3 Over-Hyped Companies & How To Avoid Their Mistakes

We’re talking about hype and how to use it for good in your business this month at Smartups. Unfortunately, some companies have gotten hype wrong. Let’s look at three of them and see what we can learn from their mistakes.


Cuil_logoCuil was a search engine that came out and had a rockstar launch in 2008. They claimed to have a larger index and that they were faster than Google. They even had an ex Google engineer running the show, which provided credibility to the claims. And they had already raised $33 million dollars. They got tons of press right away from the launch. They had some unique and innovative ideas. Unfortunately, as people dove into the search engine, they didn’t find the results as good as expected.

The hype turned to backlash, and, eventually, the company shut its servers down.


Don’t Just Pitch. Market.

At January’s Smartups meeting, Dr. Tony Ratliff took the mic to share some insights on marketing for startups. Having been on both the startup side and investor side, he brought a treasure trunk full of tips on pitching. If this is your first time hearing about Smartups, it’s a monthly meet up group in Indianapolis where marketers and entrepreneurs come together to share their insights on startups.

The full-time dentist, full-hearted entrepreneur walked us through the elements for a successful pitch, highlighting 3 goals:

  • to give investors an overview
  • to get them excited about your company, your team, your idea, your product, your solution
  • to get them to take the next step