Each day, Inc.'s reporters scour the Web for the most important and interesting news to entrepreneurs. Here's what we found today:
Cashing in on clutter. Today's Wall Street Journal tells the story of Matt Paxton, founder of Clutter Cleaner, and how he used reality TV to gain exposure for his brand. When the company first started and Paxton was cash-strapped, he posted a message on Facebook, asking friends if they had any connections in the television industry. That initial request led him to a contact at Screaming Flea Productions, the company behind the reality show "Hoarders." Now, Clutter Cleaner has been featured in more than 12 episodes, hauling and sorting through the trash collected by compulsive hoarders. Though the company is still bringing in a modest $500,000 in revenue each year, Paxton tells the Journal, "The television exposure means that we don't have to advertise anymore...And we don't have to explain what we do. We can sell our service in a five-second sound bite."
Facebook delaying IPO...again. Well, probably. Bloomberg reports that Facebook will "probably" push back its initial public offering another year, until 2012. It cited three unnamed sources "familiar with the matter" who said the company would benefit from another year of growth before adding the scrutiny of a public listing. But with CEO Mark Zuckerberg still holding board control, he could push for a sale at any time - and it could be the largest IPO since Google's in 2004. Last year, experts seemed to think Zuckerberg would push for a 2010 IPO, and more recently, it's been expected to happen in 2011. But 40 companies have delayed or withdrawn IPOs this year in the United States, Bloomberg reports, so maybe the $24.9 billion-valued company is just going with the flow. After all, Zuckerberg's last public statement on when he'd take the company public was "when it makes sense."
Fred Wilson gets defensive. In a wide-ranging blog post, the venture capitalist chimes in on Twitter and Foursquare haters, the angel-investment explosion, and why entrepreneurs need lead investors.
Survival tips for the long haul flight. A business trip to Asia or Europe can be an exciting cultural experience. What's less exciting (and a little more exhausting) is the thought of the 12-hour flight to get there. Business Insider has put together a slideshow with some practical tips for making long haul flights a little more bearable, starting with a suggestion to try not to dress like Pamela Anderson. "If you're going to be stuck on a cramped plane for hours, it's a good idea to wear loose, comfortable clothing that won't restrict your movements." The slideshow also include tips on packing, portable electronics, and fighting jet lag. For a list of the top picks for hotels, airlines, and travel gadgets and accessories, don't miss the Inc. Business Travel 50.
Getting in on the boom in virtual goods. It seems that behemoths of the video game industry are looking for a new way to squeeze cash from nerdy pockets. The Wall Street Journal (via AllThingsD) reports that, not only did the virtual goods market exploded from $278 million in 2008 to a projected $1.7 billion this year in the U.S. alone, but big names like Sony and Time Warner are eschewing subscription models in favor of selling virtual goods to their audiences. Here's how you can set up your own virtual goods market, as well as the story of two indie game developers who made major bank by letting customers pay whatever they wanted.
Last updated: Jul 30, 2010
JASON DEL REY was a senior reporter covering technology, branding, and company culture for Inc. magazine. Before joining Inc., his work appeared in Newsday, The (Newark) Star-Ledger, and the Staten Island Advance, and on ESPN.com. He lives in New Jersey. @DelRey