30-second snapshot of your business’s industry

[a reader has asked that I include the occasional tip on tools that should be useful to entrepreneurs selling their companies.  Here’s the first]

Several months ago a neighbor was telling me the war stories about the process of selling her specialty-item manufacturing company. [fittings for liquified gas pipelines] [full disclosure: I had no role in that transaction]  During the 6 month sales process, she told me, she lost at least 3 opportunities to increase the selling price: a competitor changed its product line, another filed for Chapter 11, and a changing regulatory environment seemed to be on the brink of making a policy that would dramatically increase sales for one of her company’s product lines.

She told me she simply never had the time to browse around the net, that it didn’t sound like much but the 5 or 10 minutes each day she really should be devoting to going to competitor sites, or scanning business news, or looking at industry headlines … well, she just felt it was too much.

Yesterday, a colleague pointed me in the direction of something that could have helped my neighbor. More to the point here, its something that could possibly help any time-stretched entrepreneur – whether they’re selling their business or not.

protopagecaptureLondon-based ProtoPage (http://protopage.com) offers a dead, dead simple way to create a web page where all your ‘must read’ sites have images and links.  In the case of the neighbor’s business environment, a dummied up example could be something like http://protopage.com/tomportante .

5 minutes to set up.  And a half-minute every day after that to get a sense of what’s doing.

oh… it’s free, and its coded so that you can look at it on your smart phone…

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