Companies vs. rare diseases. Track your tuna. Multi-cloud strategies.

Validate me

Hi there,

What makes an ad campaign successful?

Zander Nethercutt says it’s convincing people that buying the product will make them look better to other people.

In other words, we buy stuff because we want other people’s approval.

See today’s Blurb for the full article.

Search for the cure

The pharmaceutical industry is focusing more on rare diseases. These conditions each affect fewer than 200,000 people, and they range from brain disorders to skin, kidney, and lung diseases.

We rounded up the top startups, small public companies, investors, and acquirers in the rare disease space. Check them out here.

Not your mother's beauty products

Independent, D2C beauty brands are having a moment. This segment saw the most deals in the beauty industry last year, with corporates eager to snatch up-and-coming brands.

From vegan protein powders to sleep repair to cannabis-infused skincare, here are the trends to watch from the 2018 Indie Beauty Expo.

Be the brand. You are the brand.

Construction company Myers & Sons finishes large-scale construction projects ahead of schedule so often that owner C.C. Myers is known as the “Miracle Worker Highway Man.”

Myers got his first construction job at age 16. He’s now 76-years-old and, according to his crew, in the office every day.

His personality and “need for speed” work ethic drive the company culture without buzzy slogans or defined “corporate values.”

The company culture isn’t for everyone — it’s designed not to be — and that seems to be why it’s so successful.

Read more in The Blurb.

 Gone fishin'

The global seafood industry is facing a boatload of problems, including tariffs, effects of overfishing, climate change, and new consumer demand for transparency.

From sustainable sourcing to plant-based products, we take a look at how startups are transforming the industry.

Cloud coverage

Companies are finding it less efficient to use just one cloud platform. They're using multi-cloud strategies to avoid vendor lock-in, reduce costs, and enjoy the best services that each provider has to offer.

We break down cloud computing technology, multi-cloud strategies, and which tech giants are challenging Amazon's dominance in the space. Check it out here.

No managerial skills? Great, you’re promoted

The Peter Principle says that “every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence.” It’s supposed to be a joke, but a lot of people take it seriously.

So a group of economists did some research. Using data that covers 214 firms, 53,000+ workers, and 1,500+ promotions, they found that there’s actually quite a bit of truth to the principle.

Top salespeople were often promoted to managers based on their sales performance alone — and then they made terrible managers.

Tim Harford has some ideas for how companies can avoid getting stuck with top performers who make incompetent bosses. You can find his article in The Blurb.

Sharing is caring

Microsoft wants to make it easier to share content on video and audio calls. This month, the company was granted a patent that will allow users to share files on a call without having to open another application — regardless of their device.

We take a closer look at the patent here.

New terms

"Vegan" is out — at least on earnings calls. Companies are trying to avoid more "polarizing" terms when describing meatless products. Now they're saying "plant-based."

We discussed this in one of this week's client-only notes. If you're a client, you can read it here.

The classifieds

Some of our friends are hiring:

The Industry Standard

CB Insights data is the most trusted by those in the industry and the media. A few recent hits.

Bloomberg. Shuli Ren (@shuli_ren) reports that thousands of users are pledging to delete Didi Chuxing’s ride-hailing app following the murder of a passenger and cites CB Insights data.

VentureBeat. Yung Wu (@yungwu) writes about where VCs are looking for North America’s next tech hub and refers to CB Insights research.

Recode. Jason Del Rey (@delrey) writes about successful startups that turned down VC funding and cites CB Insights data.

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The Blurb

A curated mix of articles worth sharing.

This is cool, right? Successful advertising convinces consumers that the advertised product will make other people think they're better people.
Zander Nethercutt

Personal branding. Construction company Myers & Sons consistently finishes large-scale construction/restoration projects ahead of schedule, but its personal branding isn’t for everyone.

Is this a joke? The Peter Principle is meant to be satire, but economists have published what could be the first empirical investigation of its truth.
Tim Harford

Yes, it’s me, a top female exec. The FBI and NYPD are investigating a scam artist who has been impersonating female industry executives.
Hollywood Reporter

More than you pretend to be. Tofurkey is suing the state of Missouri to continue describing its products as meat.
Fast Company

There’s an app for that. Women struggling to conceive are turning to fertility apps.
New York Times
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