Birth of a Startup

Latest posts by Joel Welsh (see all)

I’ve been the StartupNation chief community officer for four years. That’s four years of day after day hanging around eager entrepreneurs, and drinking in the most phenomenal information on the planet to learn about starting and growing a small business. It’s been a PhD in Entrepreneurship under the tutelage of Jeff and Rich Sloan, chief startupologists of StartupNation, and the thousands of entrepreneurs in the StartupNation community who provide inspiration, wisdom, strategies, best practices, wacky ideas that are way smarter than conventional ones, and a network of relationships that is all powerful in the world of starting a small business. And all of this came after 19 years of starting & running my own small business, a recruiting firm.

I am now embarking on the next chapter of my entrepreneurial journey, and I’m going to take you along with me for the ride. I am the CEO of a brand new startup company called Showcase U. Co-founders Jake Chapman & Chad Durbin read the book “StartupNation: Open For Business” and contacted us at StartupNation over 2 years ago. I have been working behind the scenes since then with Jake & Chad, and we just launched this past weekend. Showcase U gives high school student athletes a way to showcase themselves so that they can increase their opportunity to be recruited by college coaches and pro scouts.

In this blog going forward, starting today, I am going to share the key decisions involved in starting up Showcase U from scratch and launching the website and the daily battle to build and grow the business. You’ll hear from me a couple times each week as the challenges and strategies are fresh and real. I’ll come to you with answers for sure, but I’ll also be sharing the “in the trenches” issues as they are happening before we reach final conclusions. You may have your own insights to share and I welcome them with open arms here in the blog comments.

OK, that’s all for today. Oh wait … Number 1 on my Showcase U Action List today is “StartupNation Marketing”. The opportunity to share and cross-promote with other websites is a powerful grassroots marketing tactic and is a cornerstone of the Showcase U marketing strategy. The way to make those partnering opportunities happen is the manner in which you build relationships over time. On you’ll see that we already have a team of bloggers who are contributing fresh content that is appropriate for the Showcase U audience. We have taken great care to ensure that these relationships are Win/Win for both parties, and a terrific way to begin a partnering relationship is by sharing content back and forth. It’s a strategy that has worked exceptionally well here at StartupNation and we are emulating it at Showcase U. The hosting site gets fresh content which aids in search engine optimization, and the guest bloggers grow their brand with an opportunity to link from an external website to their own, which also aids in SEO.

Talk to you again soon! I’m still the StartupNation chief community officer as well as the CEO of Showcase U. Yes, life is wonderfully full!! I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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