At Bullish, we believe in using great software to achieve world changing business goals. Here are some of our top recommended resources and tools to help you plan your empire. (Some of the links below are affiliate links!)
In the battle of Squarespace vs. Wix, who wins? The Bullish Conference site is on Wix
, and the Bullish Conference 2014 website was on Squarespace
. In short: Squarespace has more advanced features, Wix is easier to use. Of course, that’s subject to constant change. Also, Wix has a free level. Here’s a post
comparing the two in more detail.
I have a nostalgic attachment to this stand
, and have probably had three of them over the years, going all the way back to my very first internet marketing company. There’s something very satisfying about taking a company that mostly exists on a laptop and planting your flag in the physical world. Starting a new business? Make a sign (see below), stick it on this stand, and any physical space you happen to be in right now is YOURS.
When I need a projector, I use the Epson VS240 SVGA 3LCD Projector 3000 Lumens Color Brightness which is more color accurate and is fast and easy to set up. And a projector needs a projection screen like the Epson Duet 80-Inch Dual Aspect Ratio Projection Screen.
Stay organized and label all your supples with a label maker.
Here’s a little about the Bullish store. We focus on a lot of small, lightweight, non-fragile products to make storage and shipping easy. Many of our products ship in expensive poly bags in 6×9 or 9×12. We try to make the “unboxing” experience of many of our packages a little fancy with Bullish-purple tissue paper. And we buy bulk packing tape. Finally, we use this wireless postage scale – the vast majority of our packages are under 10 lb., so this tiny little scale works perfectly without taking up space.
When it comes time for the Bullish Conference, we save a lot on catering by just grabbing some party-style champagne glasses
and getting festive with as much champagne as we can carry.
Good signage is key. We use BuildASign.com. My go-to: 18 x 24 inch corrugated plastic, for about $27. Just upload a design and have it shipped wherever you’ll be doing business.
While a lot of Bullish happens online, there are times we need to print! We’ve had great service and product from PSPrint.com
, and Moo.com
There are times when it’s imperative to send things in the real world. We pay $15/mo for Stamps.com
, which allows us to easily print postage on an ordinary printer with any brand of labels. There is a standalone desktop app for PC only; the Mac version is accessible through a browser only. We especially like the autocomplete of addresses, so typing in someone’s first name will often bring up their address (and then we only have to glance to make sure the person hasn’t moved!) Recently, Shopify (see below) has added an option to buy postage within the backend of our online store, so we use Stamps.com less, but it’s still a cool deal.
We’ve been providing fun productivity-supporting paraphernalia, elegant solutions for bossladies and feminist propaganda for a while now. We started out on BigCartel
, which is super simple and even has a free version.
When we needed more features and more control over the look of our store, we upgraded to Shopify
, which starts at $29/month, although you’ll probably also end up paying monthly fees for plugins and apps that add functionality to your store (for example, Nosto
provides our “recommended products”). Very usefully, Shopify now allows us to buy shipping entirely within the app, which saves us quite a lot of effort of switching from Shopify to Stamps.com.
We love Etsy
! The mythical birthplace of rubber bullicorn stamps, our “step and repeat” (a photo backdrop for Bullish events), commissioned illustrations for our coloring book, and unicorn horns. Many Etsy sellers do custom bulk orders (if applicable, ask if it’s acceptable to resell their work!)
They say a picture’s worth a thousand words, so they need to be the right ones. I love The Cagey Lumen
(a.k.a. a guy in NYC named Joe) who took many of my pics on this site.
If you’re taking your own, it’s much easier to take professional level photos if you’ve got the right stuff. This kit for product photos comes with photo tents, lights with tripods and a few backdrops.
If you’re doing studio shots—any shots of people, really—you’ll need a backdrop. Step one is a Fancierstudio Background Stand Backdrop Support System Kit, step two is Heavy Duty Muslin Clamps 4 1/2 inch 6 Pack. Step three is the backdrop itself.
My video backdrop (it’s actually a fancy shower curtain!) is not available anymore, but here are three similar ones by the same designer:
The Bullish Conference is a huge event on our calendars, and we use Eventbrite
to make the behind-the-scenes happen.
For smaller and recurring events, Meetup
is fantastic – it is integrated with payment processor WePay, to get your payments automatically deposited into your bank account.
is our platform of choice for hosting videos. WeVideo
is an inexpensive service that allows you to make attractive videos with music out of slideshows or still photos.
Broadcasting on Periscope, making a video course, or photographing products? You’ll probably want an iPhone tripod.
Find a space to meet or work, alone or in a group via Breather
(NYC, SF, Boston, Ottawa, Montreal, more cities on the way). We used Breather to host the hospitality room on Friday before the 2015 Bullish Conference.
Uniregistry are reasonably priced, easy to use and have decent customer service. They also don’t make you click through a million add ons to check out.
After trying many platforms, we’re currently using PGi iMeet
for our webinars
and online meetings.
The Get Bullish app is built with Como, which allows anyone to easily create an app that aggregates your existing web and social media identities – for instance, our app includes the RSS feed from the GetBullish front page, as well as easy access to our Shopify shop, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and more. Note, in addition to Como’s fees ($48/mo when paid annually), the Apple App Store charges a $99 annual developer fee and Google Play charges a one-time fee of $25.
We make most of our web graphics on Canva and have recently switched to Canva for Work ($12.95/mo per team member).
For business cards, we like the templates and interface at Moo.com.
Last year, we needed a custom print piece to promote #BullCon15 and worked with bullicorn Sarah Dale: check her out on twitter, or on her website.
When we put together our feminist coloring book, we commissioned amazing work from illustrators Those Little Drawings and Tawana Simone Art.
Savings, Loans, and Investing
Qapital, a personal finance app that makes savings fun and easy. (It allows you to do cool stuff like automatically put an extra dollar into savings every time you buy Pinkberry.)
I’ve talked about investing in Fund Your Business or Get Started Investing in Startups, Part I and Part II. For peer-to-peer lending, we’re team Prosper.
We’ve used Fiverr for all kinds of one-off illustrations, voiceovers, modeling photos, and more.
The Hipster Logo Generator is fun and free.