Extra Crunch roundup: Adtech investing, Intuit buys Mailchimp, ideal customer profiles

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Big gains in online advertising have boosted valuations for edtech startups since the pandemic began, but an insider says investors are missing the party.

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“Adtech is having a moment,” writes industry veteran Casey Saran.

“And while the oxygen coming to the public market has been sucked up by big legacy companies, there have been smaller deals that indicate an appetite for better creative edtech.”

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Saran shares five reasons “why VCs should consider increasing their investments in edtech startups building the next generation of creative tools.”


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On Wednesday, September 22nd at 9:05 a.m. PT, I’m moderating “The Path for Underrepresented Entrepreneurs,” a panel discussion on Disrupt 2021.

Our conversation will examine some of the unique challenges facing founders of historically marginalized groups, the strategies they used along the way, and the disruptive changes we need to consider if we want to see fundamental change. .

I’m speaking with:

  • Hana Mohan, Founder and CEO, Magicbell
  • Leslie Finzag, Founder and CEO, Women’s Founders Coalition
  • Stephen Bailey, Co-Founder and CEO, ExecOnline

I hope you will participate; We will answer questions from the audience after our discussion is over. Thank you so much for reading Extra Crunch this week, and have a great weekend.

Walter Thompson
Senior Editor, Nerdshala
@your hero

5 things you need to win your first customer

image credit: andrewlily (Opens in a new window) / Getty Images

Congratulations on shipping your product, but how much do you know about your target customers?

Companies that have not created a perfect customer profile and done a SWOT analysis are betting big on guesswork and intuition. Sometimes it works, but more often, it leads to tears.

In a guest post that walks you through the fundamentals of creating a customer persona that maps customers to your company’s goals, Grammarly Product Marketing Lead Brian D’Souza shares five basic requirements for customer acquisition.

“Understanding and applying these things can guarantee you that the first customer will win, provided you do them well and honestly,” he says.

“Your investors will also see the fruits of your labor and take comfort in knowing that their dollars are up to the mark.”

4 Ways to Leverage ROAS for Triple Lead Generation

Someone pops tab on soda can, leaves mist/spray

image credit: passionblack (Opens in a new window) / Getty Images

In school, copying someone else’s work and passing it off as your own is highly unethical. In business, however, this is expected.

Xiaoyun Tu, Global Director of Demand Generation at Brightpearl, has written a comprehensive guide to using the key metric of Return on Advertising Spend (ROAS) to triple your company’s lead generation.

“A ‘good’ ROAS score is different for each company and campaign,” she says. “If your data isn’t where you want it, you can leverage ROAS data to create targeted campaigns and personalized experiences.”

3 strategies to make it easier for hiring managers to adopt new HR technology

step with check mark on chalkboard

image credit: Pigorex (Opens in a new window) / Getty Images

Most of us prefer to rely on our instincts rather than helping automated tools with decision making, especially when it comes to hiring. But it’s not smart.

If your startup relies on an ad-hoc hiring process, you’re probably not tracking candidates properly, there’s little consistency in how they’re treated, and bias can play a major role in why. Who to hire

It’s okay to be skeptical of automated hiring tools—but not ignorant.

What can stop the startup boom?

In yesterday’s edition of The Exchange, Anna Heim and Alex Wilhelm speculated about conditions that might combine to cool a hot startup market currently affected by low interest rates and widespread digital transformation.

“From where we stand, the factors underpinning the startup fundraising boom appear solid and are unlikely to rest overnight. Still, no golden age shines forever, and today’s shines too eventually. It will fade away.”

Intuit’s $12B Mailchimp Acquisition Is About to Expand Its Small Business Focus

Signage for financial software company Intuit at the company's headquarters in the Silicon Valley city of Mountain View, California, August 24, 2016.  (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images).

image credit: Smith Collection / Gado / Getty Images

Before news broke this week that Intuit was acquiring Mailchimp for $12 billion, the biggest buy from the ’80s-born fintech giant was last year shelling out $7.1 billion for Credit Karma.

Over the past few years, Mailchimp has been “expanding its core email marketing functionality” with offerings like web design and CRM, writes enterprise reporter Ron Miller.

Industry watchers interviewed him said the move signals Intuit’s interest in acquiring and serving more SMB customers with a variety of devices:

  • Laurie McCabe, Co-Founder and Partner, SMB Group
  • Brent Leary, Founder and Principal Analyst, CRM Essentials
  • Holger Muller, Analyst, Constellation Research

Forge’s SPAC deal is a bet on unicorn illiquidity

Alex Wilhelm for The Exchange writes, “One of my favorite long-term issues with the late-stage startup market is that it is far better at creating value than finding an exit point for that earned value.” “More simply, the startup market is excellent at creating unicorns but somewhat poor at taking them public.”

That’s good news for Forge Global, a technology startup that operates a market for secondary transactions in private companies, with Alex terming its plans to go public through the SPAC combination “completely justified.”

Dear Sophie: Should I apply for citizenship if I am convicted?

The lone figure at the entrance to the Maze Hedge with an American flag in the center

image credit: Bryce Durbin / Nerdshala

dear sophie,

A few years ago at Burning Man, I was arrested for smoking marijuana in public (in my car) and driving under the influence.

I currently have a green card and want to apply for US citizenship next year.

am i? If so, how should I handle my criminal record?

– regrets about roosting

Atlanta’s Diverse Startups Join the Global VC Funding Boom

Alex Wilhelm and Anna Heim have continued their tour of US cities in recent weeks, reaching Chicago and Boston.

This time, he dug into Atlanta’s booming startup scene, which is seeing record capital inflows.

They write, “The picture that forms is one of a city enjoying a rising tide of enterprise activity, fueled by some local dynamism, which has enabled some of its earlier stage companies to be more competitive than other markets.” Might help make it cheaper.”



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