Tagged with Alon Goren

How ready are you to die for an ideal?

In preparing for some upcoming InvestedIn press about the impending launch of INV.ST, I started to take a bit of an inventory of where and when I want to make some announcements.  When I came to this blog, I had 2 interesting realizations:

  1. There are more DRAFT posts on this blog than actual posts.
  2. I didn’t post once in 2014.

Some of the drafts are actually pretty interesting and compelling (how’s that for being full of myself?), and the main reason that they are still drafts is because they are incomplete.  The reasons for that?  Mostly just being too busy running a business and growing my family…or at least that’s what I tell myself.  The bigger more interesting fact, is that when I started writing some of the posts, I was inspired through frustration.  I would get home from a meeting, an event or a long day at work and “rant” to myself  on this blog in the wee hours of night (like I’m doing now) after everyone in the house was asleep and I was done with the nights work.  The next day when it came to complete and publish the post I would almost always wuss out of posting it because I was afraid to offend some person or group…which is interesting, because I pride myself on being extremely honest in person, and I think that I am mostly that way.  I think it’s one of the reasons I get asked to speak at so many crowdfunding/tech conferences.  You ask me a question, and you’ll get my opinion.  I’m calling myself out on this one.

To address the second realization, I believe it really mostly is being busy.  This last year was an insane one for me personally, and for InvestedIn.  Growing family and growing business = Alon not answering questions on quora or blogging.  Let’s change that for 2015.

I think that when I engage my peers (friends and family) through this blog (and my newsletter), it not only helps me with my business (in various ways), but also helps others.

So I am asking for your help.  Comment with topics and/or things you want me to write about.  Vote up your favorite suggestions.  I’ll try to knock them down one at a time and lets see what I can do.  If I start to slow down, call me on it!

***UPDATE!!:  On a suggestion from another 805er, I am going to take one or more of these topics and also set up a local event with a talk / panel to teach and discuss.  Please add more suggestions and vote your favorites.

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2014 – The Birth of Crowdfunding

If the Crowdfunding industry was a child, inception till now would have been the first trimester of pregnancy. The industry is not only still “baking”, we can’t even tell the sex of the baby. We haven’t yet told anyone outside our immediate family the exciting news. Haven’t even picked out the name, or the crib, or the theme for the baby’s room. You get it.

2014 will be full of terrifying, taxing and trying times that will be overshadowed by the wins, the excitement and the promise of the future. Those of us that are a part of this industry are prideful, hopeful and positively charged by the promise that this industry, nay, revolution has.

In 2014 we’ll all witness the birth of something beautiful. Something meaningful. Something powerful. With all the potential in the world.

Let’s not eff this up. It takes a village.

Crowdfunding still looks like a shrimp on the ultrasound.

Crowdfunding still looks like a shrimp on the ultrasound.

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If I want to change the world, it’s gotta start with me.

I’ve been working on online fundraising tools for years now. I’ve learned a lot and it’s been really great…but most of the time I’ve just been pissed off.  Pissed off at limitations, pissed off at shitty, ugly products, and mostly just angry that companies have the balls to charge an arm and a leg to charities and individuals whose funds would be better spent on research and their supporting communities.  I’m definitely not against making money.  I think in most cases it’s necessary to providing quality tools and products. (different argument…tangent)  The main thing that gets me going is that non-profits feel they have no choice but to use some of these offensively expensive, mediocre products…partly because of their lack of technical expertise, and partly because of the lack of good choices (among many other reasons).

I’m hoping to change that.

I’m so excited to announce that Invested.in has finally launched Good Clean Fund – http://goodcleanfund.com.

Good Clean Fund is about fairness.
Good Clean Fund is about beauty.
Good Clean Fund is about quality.
Good Clean Fund is about technology.
Good Clean Fund is about fundraising.
Good Clean Fund is about love.
Good Clean Fund is currently free.
Good Clean Fund is NOT about nickel and dime-ing anyone.
And I’m hoping that…
Good Clean Fund will serve as a big FUCK YOU to the status quo.

I’d love for you to check it out, and I’d love your feedback.  Nothing is ever perfect and we’re constantly making improvements.

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Business Rockstars segment on crowdfunding and why @AmplifyLA rules.

I’ve been meaning to write a full blog post about my experience at Amplify, but I’ve been too busy.  I’ll get around to it soon.  Until then, in this segment I did on the radio I talk a little bit about why Amplify rules.

This is my first segment on Business Rockstars repping Invested.in, talking about Crowdfunding and Startup Accelerators.

Full episode: http://businessrockstars.com/br/2012/10/business-rockstars-ep93-wed-1024/

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The pressure builds up day by day…

As most of you know, I am doing a FitFunder fundraiser for charity.  So far, it’s great!  As of right now, I’ve raise $409 from 22 supporters, gone on a couple great hikes, some insane bike rides and a short run.

The only scary part, is that if I don’t reach my goal of running/hiking/biking 100 miles by the end of the month, none of the pledges go through.  So far I’m at 44.2 miles, which means I’m about 14 miles behind!  Gonna make it up this weekend!

If you’ve got a minute, please check out the fundraiser:  http://fitfunder.com/100-miles-for-charity

Pics from the hikes:

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Turn on the light…

Hi, Friends!

I’ll use this first post to introduce myself.  I sort of wrote my reasons for writing this blog in the About section, so check that out if you want.

This blog will mostly be my ramblings, lessons learned and rants about being a Punk in the startup/business/tech world…but to better know where I’m coming from, this is who I am:

I’m a Punk:  My name is Alon Goren, and ever since my brother first introduced me to Bad Religion in junior high, I’ve been obsessed with Punk Rock.  The music, the lyrics, the culture…every part of it.  Punk Rock is an integral part of my being and plays a major role in everything I do.  In high school I started a Punk record label called Let Them Eat Records.  During college I was in a band, organized and promoted Punk Rock shows, released records and compilations under my label and toured around/went to shows all over California.

I’m a husband:  As silly or lame as this may sound to you, the first time my wife (then girlfriend) got in my car, she turned the volume UP on what I was listening to, and with that one gesture I knew we had something more.  It wasn’t EVERYTHING to me, but it meant a lot at the time.  Getting to know her more and more and learning that she genuinely loved the music and culture that I so identify with was almost everything.  It also doesn’t hurt that she’s absolutely perfect in every single way.  I’m the luckiest man alive in that respect.

I’m a dad! (almost):  Nicole’s pregnant! Due March 11th.  I’ve never been so excited in my life.  I can’t wait to hold my little boy in my arms and sing him some of my favorite songs!

I’ve worked at:  From the day I got my drivers license, I’ve had a job.  At first it was making deliveries and running Express Parts Exchange, an auto-parts rebuilding shop my dad owns.  Growing up in a house that was supported by a family owned business prepares you for life in a way that I don’t believe you can get in many other ways.  It gives you an appreciation for hard work that you learn not just by example, but by inclusion in the hard work.  Some of my earliest memories are from being in the shop, or from going on deliveries with my older brother when I was just 8 years old.  Like Punk Rock is a part of me, so is the work ethic and determination that comes from running your own business.

During the beginning of college (at the same time I was doing all of the Punk stuff) I worked at a couple different banks as a teller.  Then I got a job in the systems architecture group at Countrywide.  After that I started working at MySpace and finished up my last couple years of school at night, while working at MySpace full-time.  From there I went to Withoutabox/IMDb where I still work.

I’m a startup guy:  I am one of the founders of Invested.in.  We started Invested.in because we wanted people to be able to define the way they raise money online.  Completely customizable from A to Z…A DIY approach.  No simple solutions gave anyone the ability to fundraise on their own terms.  We launched Invested.in at the DEMO2010 conference.  Since then, our consumer site has grown organically and we are now licensing out the platform, and launching new and exciting products.

Please join me on my journey.  :-)

-A

Follow Alon on Google+.

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