The Traklight Blog

Explore the world of intangible assets and IP with guest blogs, business owner interviews, and more.

Startup Myth #1 - Paperwork Is For After We Go To Market

Like Canadian rock legends Bachman-Turner Overdrive, entrepreneurs love “taking care of business”.  But handling all of the tasks related to running a business can be overwhelming, and entrepreneurs don’t have the option of “playing something from the new album,” so to speak.  They have to remain focused and diligent, and avoid falling into the trap of buying into common misconceptions and ignoring potential risks. There are plenty of startup myths that entrepreneurs fall prey to, but like the best shows from your favorite rockers, we’re sticking to the classics. Today's feature is the first part in a ten-part series.

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Need Venture Capital? IP Assets Are Critical.

If you’re familiar with venture capital, then you probably know how hard it is to transform an idea into a profitable and successful project. This is because new ideas, regardless of how promising they are, are associated with all kinds of risks that must be thoroughly monitored at all times to avoid losing the money invested.

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Stay Sane and Productive in a Startup Environment

Things can be hectic in the world of startups and small business. Trying to meet a myriad of demands with limited resources can be stressful, even overwhelming at times. And sometimes it's easy to be frustrated when the end result isn't quite what you hoped it might be. At times like these, it can be helpful to step back and examine the ways that you might be able to improve the way you're doing things; after all, if you trust the process, the results will come. Here are a few steps that I've found helpful in dealing with everyday pressures.

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5 Biggest Mistakes Companies Make When Starting Up

As we have written about before, for many businesses, especially startups, intellectual property (IP) is their most valuable asset. If your company has created a unique product, technology, or service, protecting the intellectual property you have developed is paramount to your success. Both the company's founders and investors must ensure all IP is first identified and then protected through agreements and registration, while also avoiding infringing on the intellectual property of third parties.

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The Worst IP Mistakes Made in 2014, Part 1

I have been very fortunate in 2014 to meet hundreds of entrepreneurs and small business owners across the US, and even spend some time chatting on Skype with overseas early stage companies.

In the spirit of holiday lists and lessons learned, this is the first of three posts on the worst intellectual property (IP) mistakes I have seen made in 2014. Of course there is a tie to IP and money or valuation of the venture.

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Confessions of a Business Owner | 3 Lessons Learned in 2014

Charles Dickens hit the nail on the head when he said, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." That quote truly sums up Traklight's 2014, as we had some amazing successes as well as some stunning setbacks. But that is the nature of an early growth company; it’s a rollercoaster ride. Fellow business owners, here are my top three lessons learned from this past year. May your 2015 be increasingly prosperous!

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3 Intellectual Property Tips for Your Startup

Sometimes if you hear something enough, you'll commit it to memory. And when it comes to your business, there are a lot of things you need to remember to keep straight. In the past, Mary Juetten, Traklight Founder and CEO, has written extensively about intangible assets, intellectual property (IP), and raising money for your startup. We wanted to recap some key points from some of her most popular Forbes contribution articles to help you get the investments you need for your startup. Follow these these intellectual property tips from Mary:

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Forbes Update: Equity Crowdfunding Still in a Holding Pattern

 *This Forbes update will be postponed. Check back later for the updated link or follow Mary on Forbes to be notified of her newest posts. Sorry for any inconvenience!* 

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series shared an interview with Unified Patents and what they're doing to stop Non-Practicing Entities from hurting your business. Check back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!


Mary has spoken in the past about the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. But this time, she interviews the executives of Crowdfund Intermediary Regulatory Association (CFIRA), two months before the end of 2014 and just in time for the annual Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Government-Business Forum on Small Business Capital Formation and a public CFIRA meeting.

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Startups Are Crucial to Net Job Growth in the US

When you hear about job growth in the US economy, you might attribute that to large corporations removing their hiring freezes or small businesses growing their employee base. You might be surprised to know though, that there is another factor that has a significant role in the job growth of the US economy: startups. 

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Forbes Update: Combat Your Fear of Non-Practicing Entities

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series was a recap of the CodeX Demo Event on Legal Technology, which featured top legal tech company founders' perspectives on the growing industry. Check back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!

Going with a Halloween theme, this week Mary covers the topic of Non-Practicing Entities (NPE's), also known in the world of intellectual property as "patent trolls." These trolls strike fear in business owners because of the financial burden of litigation and the potential to wipe out business' valuation. NPE's buy patents, and use their claim on overly vague patents to pursue legal action against businesses with the intent of winning a settlement. These NPE's never actually attempt to use the patent to develop their own product, hence the name Non-Practicing Entity. Their whole business model is based on abusing the legal system. 

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Forbes Update: CodeX Demo Event on Legal Technology

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series was an Interview with Digital Agency ONE400 on how to start small and have a big impact with your business. Check back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!

If you're a regular Traklight blog reader, you may be wondering why we didn't have our Forbes blog update for you yesterday. Neverfear! It was well worth the wait: We are officially announcing an existing new collaborative project that's been dubbed, The Legal Tech Toolkit (LTTK). We will continually be adding to this resourceful list of legal tech companies and intend for it to help you build your legal business.

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Xerox, Monopoly, & Pepsi: A Motivational History Lesson for Inventors

This is a guest blog by Paul Niemann that was originally published on MarketLaunchers.com, a resource for inventors to build their own web page. Plus, it can be seen by companies who search MarketLaunchers.com’s invention database for new products.  


Why were Xerox, Monopoly and Pepsi initially considered failures?

“I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.”  

Chester Carlson, Charles Darrow, and Caleb Bradham. You might not recognize their names, but you know their products. And there’s a lesson in this story for every inventor…

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Forbes Update: Start Small and Have a Big Impact with Your Business

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series interviewed Fitlogic Founder and CEO Cricket Lee on her Entrepreneurial Journey of Being First to MarketCheck back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!


Mary Juetten's most recent Forbes post recounts her interview with Allen Rodriguez and Eva Hibnick, Co-Founders of ONE400, saw a need in the legal industry. They realized that law firms and legal tech startups could benefit from the impact of a well-functioning and attractive online brand marketing. During the interview, ONE400 commented on the problem that they're solving:"ONE400 uses its extensive experience in the digital space to create product and marketing solutions that allow law firms to make their services available online in a way that today’s consumers of legal services are demanding."

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You Don't Know What You Don't Know About Intellectual Property

In an effort to cover exactly the sort of content you've asked about, we've put together an initial list of a few topics regarding everything and anything intellectual property (IP). It's a list that we will continually add to and update, so if there's a topic that you see that doesn't have a link, stay tuned—we haven't written a post about it yet. But rest assured we will. Also, if you have anything regarding IP that you've been wanting to learn about, email our Digital Content Coordinator, Emily Ely, at eely@traklight.com. Thanks!

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Forbes Update: An Entrepreneurial Journey of Being First to Market

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series reviewed how important it is to Pay Attention to Innovation and IntangiblesCheck back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!


Image Courtesy: Cricket LeeWhen you're first to market, it can be more challenging to get others to understand and appreciate your idea. There's a lot of education of your audience involved. In Mary's latest post to Forbes, she interviews Cricket Lee, Founder and CEO of Fitlogic, "an inside fit brand licensable to any wholesale or retail brand." The algorithem she created will revolutionize the way the fashion industry sizes their products. So how did she do it? 

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Forbes Update: Pay Attention to Innovation and Intangibles

Last week's Traklight on Forbes series shared 7 Tips for Thought Leadership on a Startup BudgetCheck back every Thursday for more content. Thanks for reading!


 

When you're looking to increase the value of your company or startup to gain investor attention, one of the first things you should consider is how to create that value from the resources you already have or have already created. More than 80% of your business value sits in your innovation and intangibles.

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Webinar Recap: Taking the Plunge Into Entrepreneurship

Jennifer Hill of SixtyVocab recently presented her webinar "Taking the Plunge Into Entrepreneurship: How to Dive in Intelligently." For those who weren't able to watch the live version, we have the recording and slides available below. Note: While this is a good overview of Jennifer's presentation, we recommend you read the slides and especially listen to the recorded presentation for a better understanding. 

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