​Top 5 ways to make your business more profitable

Operating a business in the innovative, diverse and rapidly growing city of Austin has tremendous opportunities. It’s also fiercely competitive.
For your business to succeed and stand out among the crowd, it requires constant attention to your business plan, partners and profitability.
Here are the top five ways to make your business more profitable:
1. Location, location, location
For your business to be a progressive and lucrative player in your industry, go where the growth is.
This is…

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Central Texas healthcare facilities face challenges

Austin is a health-conscious city. With miles of hiking and biking trails and a plethora of races for the weekend athlete, Austin has a smorgasbord of ways to stay healthy.
When proactive health services are needed or an unexpected health condition presents itself, there’s arguably no better place to be than Austin, Texas.
Local resources for medical, dental, veterinary and vision healthcare are abundant, and in just a few short months, the Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas…

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CTAN is the Most Active Angel Network in the Country

The Central Texas Angel Network, known as CTAN, is once again one of the most active angel investment networks in the country, by number of deals done in 2016, according to the 2016 HALO report.

The Angel Resource Institute, along with PitchBook, released the annual report last week.

In 2016, the most active angel groups included CTAN, Houston Angel Network, Hyde Park Angel Network, Alliance of Angels, Launchpad Venture Group, New York Angels, Blu Venture Investors, RTP Capital, Queen City Angels and St. Louis Arch Angels, according to the HALO report.

“CTAN’s position in the ARI national rankings reflects the intense time and effort our members commit to startups,” Claire England, Executive Director of Central Texas Angel Network, said in a news release. “Beyond increased funding levels, we saw record investor participation in 2016, with a 40% growth in the number of members writing checks.”

CTAN, a nonprofit organization with more than 160 accredited investor members, reported its members invested $14.2 million into 43 companies last year.

CTAN also made the HALO list of the most active angel networks in 2015.

Overall, in 2016, direct investments reported from U.S. angel groups more than doubled from 2015, according to the HALO report.

The report identified the trend of pre-money, early stage valuations declined from $4.6 million in 2015 to $3.7 million last year.

“The median round size for deals where angel groups co-invest with other investors in first round deals dropped to $950,000 from $1.6 million,” according to the report. “Median deal size from angel groups reached $127,000.”

In 2016, follow on funding accounted for 50.4 percent of deals funded by angel groups, according to the HALO report.

Texas, California, the Northeast and Southeast are the regions where new deals outpaced follow on rounds, according to Tony Knauss, co-chairman of the research committee for the Angel Resource Institute.

California accounted for 30 percent of all angel funded early-stage deals in 2016, followed by the Southeast, New York and the Northeast, all at about 10 percent, according to the report. Texas accounted for 5.4 percent of all angel deals.

Most of the deals were in the software industry with 34.3 percent, followed by healthcare with 17.3 percent, business to business with 13 percent, Internet and mobile at 11.2 percent and business to consumer at 10.3 percent.

Overall, male founders represented the bulk of funded deals with 58 percent led or founded by white male entrepreneurs, according to the HALO report, followed by 25 percent of deals led or founded by minority male entrepreneurs and 14 percent of deals led or founded by white female entrepreneurs and 3 percent of deals led or founded by minority female entrepreneurs, according to the report.

In Texas, investors wrote checks to male entrepreneurs 85 percent of the time, according to the report.

#URLinkedUp Austin technology Archives – SiliconHills http://www.siliconhillsnews.com/2017/04/29/ctan-is-the-most-active-angel-network-in-the-country/

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Help shape the City of Austin’s Smart City Roadmap

Last November, the Austin City Council passed a resolution requiring the creation of a Smart City Strategic Roadmap by the end of this May.

The goal, per the resolution, is to create a “transparent framework or roadmap for City services to catalyze joint understanding, prioritization, planning, and resources for connecting technological opportunities.”

Once completed, Austin’s Smart City Strategic Roadmap will set a frame for the foundation, policy, teams, services, technology, and business models for Austin’s smart city future. And you can impact the final product.

In order to identify gaps between where we are and where we need to go, the City needs your input by next Tuesday.

Please visit bit.ly/smartycityatx before Tuesday to share your thoughts, observations, and experiences around needs, gaps, and capabilities that we need to include in the Smart City Strategic Roadmap. Please also consider sharing bit.ly/smartycityatx with your networks so the City can hear from them, too.

After Tuesday’s comment period closes, the City will find patterns, consolidate insights, and synthesize your feedback into the Strategic Roadmap. Every participant will get an automated report that indicates how their input was utilized.

Again, visit bit.ly/smartycityatx by next Tuesday!

Austin Tech Alliance is a member-based nonprofit dedicated to promoting civic engagement in Austin’s tech sector. We focus on:

  • Educating the tech grassroots on issues that impact them
  • Advocating for tech-forward solutions to community challenges
  • Activating the tech community to speak up, participate, and vote

Help shape the City of Austin’s Smart City Roadmap was originally published in Austin Startups on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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Entrepreneur Louise Epstein Shares her Secrets to Success on Ideas to Invoices

Publisher and reporter with Silicon Hills News

In 1994, Louise Epstein launched Charge-Off Clearinghouse after serving on the Austin City Council.

“I went on a shameless search to find out what was happening in the world,” Epstein said.

There was an explosion in credit card debt and an explosion in debt that went unpaid, she said. That’s where she saw an opportunity.

She was one of the first women investment bankers in Texas and used her experience to create Charge-Off Clearinghouse, a distressed debt company that valued, purchased and sold $1 billion of charged-off credit cards. She led the company from 1997 to 2008.

Today, Epstein serves as managing director of the Innovation Center in the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

Epstein shares her secrets to success in this latest episode of the Ideas to Invoices podcast.

Epstein found a partner and convinced him to hire her for his debt collection agency. She ended up spinning her company out of that venture focused on buying and selling buy debt.

“Like most great ideas I latch on to, they are not mine,” Epstein said.

Her company was profitable from the first month.

One of the big lessons she learned in business, is it doesn’t matter if you’re right.

“Being right doesn’t mean you just made a sale. You can be right all the way to bankruptcy,” Epstein.

The key is to present something in a compelling way and to know how to sell, she said.

She built relationships with her customers on the phone.

“The way to sell is to know how to listen,” she said. “And when you listen, you really learn what your customer is looking for and what’s important to them…..you don’t build a relationship by talking.”

Great entrepreneurs must have an incredible amount of energy, the ability to prioritize and focus, Epstein said.

“If you want to be successful there is no work, life balance,” Epstein said.
“You have to have the ability to delay satisfaction, delay gratification, focus and commit.”

Her favorite thing about being an entrepreneur is creating something from nothing.
“I believe that when we create, we are doing what we are supposed to be doing,” Epstein said. “That’s how we are being the closest to the greatest we can be. The most elevated existence we can have.”

Epstein also advises entrepreneurs to learn first before launching their ventures.

“It really helps to know something to be successful,” Epstein said.

Getting paid to learn is called a job, she said.

“Get a job, learn, because you need to know more about so many things before you begin something,” she said.

Entrepreneurs are driven and not everyone can be an entrepreneur, Epstein said.

At the Innovation Center at the University of Texas at Austin, Epstein shares an office with Bob Metcalfe, the executive director, inventor of Ethernet, founding CEO of 3Com and professor of innovation at UT.

The Innovation Center is using startups as vehicles to change the world, Epstein said. At UT, two robotics company are doing great work, she said. Professor Luis Sentis is heading up Apptronik, a company that makes robots and exoskeletons.

Professor Andrea Thomaz is heading up Diligent Droids, a company that makes robots for healthcare providers. And Mechanical Engineering Professor Chris Rylander is heading up several commercial ventures, she said.

Listen to the full Ideas to Invoices podcast to learn more.

Editor’s note: Silicon Hills News launched on Patreon this week. Please visit the site to pledge just $1 a month to support the Ideas to Invoices podcast and other work we do at SiliconHillsNews.com. Thank you in advance for your support!

#URLinkedUp Austin technology Archives – SiliconHills http://www.siliconhillsnews.com/2017/04/28/entrepreneur-louise-epstein-shares-her-secrets-to-success-on-ideas-to-invoices/

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‘Fixer Upper’ star Chip Gaines defrauded former real estate partners, lawsuit alleges

Chip Gaines, the Waco entrepreneur who stars with wife Joanna in the HGTV show "Fixer Upper," is accused of allegedly defrauding his former real estate partners by buying them out just days before announcing that the television show had been picked up by a major network.
John Lewis and Richard Clark filed a lawsuit Thursday against Chip Gaines in state district court in Waco — about 100 miles north of Austin — seeking more than $1 million, the Waco Tribune reports.
Gaines’ attorney denied wrongdoing.

#URLinkedUp Austin Business News – Local Austin News | Austin Business Journal http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2017/04/28/fixer-upper-star-chip-gaines-defrauded-former-real.html?ana=RSS%26s=article_search

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Anti-establishment Austin bookstore turns the page, closes brick-and-mortar store to go mobile

Brave New Books, a self-described “anti-establishment” bookstore near the University of Texas at Austin campus has closed — but the "subversive literature" sold by married owners John Bush and Catherine Bleish will still be available around town.
It will have a presence at a mobile bookstore parked at Spider House, a bar and eatery just north of the UT campus, and inside Capital Coin and Bullion on Burnet Road.
Brave New Books made a name with its libertarian leanings in a liberal pocket…

#URLinkedUp Austin Business News – Local Austin News | Austin Business Journal http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2017/04/28/anti-establishment-austin-bookstore-turns-the-page.html?ana=RSS%26s=article_search

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Austin Marketing Stack

#ATX #Marketing #Texas

from Cosmic Timetraveler

Marketing Resources 🚀 from the Weirdest City on Earth 🤠

Welcome to the Austin Marketing Stack!

If you’re not familiar with Austin… We’re known for our breakfast tacos, live music, and rapidly growing startup & tech communities.

Whether you live in Austin or are already planning to move here… we hope these resources are a useful collection for anyone interested in marketing.

The goal of this project is to map out the Austin marketing landscape, curated by locals. We expect that this will be an ever-evolving and growing stack of resources. Thanks to everyone who contributed and please leave a response or contact me at anthony@modernmedia.io if there is something we should add.

Disclosure: We’re digital marketers ourselves in Austin.


It makes sense to start with SXSW. South-by-Southwest gets its own section as one of the biggest events in Austin (and the world), since 1987. Nearly a two-week marathon of technology, music, and film, bringing together an incredible mix of people and experiences.

Original flyer. Today’s SX includes Interactive, Film, & other sub-conferences

“The South by Southwest® (SXSW®) Conference & Festivals celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. Fostering creative and professional growth alike, SXSW® is the premier destination for discovery.”

  • Subconferences: SX Interactive, SX Music, SX Film, SX Edu, SX V2V, SX Eco.
  • SXSW PanelPicker: Apply to present at SXSW.
  • SXSW Trade Show: “Diverse range of forward-thinking exhibitors ranging from promising startups to established industry leaders.”
  • SXSW Marketplace: “Local Austin boutiques and hand-selected national/global brands to create a unique shopping experience.”

🗞 News + Media

Outlets and channels to keep a pulse on Austin news, both those related to marketing and potential marketing opportunities.

👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Communities

Associations and groups centered on marketing or where you may find marketers or marketing content.



>Coworking Spaces

🗯 Social Media

Who and where are people discussing marketing on social media.




🎤 Conferences + Events

> In Austin

  • Austin Startup Week: Five days of events showcasing the Austin startup community. Oct 9–13 (Between ACL weekends)
  • ATX Startup Crawl: “Have a beverage, drop off a resume, & connect with some of the best tech companies”. During SXSW and during Austin Startup Week.
  • Product Camp Austin: “free, full-day un-conference.” February & August.
  • InnoTech Austin: “Business technology event comprised of educational seminars”, November 16.
  • Internet Marketer Expo: “The #1 Event For Instantly Scaling Your Online Business”. Sheraton Austin, May 19–21.
  • Affiliate Summit: Based in Austin. Several conferences around the world.
  • Interactive Marketing Summit: Coming soon.
  • CreativeMornings ATX: “Breakfast lecture series for the creative community”. Monthly dates vary.
  • Spredfast Summit: “The Smartest in Social”. Oct 3–5.
  • VendastaCon: “Conquer local with data-backed
    insights, tactics and strategies
    ”. Conference for driving more local business to your agency / media company.
  • Performance Marketing Summit: “Performance Marketing Summit, produced by Affiliate Summit, is a 1-day conference series for digital marketers, that takes place in various cities, around the world.” March 14th.
  • Marketing Analytics Conference: “Top-to-Bottom Strategies for Data-Driven Marketing”. June 5–6.

> Nearby Austin

What conferences are nearby that marketers may be interested in traveling to from Austin. Some in Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, etc… Coming soon. Send me any you know of!

📚 Marketing Education

💰 Recruiting, Hiring, and Job Opportunities

🏢 Marketing Companies

There’s a ton of amazing companies and incredible talent in Austin. This stack would be overwhelmingly long if we attempted to list them all.

These lists seem to be a good place to start:

Thanks for reading! We hope this was valuable. If you did, please click the ♡ heart and recommend this article on Medium!

The goal of this project is to map out the Austin marketing landscape, curated by locals. We expect that this will be an ever-evolving and growing stack of resources. Thanks to everyone who contributed and please leave a response or contact us if there is something we should add.

If a daring web developer would like to help transform this stack into a format like http://marketingstack.io/email me at anthony@modernmedia.io

A Modern Media Production.

Austin Marketing Stack was originally published in Austin Startups on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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Texas franchise tax ‘on path to elimination’ after House vote

Texas’ franchise tax is "on the path to elimination."
That was how House Bill 28 sponsor Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, described it after Republicans turned back Democrats’ protests Thursday night and voted 98-45 in favor of the bill.
“This is our stand-alone bill to put the franchise tax on the correct path and that is the path to going away,” Bonnen told his colleagues on the floor as opponents lined up at the back microphone. “This is the appropriate thing to do to eliminate this bad…

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Another investor pushes Whole Foods to explore strategic alternatives, report says

Add another investment firm to the list of Whole Foods Market Inc. shareholders pushing the Austin-based grocery chain to consider a sale: Neuberger Berman Group LLC.
The New York City-based investment management firm has sent a letter to the board to evaluate its strategic options, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Neuberger Berman owned 2.4 percent of Whole Foods shares as of December, according to securities filings. The Vanguard Group Inc., a Pennsylvania-based investment management company,…

#URLinkedUp Austin Business News – Local Austin News | Austin Business Journal http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2017/04/28/another-investor-pushes-whole-foods-to-explore.html?ana=RSS%26s=article_search

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