're in no way, shape or form fans of Facebook games. But this one sounds really funny, so we thought it's worth sharing.
How Facebook will take over the world
Facebook will announce its 500 millionth user any day now, but to reach one billion users the firm needs to expand in developing markets. by Jemima Kiss of Guardian.
Man Claims to Own 84% of Facebook
A man with a contract claiming at least 50% of Facebook. Read how he did it with just $1,000.
How to Optimize Your Site for SEO
Here are some tasks that need to be completed for great Search Engine Optimization. In fact, some of them are pretty simple...





Stay tuned till next Sunday, or let us share news, events, articles with you in real time!
  • You should connect with us on facebook, here.
  • We're also on twitter, as @OfficeDivvy. Please say hi.

Twitter User Names of Coworking Spaces and Space Owners

Very cool list of twitter accounts of people and spaces involved in Coworking.

You know to find us on twitter under @OfficeDivvy, but this list is great to connect with other co-working folks:
Coworking.pbworks.com/Twitter


Coworking Rocks!



Tuesday, July 13, 2010

This is why Twitter Direct Messages (DM) are a nuisance...

In an earlier blog post titled "3 Biggest Problems with Twitter are…" I wrote an open letter to twitter (coincidentally on their 2nd birthday): 
Twitter, we know you are not perfect. You have your shortcomings. We all do. If you are picking some things to work on here’s number 2:
Direct Message: Auto Respond
We often times would have to disregard our DM box, as it was full of so many “Thanks for following – join us at 8am Monday through…." kind of nonsense. Plus the phishing, and hacked accounts through DM.

In the same blog post, I also discussed "Absentee Tweeting" as a big problem.

Now, look at this Twitter DM we received:


One picture says a thousand words.  Do I need to say more?

This fellow is not only sending our @OfficeDivvy twitter account an unsolicited, unnecessary (and really useless) auto-DM, but he isn't even able to automate it properly, with the %DISPLAYNAME%  field still showing as a field.

Why inconveniencing others is still allowed on twitter?  The current twitter DM-module enables and empowers that.  If some folks don't have common-sense or any courtesy; why do we not have a twitter-option to shot-down the DM module completely, or create filters to block certain DMs?  

Well, I must admit I actually have a system.  Do you know how I deal with unnecessary, auto, and spam DM?  I unfollow the person immediately!  We show zero tolerance for this kind of users, as such DMs show we're not a match, and there is no need to sweat it...

Are you burdened by "DM" in similar or different ways?  Please share your thoughts...



Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

Sunday, July 11, 2010

7 Select Articles on Startups, Entrepreneurship, Small Business, and Technology


Here's a compilation of select articles and blog posts on Startup, Entrepreneur, and Small Business matters.

We typically share original content as well as good finds on twitter and facebook, but those particular news, articles, and blog posts that really stand out, we compile them here on our blog every Sunday...

How to Name Your Startup
Naming your company can be challenging and time consuming. Here are 10 tips from Ross Kimbarovsky, co-founder of crowdSPRING, published on Tech Cocktail.

5 Lessons from Startup Pitches
This is an excellent read if you're planning on every starting a new Startup, or going after VC or Angel money.  By Jason Cohen, the founder of Smart Bear Software.
US Job Growth Entirely Driven by Startups
New firms add an average of 3 million jobs in their first year, while older companies lose 1 million jobs annually. Kauffman Foundation of Entrepreneurship says: "When it comes to U.S. job growth, Startup companies aren’t everything. They’re the only thing."
Why Startups Fail?
New ventures have only a 50% chance of making it through the first five years. Many would-be moguls just aren't prepared for the reality of running their own businesses. by Lisa Smith of Investopia.
8 Questions to Ask Before Building a Business
Are you thinking of starting a new web business? Before you start, ask yourself the following eight questions. The advantage of this is that you can quickly see if the idea you’re going to throw your money and soul into is likely to work.
S.B.A. Lending Plunged in June
With the expiration of stimulus  provisions that made Small Business Administration loans more attractive to borrowers and lenders (and with efforts to renew the those provisions stalled  in Congress), SBA-backed lending all but collapsed in June. (New York Times)
Sam's Club to Offer Small Business Loans
Associated Press reported that Sam's Club said Tuesday it will offer loans of up to $25,000 to its small business members.


Hope you enjoyed the above links.  Stay tuned till next Sunday, or let us share news, events, articles with you in real time
  • You should connect with us on facebook, here
  • We're also on twitter, as @OfficeDivvy. Please say hi.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Job Growth in the U.S. Driven Entirely by Startups!

Job Growth in U.S. Driven Entirely by Startups, according to the findings from the Kauffman Foundation Study that is. 
" New firms add an average of 3 million jobs in their first year, while older companies lose 1 million jobs annually. "

When it comes to U.S. job growth, Startup companies aren’t everything. They’re the only thing.

It’s well understood that existing companies of all sizes constantly create – and destroy – jobs. Conventional wisdom, then, might suppose that annual net job gain is positive at these companies. A study released by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, however, shows that this rarely is the case. In fact, net job growth occurs in the U.S. economy only through startup firms.

The new study, The Importance of Startups in Job Creation and Job Destruction (PDF), bases its findings on the Business Dynamics Statistics, a U.S. government dataset compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau. The BDS series tracks the annual number of new businesses (startups and new locations) from 1977 to 2005, and defines startups as firms younger than one year old.

The study reveals that, both on average and for all but seven years between 1977 and 2005, existing firms are net job destroyers, losing 1 million jobs net combined per year.

By contrast, in their first year, new firms add an average of 3 million jobs.

Further, the study shows, job growth patterns at both startups and existing firms are pro-cyclical, although existing firms have much more cyclical variance. Most notably, during recessionary years, job creation at startups remains stable, while net job losses at existing firms are highly sensitive to the business cycle.

These findings imply that America should be thinking differently about the standard employment policy paradigm,” said Robert E. Litan, vice president of Research and Policy at the Kauffman Foundation. “Policymakers tend to focus on changes in the national or state unemployment rate, or on layoffs by existing companies. But the data from this report suggest that growth would be best boosted by supporting startup firms.

Because startups that develop organically are almost solely the drivers of job growth, job-creation policies aimed at luring larger, established employers will inevitably fail, said the study’s author, Tim Kane, Kauffman Foundation senior fellow in Research and Policy. Such city and state policies are doomed not only because they are zero-sum, but because they are based in unrealistic employment growth models.

And it’s not just net job creation that startups dominate. While older firms lose more jobs than they create, those gross flows decline as firms age. On average, one-year-old firms create nearly one million jobs, while ten-year-old firms generate 300,000. The notion that firms bulk up as they age is, in the aggregate, not supported by data.


Note: This post is based on the July 7 Press Release by Kauffman Foundation
Download: The Importance of Startups in Job Creation and Job Destruction (PDF)

Monday, July 5, 2010

New Hootsuite Has "Klout"

The popular social media tool to manage Twitter and Facebook status updates, Hootsuite, released their newest version: Hootsuite 5.0.  There were some hiccups at first, folks (including us) did not like the new RT format being chosen as a default.  Hootsuite corrected the problem relatively fast, giving the users the option to choose from the new or the old-school RT format. 

One interesting feature is "Klout" with twitter-user scores based on Klout.com's klout-scores, which is the influence metric. It measures overall influence through 25 variables broken into three categories; True Reach, Amplification Score and Network Score.

Klout tracks the impact of the user's opinions, links and recommendations across their social graph. It collects data about the content one creates, how people interact with that content and the size and composition of one's network.

From there, the tool analyzes the data to find indicators of influence and then provides the user with innovative tools to interact with and interpret the data.

Good job Hootsuite!  Well done...

What tool do you use to manage your twitter account(s)?  Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Seesmic, or others?


Saturday, July 3, 2010

NWC2.0 -- New Work City 2.0

Here are two emails came through from the Coworking Group with exciting news for New York City based New Work City, but also highlighting interesting approaches to funding for coworking spaces, the coworking world (coworkers, space owners, and those who plan to have their space) will enjoy reading about:

The first email is from Alex Hillman, a co-founder of Philadelphia-based coworking space, Independence Hall (aka IndyHall). And the second email is from Tony Bacigalupo, the owner of New Work City (aka NWC) in Manhattan.

Here we go:



Alex Hillman  |  Jul 02 10:15AM -0400


For those who haven't heard, New Work City (our coworking friends in Manhattan) have announced a big move: Tony Bacigalupo's Blog Post

Manhattan has some of the most challenging real estate economics in our country and Tony has done a good job of keeping a bootstrap mindset and always coming up with creative ways to overcome the challenge while keeping their growth and approach organic.

Their latest move includes not only the usual high costs associated with space in NYC, but renovation costs as well. I was impressed by one approach they took to financing their move and build-out:
Darrell Silver's Blog Post

In short, and Tony can feel free to correct me here, one of the long time members/supporters they have invested cash in return for ownership of a few memberships...memberships that subsidize his company's costs of having a workspace in Manhattan. When New Work City can afford to (it sounds like there is a goal of one year), they will buy those memberships back from Darrell.
"I don't know the details of this deal beyond what I've read on Darrell's blog."


I don't know the details of this deal beyond what I've read on Darrell's blog, and Tony has a lot on his plate with opening a new location in 2 months, but I was particularly impressed with the creative approach to
financing and thought that instead of just ask him for more info on my own time, he could share with all of us at once. :)

When IndyHall performed its similar growth/move last year, we also raised money from within our membership in the form of a loan. This isn't completely dissimilar, but the tone of the exchange is more organized and mutually beneficial, I almost wish we'd thought of it ourselves!

The main reinforcing concept that I see here are mutual benefit of having members bought in on a much deeper level than renting desks.

Alex
indyhall.org
coworking in philadelphia

* * *



Tony Bacigalupo | Jul 02 08:37PM -0400


Alex, thanks for bringing this up... I figured someone would beat me to spilling the beans about our new space on here :)

NYC is indeed a very difficult place to build a coworking space while keeping it truly community-run. Point of fact, many of the proto-coworking spots that have appeared in NYC in the past few years have been directly or indirectly tied to external interests.

My goal with NWC was to keep us truly independent and self-sustaining.

The deal in our new space was the closest we were ever going to get to a perfect storm of all the right factors: location, price, size, environment, timing, and, most importantly, a landlord who was on board with what we're doing.

The special deal you're referring to was Darrell's idea, and it was a really smart one (he's a really really smart dude). It works out really well for both of us-- he saves a bunch of money for his startup in the form of free
memberships, while we get the benefit of both a critical infusion of early cash as well as a group of great guys to help fill up our big new space.

By the time their free occupancy starts to really hurt our bottom line, we'll be generating enough cash flow to start paying off the loan-- and by then, Darrell and his team would have gotten enough benefit to justify the
risk of the loan.

Darrell also, of course, wants to support us, and he knows that the economics of starting up a coworking space in NYC is damn near impossible if you don't have some help.

So his help was the critical piece I needed to feel comfortable signing the lease.

That being said, we still have a very, very long way to go. To pay for what will be a very significant amount of construction and outfitting, we are going to have to pull out all the stops.

My aim is to go for the most community-reinforcing routes first. We'll be taking a lot of membership prepayment (two of my members have already paid for six and twelve months respectively, before I even started asking), that being the best money since it is sourced by the community itself and represents commitments on the part of the members.

Next up is loans from individuals who are willing to take a little risk to help make it all possible. They will be simple loans with low interest rates and long repayment terms; in other words, these are going to be loans from people who don't care so much about making a cash ROI as they do with helping us succeed.

Beyond that, I anticipate that we will still have a significant gap to close-- we're looking into sponsorships, partnered programming, auctioning off members' services, taking money for dares, and more.

I'm not going to lie, I've had my share of panic attacks about all this. But we hit a point at which it was clear that we were as close as we were ever going to get, and I decided that we were close enough that I could rely on rallying the community together to figure out how to get across the finish line.

So far, I've already been pleasantly surprised by the dedication and support of some of my close friends in the community. If we catch a few more breaks, we'll be there.

And then we're going to have something that never could have existed in NYC otherwise-- a true community center based on coworking. The impact we're going to have with this new space is going to be well worth the hard work and risk that are going into it.

We are the future, people.

Much more to come! Would love some help on creative fundraising ideas.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Nighthawk Solar to export Solar Lights to Pakistan & Afghanistan

Office Divvy ™ provides co-location facilities and outsourced operations to Startups, Entrepreneurs, and Small Business.  In a ceremony on June 22, 2010, Office Divvy ™ member Nighthawk Marketing (the maker of the Nighhawk Solar Light) assigned representation and distribution to Karachi-based Equip International for solar light distribution in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The signing ceremony took place in Palm Coast, FL.  Nighthawk Solar co-founder Tim Howard, and Equip International representative Anjum Ahmad were accompanied by press, select business-people, and government and economic-organization leaders including,
  • Palm Coast Mayor, Jon Netts
  • Vice Mayor and Councilwoman, Mary DiStefano
  • Councilman, Holsey Moorman
  • Councilman, Frank Meeker
  • Councilman, Bill Lewis
  • Palm Coast City Manager, James Landon
  • President of Flagler County Chamber of Commerce, Doug Baxter
  • Enterprise Flagler Director, Greg Rawls
  • Palm Coast Economic Development Team Leader, Beau Falgout
  • Office Divvy co-founders, Lisa Ekinci, Sim Taing, and Ky Ekinci
Here's a slide-show from the event:



_______________________________________

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg: "Email is going away!"

Facebook's Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg says "email is going away."

Ms. Sandberg says only 11% of teenagers today email daily, and that the notion "I can't imagine life without email" is going away:




Huffington Post ran a survey based on this speech. It seems most folks do not agree that the email is going away anytime soon. Here's a capture of the survey results as of June 17th:



What do you think?

Is email going away anytime soon?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Foursquare - A Smartphone Game that's good for Business

I'll tell you from get go, that I like Foursquare...  What is Four Square?  It's an adorable geo-location based game, exclusively played through smart-phones, in real life, with real people, involving real locations and venues. 

When you actually visit a real venue (bar, restaurant, hotel, club, conference center etc.) you pop up your smartphone, and "check in" using Foursquare, indicating that you are at that establishment at that given time.  It broadcasts your location to other users you're connected with on foursquare, and you can even set it up to send the announcement to your facebook and twitter friends.

Foursquare serves as a game, pairing virtual rewards with real activities. Users earn badges as they visit different spots. When you visit one location enough times you become the Mayor.

I proudly hold the mayorship of 17 places in Palm Coast. That's the advantage of being on 4 Square in a small town, there is little competition. :)  By the way, if you are on Foursquare, you can find me and befriend me: Ky on Foursquare

Now, let's get to the real meat here, which is Business! Foursquare is good for business.  As a business owner, when people check in at your venue you're getting a free visibility out there = Free Marketing!  You can also add specials, even broadcast messages to those who check in at neighboring establishments.

Here is an example: The other day I was at the Taco Bell in Palm Coast, at the drive-through line.  I visited twice before the week prior, and became the Mayor of Taco Bell.  When I grabbed my Blackberry to check in at Taco Bell on Foursquare, I noticed the following message, alerting me that there is a "Special Nearby" other than where I was, that is a Taco Bell.


When I clicked on it, I saw this:


Basically, Starbucks in Palm Coast, FL was humoring me for being the Mayor of Taco Bell, and offering $1 off a Frappuccino. Now if you ask me, the offer is not good enough, and Starbucks, a giant corporation, is obviously running a centralized campaign that include all Starbucks locations on Foursquare because I've seen this elsewhere also.

But think of it from the standpoint of a small business owner, how powerful a small business can be on foursquare. I'll even give you examples if you're familiar with Palm Coast, FL:
  • Life Thyme Cafe or Dominic's Deli at City Walk, 
  • Mezzaluna in European Village,
  • Jim's Hot Dog Cart located at Sears parking lot 
These are the establishments in more or less the same neighborhood that can dominate the Foursquare-landscape with specials, and do well, too.

There is so much opportunity for small business owners to use Social Media and make real connections, acquire real customers, and create loyalty.  Foursquare is just one social media & networking application, but it can be a tremendous platform for Small Business, especially if you own a cafe, restaurant, bar or club type of venue...

* * *

On a side note, today (June 16, 2010) there are 350 plus foursquare meetups taking place in over 60 countries with thousands of people attending.  Office Divvy ™  is hosting a Foursquare Meetup in Palm Coast between 5:30 PM and 7 PM.


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Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Social Media = Positive ROI

Not many words needed here:

Sunday, June 13, 2010

America Loves Small Business!

"Small business" love of Americans is clear in these Gallup poll results -- 95% of Americans have a positive image of Small Business!





The love is shared both by Republicans and Democrats:




It doesn't matter if you're a conservative, moderate, or liberal, you still love Small Business:




So, it's safe to say:




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Resources:

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Twitter Search Now Reads URLs behind Shortened Links

Twitter Search is improving quite a bit.  It's now able to read the URL behind the shortened link from both bit.ly and Hootsuite's ow.ly.

See the example below...

In two of my tweets there are no keywords or phrases that match "Flagler County."   However, the URL in both links is pointing to http://palm-coast-flagler-county-florida.blogspot.com/ and the twitter search is able to pickup the "Flagler-County" portion of the URL from behind the shortened links:


Next time you're searching something on twitter if the results do not contain the keywords or the phrases you're searching for, don't be surprised; it's not a miracle, it's just that twitter search is adding value by looking at the actual URL. :)

For those who are new to twitter (and for those who are not on twitter), how do you search twitter?  There are many ways, but you can start with using the twitter search engine at http://search.twitter.com

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Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Saturday, June 12, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook
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Friday, June 4, 2010

What motivates your employees -- Money? Think again!

In this lively "RSA Animate" episode, adapted from Dan Pink's talk at the RSA, the hidden truths behind what really motivates us at home and in the workplace gets illustrated...

This is a must watch (or your money back):



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Resources:

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

How to Hide/Unhide Your Friends' Farmvile Updates on facebook

Few days ago I wrote a blog post titled, "How to Hide Friends' Annoying Farmville Updates from Facebook" and since then at least a dozen people asked me if I could do a quick video on that showing how that works.

Games like Farmville seem to intrude your fleeting facebook wall by default, showing status updates by your friends on your timeline with automatic updates as your friends play the game.

So here is how to disable these game updates, not just for Farmville but for the rest of them, from appearing on your facebook timeline:



I hope this helps. :)

By the way, we're doing a series of twitter and facebook workshops in Palm Coast. If you're anywhere in Flagler or Volusia County (Flagler Beach, Daytona, Ormond Beach etc) and plan on using facebook or twitter for professional and personal branding, you might want to attend these small-group workshops: www.OfficeDivvy.com/Workshop



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Related Posts:



Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Monday, May 31, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook



Monday, May 31, 2010

How to Remove the Google Blogger Navigation Bar from Your Blog

Do you find the Blogspot navigation bar annoying? If you blog on Google's Blogger platform, chances are, you have asked yourself how you could get rid of that. It's actually as simple as dropping some short code to your style-sheets.

Here's a detailed video I put-together with step by step instructions to remove the navbar from Blogspot:




Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Monday, May 31, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook






Sunday, May 30, 2010

Office Divvy Daily Twitter from Palm Coast & Flagler County

  • 14:45 How to Hide Friends' Annoying Farmville Updates from Facebook in Two Easy Steps: bit.ly/bZMWNn #
  • 14:46 @myapptsetter ..interesting service! Let's connect, would like to understand how what your service offering packages are. #
  • 14:50 @ormondseafood @EPSFoamPro @FLNativeMom ..hello neighbors, nice to connect with you: bit.ly/twttrfollow #
  • 14:52 "Palm Coast with Julie" introduced: bit.ly/a1MAyy | ...did you connect with her on facebook yet? facebook.com/PalmCoastJulie #
  • 17:20 From WhiteNoise to LinkedIn, Top 10 iPhone (and iPad) apps for the busy, work-at-home moms: ow.ly/1RRuo | #Mompreneur #
  • 17:38 Good find Steve! disq.us/do86x #
  • 21:34 "Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one." ~ Bill Gates .... ow.ly/1RTz5 #
  • 23:46 13 Truths About Social Media Measurement: ow.ly/1RVeu by @AmberCadabra #
Connect with Office Divvy on twitter @OfficeDivvy, or "like" us on facebook, @OfficeDivvy... Much thanks for listening...

How to Hide Friends' Annoying Farmville Updates from Facebook

If you are a Farmville lover, this post is probably not for you...

But if you are one of the 6 Million+ fans on the "I dont care about your farm, or your fish, or your park, or your mafia!!!" facebook page, you'll probably be interested in this "facebook how to tips" to hide your friends' annoying game and application feeds from appearing on your facebook timeline.

Did you know that you actually are only two clicks away to have a peace of mind, and to stop the annoying application updates? Here's how:

Step 1
Hover your cursor over the upper right corner of your friend's farmville accomplishment (sorry to be sarcastic), and a "Hide" button will appear. It will look like this:




Step 2
Click on the "Hide" button, and two more buttons will appear. First one is to hide the actual friend (and his or her entire status updates from your timeline), and the second one is hide the application's automatic updates from your news feed / facebook timeline. It will look like this:



Click on the latter, and it will prevent all stories from that particular application from appearing on your home page regardless of which friend the update is coming from.

Now take a deep breath, exhale, and relax. You're freed from the annoying application updates!

Remember, Farmville is a very common one, but others are into Mafia Wars, Country Life, Family Feud, Fishville (I made that up, is there a fishville?). You will need to repeat the process for each additional application as the updates appear.

Now what do you do if you change your mind and want to get back the updates? That's a whole another blog post, and I will save it until I actually see people commenting on and requesting tips for how to unhide and get back the Farmville updates. :)

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Related Posts:



Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Sunday, May 30, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Entrepreneur advice by Kauffman Foundation's Bo Fishback

"Find a foothold and go for it" says Bo Fishback of the Kauffman Foundation in this quick interview with Wall Street Journal Small Business Editor, Colleen DeBaise:

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Palm Coast featured in Fortune Magazine: 5 Great Places to Retire

Story on CNNmoney.com and Fortune Magazine features Palm Coast among the "5 Great Places to Retire." The story mentions the average home price at about $144,000, and says that there are 230 Blue Skys per year...

Here's the 5 Great Places to Retire:
  1. Napa, California
  2. Ann Arbor, MI
  3. San Antonio, TX
  4. Greenville, SC
  5. Palm Coast, FL



Hurray for PalmCoast!

Though not near retirement, we at Office Divvy love living and doing business here...

To read the original story, click here.


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PS: Are you on the Palm Coast, FL Facebook page? You should be!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Another facebook-style improvement from LinkedIn -- The "Like" Button

Uh-huh, LinkedIn continues to improve and make moves towards engagement right on LinkedIn!

Recently Linked In allowed user-comments for status updates, which was a good move. Now the web2.0 features continue: LinkedIn now added a "like" button for a connection's status update.

So what if facebook coined the "like" terminology, it's okay! This is all in the right direction...

It's nice to increase engagement right on LinkedIn's own platform!



We "like" the new Linkedin "Like" button addition... Do you?




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Other LinkedIn Related Blog Posts:



Orlando Company CEO is the SBA National Small Business Person of the Year!

A wholehearted congratulations to Waymon Armstrong and Engineering & Computer Simulations (ECS) from the Office Divvy Team in Palm Coast, FL! Kudos! Well Done!..

* * *

Waymon Armstrong
, the owner of a small business that uses computer simulations to help government and private sector clients prepare for and respond to natural disasters, medical emergencies and combat, was today named National Small Business Person of the Year by Karen Mills, Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

SBA Administrator Mills made the announcement during ceremonies at SBA’s celebration of National Small Business Week 2010:
Waymon Armstrong is a perfect example of the innovation, inspiration and determination that exemplify America’s most successful entrepreneurs. He believed in his brainchild to the point where he deferred his own salary for three years to keep it afloat. When layoffs loomed for his staff after 9/11, their loyalty and belief in the company was so great that they were willing to work without pay for four months. Waymon’s commitment to his employees and to his business – Engineering & Computer Simulations, Inc. – demonstrates the qualities that make small businesses such a powerful force for job creation in the American economy and in their local communities. It’s the same qualities that will lead us to economic recovery. We are especially proud that his company benefited from two grants under SBA’s Small Business Innovation and Research Program. I applaud Waymon, and all of the state small business persons of the year who are here today. We are all grateful for their contributions to our economy.
Armstrong, the top winner, started Engineering & Computer Simulations (ECS) in 1997. Today it is one of Inc. Magazine’s 500 fastest growing private companies in America. Armstrong and ECS use cutting edge technology to help government and private clients prepare for natural disasters, medical emergencies, and times of war.

ECS is a provider of game-based simulation systems and interactive performance assessment tools that train emergency medical personnel and emergency management teams from different jurisdictions to cooperate in the event of a natural disaster, and simulation training programs that teach unmanned vehicle operational personnel procedures to launch and operate unmanned vehicles.

The ECS engineering team brings together an experienced staff that values innovation and creativity while focusing on customers’ needs. Today, ECS employs 45 people, and recruits from the central Florida talent pool. ECS doubled its revenues in 2008. The company has seen a 640 percent sales growth over the past three years. The loyalty of his staff was rewarded with generous benefits: full insurance, personal time off, every other Friday off, monthly catered appreciation lunches, bonus and profit-sharing plans, and on-site massage therapy.

Again, kudos to Waymon and the ECS team, well done!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Overnight Success Does Exist! .... Not!

"Nobody is an overnight success," says David Heinemeier Hansson, partner at 37signals and developer of the Web platform Ruby on Rails, during his lecture at the Stanford's Technology Venture Program.

Whenever a product or company suddenly seems to have popped up out of nowhere, it usually arrives out of 10 years worth of work. He points out that 37signals and Basecamp took just this length of time to become a success.

"Accelerated growth is a charade," Heinemeier Hansson further stresses. It takes time to develop a sustainable, profitable company.

In the heart of Heinemeier Hansson's statement is the choice (or the principle) of whether or not to turn to venture capital for accelerated growth, or to grow organically and fund through bootstrapping, family funds, Angel Investors, or other funding options.

I enjoyed this video from Stanford's Entrepreneurship Corner, and hope you will enjoy it, too.



As we are considering some ideas to further expand Office Divvy services with a formula to provide funding to tech startups in Palm Coast and Daytona Beach (and elsewhere in Flagler and Volusia County landscape) --i.e. Angel Investing, Startup Incubation Program etc.; I will make sure that our network of Angel Investors as well as those startup founders seeking funding and angel investment will be reminded of Heinemeier Hansson's thoughts.


Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook

Friday, May 21, 2010

Why does Microsoft Outlook still ignore Social Media Contacts?

What does a Solopreneur, Solo-practitioner, Freelancer, or Small Business Owner use nowadays to handle their Contact Management and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) needs?

It's safe to say that once predominant desktop applications, such as Sage's ACT Software, are leaving the scene and Cloud CRM (such as SalesForce, ZOHO, LongJump and others) are now dominating the marketplace.

Microsoft's Outlook however remains a reliable player for many folks as a convenient tool for consolidating emails, tasks management, scheduling (calendar), and contact management.

I have to admit that I use Outlook, and I actually like it. Having it on my laptop makes it pretty mobile, and I can easily sync my calendar, tasks, and contacts to my blackberry; or vice versa. Though I wonder how long can Outlook hang in there still allowing only one single web-address field per contact, and without proper fields allocated for the various web addresses of contacts (such as blogs, and social media links including twitter, facebook, linkedin etc).



In an ideal world, Outlook should be able to allow for twitter, facebook, linkedin, and blog fields for contacts; and they can even take it one step further such as building-in a blog's most recent RSS feeds or a contact's most recent tweets and linkedin status updates.

How wonderful would it be to have that kind of visibility/snapshot to what my contact is up to that I'm about call!

PS: Even though I'm picking on Microsoft Outlook here, I have to be honest, and add that the other rising player in the market, Google Mail is not doing that much better when it comes to its address book, though google at least allows for additional "web addresses" per contact. | Even the CRM software I tried out there (SalesForce, Longjump, or ZOHO) is not that much better, they do not allow pre-configured fields for a blog, twitter feed, linkedin or facebook URL for contacts. Obviously you can configure some fields depending on your subscription. | Interestingly, it appears 37 Signals (the makers of Basecamp) gave more consideration for this kind of stuff in their new "Highrise" Cloud CRM, but based on the intro video that doesn't seem to exactly have all that I want, though certainly has the room to grow and scale to that kind of environment.



Ky Ekinci : Co-Founder Office Divvyposted by Ky Ekinci
Co-Founder, Office Divvy
Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Connect? Ky on Twitter | Office Divvy on Twitter | On Facebook