Joanna Glasner

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VCs serve up a large helping of cash to startups disrupting food
US startups off to a strong M&A run in 2018

These days, it seems like everyone with extra cash has some kind of pricey drinking habit. It might be fine wine, craft beer or cocktails. Or it could come in the form of coconut water, cold-pressed juice or the latest frothy caffeinated concoction.

No matter what your preference,
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startups and their backers likely have you covered.

In a follow-up to our story earlier this month about food startups gobbling up venture funding, Crunchbase News is taking a look at beverage companies guzzling capital. We found that while drinkables receive a smaller portion of funding than edibles, it’s still a sector that draws hundreds of millions of dollars in annual investment.

Where are investors pouring all that money? Some unlikely places. For instance, it appears the largest funding recipient so far this year is a China-based chain called Hey Tea that’s well known for a specialty called cheese tea. (An unfortunately named, slightly salty iced drink that a Crunchbase News team sampling determined was actually pretty tasty.)

Besides cheese tea, we found startups are also raising millions to bottle deep ocean water, customize instant coffee and make your party punch more portable.

Bottom line: So long as there are profit margins to squeeze out, the quest continues for new ways to get you drunk, hydrated or caffeinated. Below, we look at what’s trending on all these fronts.

Venture investors and startup entrepreneurs are betting there are highly scalable businesses to be built in doling out more exotic varieties of water, coconut-based beverages and other drinks to hydrate calorie-conscious consumers.

An analysis of Crunchbase data unearthed at least a dozen companies developing new varieties of water and fitness drinks that have raised funding in recent quarters.

Funding data reveals that investors still see the potential for significant returns from coconut water. The largest round in the hydration category went to Harmless Harvest, a seller of fair trade, organic coconut water and probiotic drinks that recently raised $30 million. The funding comes as the sector is on a tear, with the U.S. spending alone on coconut water projected to reach $2 billion next year.

We also saw a couple of deals involving startups offering alternatives to bottled or tap water. The most heavily capitalized one to receive funding in the past couple of years appears to be FloWater, a Denver-based startup that provides pure water refill stations and has raised about $8 million to date. Meanwhile, bottled water is still generating attention, too, as evidenced by the $5.5 million round late last year for Kona Deep, a bottler of deep ocean water.

You may need water to survive, but if you’re looking to secure venture capital, it helps to throw in a bit of alcohol.

Since last year, venture investors have poured more than $300 million into an assortment of companies providing alcoholic beverages, drinking gadgetry and services to connect consumers with booze. Crunchbase News highlighted about a dozen that raised sizable rounds, along with one hangover cure startup.

Some of the larger funding rounds are for companies that don’t make alcohol; instead, these startups offer easier ways to select and buy it. These include Vivino, a popular wine rating app, as well as Drizly and Saucey, two ordering and delivery services.

There are emerging brands in the mix, too, including BeatBox Beverages, a purveyor of party punch in portable packages; Milestone Brands, a producer of organic tequilas and other spirits; and Plum, which has a gadget for dispensing good wine by the glass.

If too much drinking makes you sleepy, let caffeine come to the rescue. Venture investors, known to be heavy consumers of caffeine, also seem to like investing in the stuff.

Using Crunchbase data, we highlighted more than a dozen companies in the coffee and tea space that have secured good-sized rounds in roughly the past year. They range from fast-growing chains, like China’s Hey Tea, to packaged drinks, like non-dairy blended drink maker Willow Cup, to instant beverage innovators, like Sudden Coffee. We even found a blockchain company in the mix, Crypto N Kafe, which aims to connect coffee farmers and consumers directly.

It’s not a bad area for exits, either. The most recent significant exit was Blue Bottle Coffee, a venture-backed brand known for really, really strong brews that sold a majority stake to Nestlé last September at a valuation of over $700 million.

One additional beverage category in which we saw a high level of activity was in meal-replacement and nutrition drinks. Overall, we found at least a half-dozen companies developing nutritional drinks that have raised funding in recent quarters.

In this sector, probably the best-known startup name is Soylent, which has raised over $70 million for a line of drinks marketed to consumers who don’t have the time or inclination to sit down for a traditional meal. We also found a potential rival, meal-replacement beverage maker Ample, which secured angel funding last month.

The biggest round in the past couple of months for the space, however, went to REBBL, a startup that raised $20 million in May for its line of bottled drinks featuring health-promoting herbs, protein and coconut.

Mix it all up: Caffeinated, full and buzzed
Beverage investments, like everything else, aren’t always a home run for VCs. The demise of juicer startup Juicero last year offers a cautionary tale that large rounds don’t always translate into compelling business models.

That said, beverage purveyors don’t have to worry much about demand drying up. People will always be thirsty. And while we typically quench our thirst with simple tap or filtered water, where’s the fun (or the massive exit potential) in that?

Our analysis focused primarily on companies that have secured funding in the past year; however, we also included some rounds outside those parameters that were exceptionally large or noteworthy in other ways.

Read more: feedproxy.google.com
Are you interested in buying bank foreclosures homes, There are definitely many of them to choose from in the present-day market. While this is appealing to those who are looking for a deal, there are also some aspects of dealing with foreclosures that you need to take into consideration.

Just to start from the beginning, most people realize that foreclosed properties are those that are taken back by the banks, lending companies, or government because the mortgagee has not been able to maintain his or her monthly payments. And,
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of course, in order for the lender to be able to earn back their money, they need to get it on the market again right away and sell it as soon as possible. Selling it as soon as possible also means lowering the price, and this is where you, the buyer, can get a real deal.

In order to find bank foreclosure homes, the best source that you can use is the Internet. You can find many services that list foreclosures along with all the necessary data and details about each property. Many of these sites offer a free week's trial so you can test them out to see what they offer and how they work. You can also go through agents and brokers. Another source are the postings of auctions by government agencies.

http://bestantiwrinkle.net/natural-wrinkle-treatmentsBank foreclosures homes are generally considered to be less risky and very possibly the best choice if you are new at dealing with foreclosures. As stated earlier, the majority of foreclosed properties are sold at much lower prices so that banks can get rid of them quickly. The price can end up being up to 60% less than the market value.

When on the lookout for foreclosures, first make a decision about whether you want to resell your purchase or keep it for yourself. This will help you narrow down your choices. It's worth mentioning that you will probably put a lot of time and effort into a foreclosed house that you buy for yourself. However, a foreclosed house can be patched up quickly just for the purposes of reselling it to someone else.

Remember that you cannot just rely on the fact that foreclosed properties are cheap. Make sure that you do the appropriate research to ensure that you are really getting a good deal, and not a property that will cost you a fortune to repair and resell, or to fix up so that you yourself can live in it. Some properties will sound inexpensive and look nice, but you will have a hard time selling them because the location is undesirable. You can do the research yourself, and you can get assistance from an assessor.

Bank foreclosures homes are a good option as long as you spend a little time informing yourself of how to go about it, and do the appropriate research.
Visit kroger.com or the Kroger app to download a special 5X digital coupon and score rare savings on Kroger brand frozen boneless chicken breasts. There is a limit of one eCoupon per shopper’s card, and the eCoupon can only be redeemed 7/5 – 7/8. This special digital coupon can be redeemed up to five times in a single transaction. The eCoupon cannot be combined with other manufacturer coupons. Pay $4.99 for a three-pound bag of boneless chicken breasts!

Buy 1 Kroger Brand Boneless Chi
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cken Breasts, 3 lb $6.99, sale price through 7/10

Use one $2.00/1 – Kroger Brand Boneless Chicken Breasts, Kroger eCoupon, valid 7/5 – 7/8 (softcoin.com)

Final Price: $4.99

The post Stock the Freezer! Kroger Brand Boneless Chicken Breasts, Only $4.99! appeared first on The Krazy Coupon Lady.

Read more: thekrazycouponlady.com
It’s coming. Along with the 5432387 details to plan, the long days of travel, the hundreds or maybe even thousands of hands you’ll shake, and the pipeline … just all pipeline you can imagine.
We’re on the cusp of the first event season of the year, and the anticipation is palpable.
You know the value of a great conference, strong planning, and a well-supported marketing plan or you wouldn’t be here, reading this post. So I’ll skip all that event mumb
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o jumbo and get right to it: if you can increase event registrations,
your direct monetary return jumps, and the potential for pipeline from new or upsell business spikes, too.Good thing we have a few tricks up our sleeve to help you boost those numbers.
Surely you already know that including a video to promote your event is a supremely smart idea. More than just a smart idea, adding video to your event landing page can boost on-page conversions by up to 80%. These tips assume you’re already riding along on that bandwagon, have a video idea cooking, and just want that extra juice to pump those registrations up even higher!

Make the Play Button the Star of your EmailSending event invites through email? Of course you are, you smart marketer. Maybe you also know that including a video in your emails can increase click-through rates by 2-3x!
Since you already have that video ready to go (or will soon!), just adding an image of the splash screen—as in, literally taking a screenshot of your player and it’s play button … or maybe your designers have a more ‘professional’ route in mind. *Ahem*—means you can rise from 1,000 people clicking through your emails to 3,000.
Sorry – did you get that? You took a screenshot and added it to an email. … Then you got 300% more people clicking through to your website.
I’ll consider that one on your list to do already!
Oh, and as a side note. Yes, using the screenshot is our recommended approach since most email providers will not play videos directly inline. Plus, you really want viewers to end up on your reg page anyway!
Send Personal Invites … none of these mass mail-outsImagine I sat on the rooftop of your office building and shouted “Hey chumps, join our super-cool-wicked-awesome event next month! You’ll love it because there’s going to be some stuff for everyone and drinks and food and stuff.” … That’s what a generic video (or any generic marketing messaging) sounds like to your audience and chances are I’d lose a lot of people at “Hey chumps”. Aside from the fact I called them “chumps”, which could have a lot to do with it, they also just don’t have the attention span or care to sort through your message and determine if it’s for them or not. So more often than not, they default to the “not-for-them” setting.
You can get around this by opting for personalized marketing and let them know you’re speaking to them. Show your audience that this invite (or other event-video concept) was made just for them with a personalized video. Call them by name. We’re all programmed to respond to our name since a young age … and our names generally produce a positive feeling, so this is a win-win all around.
Guide them Right to the Action with a Video CTAYou were trying to boost event registrations here, right? So far we’ve helped more people get to your page to watch the video and captured more of your audience’s attention by addressing them personally. So how do you get them to actually sign up? You offer a CTA within your video! You’ve reeled them in so nicely, it’s only polite that you help guide them to the next step. So use a pop-out CTA part-way through your video or end with one to grab them before they wander off. And remember: think carefully about what the next step is! It might not be to register immediately. Instead, it might be to learn more or maybe even to hear from speakers who will be at the event (see the next tip!).
Offer a True Taste of the EventNo, don’t send them a sausage sample in the mail of the hot dogs that’ll be on the grill. ‘Cuz that’s strange. But dig deeper than a bland overview of your events. Consider interviewing some of your keynote speakers or breakout session leads to give a sneak preview into what they’re going to be discussing.
Okay, you got me, this is a bit of a cheater tip as it involves a secondary video – but it’s so worth it! Additional videos supply more content to your viewers and taking this approach brings a “realness” to your event, it humanizes it, and provides a pretty detailed picture of what the attendees can expect. And lastly, it’s much more engaging than reading a bunch of text descriptions of the sessions! Hubspot took this approach when they announced Martha Stewart as their keynote speaker for Inbound 2014. Check it out:
Make the Video (not just your page!) Easy to ShareUnless you’ve got a real spiffy incentive, people just don’t want to share your registration page. Sorry to burst the bubble here. But what people do like to share is good content with a story. And the more people that share your video (which is hosted on your event registration page and will likely have an amazingly compelling CTA at the end, wink-wink, nudge-nudge!), the more likely you’ll see increased event registrations. So if you branch out from the typical event video with absurdly happy people in a crowded banquet hall with drinks in hand and speakers walking confidently across the stage, and actually tell a story of what’s to come and how it’s going to radically impact your attendees year or even career, then you’re onto something that’s worth sharing.
The next step is making it easy to share. Utilize the sharing options within your video player, ask viewers to share as the final CTA, or include another on-page CTA to share the video. The possibilities are endless!

That should give you a good leg up as you head into the most exciting and also most insanely packed time of year. You’re well on your way to a spike in event registrations! Have you gotten crafty with video in the past to boost your event registrations? Share with us in the comments!

The post How to Drive more Event Registrations by Getting Crafty with Video appeared first on Vidyard.
Read more: vidyard.com
Today only, Amazon is offering top Garmin products for up to 30% off! Shop fitness trackers, golf watches, smartwatches, GPS navigators, and the Garmin Speak with Amazon Alexa.

Shop the entire Garmin sale here!

Buy 1 Garmin vivofit Jr. (reg. $79.99) $49.99, sale price through 7/17
Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $49.99 shipped
Buy 1 Garmin Speak with Amazon Alexa (reg. $149.99) $79.99, sale price through 7/17
Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $79.99 shipped
Buy 1 Garmin vivoactive HR GPS Smartwatch (
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reg. $249.99) $124.99, sale price through 7/17
Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $124.99 shipped
Buy 1 Garmin Approach S20 Golf Watch (reg. $199.99) $129.99, sale price through 7/17
Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $129.99 shipped

Amazon Prime Day: See What’s Trending!
The post Huge Garmin Sale on Amazon – Pay as Low as $49.99! appeared first on The Krazy Coupon Lady.

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If you've ever found yourself confused by the expression "curiosity killed the cat", just watch the video below.

It's almost like a modern-day — although thankfully much less severe — retelling.

SEE ALSO: Safely satisfy your cat's natural hunting instincts with this toy

"I told my cat she wasn't gonna like this salt and vinegar chip but she didn't listen to me", tweeted Julianna Madison from Philadelphia, US earlier this week.

Behold the result (and m
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ake sure you have your sound on):

Oh dear.

Well, Missy may have had an unpleasant chip-related experience, but at least she's now a viral superstar. That video has had well over 200,000 retweets at the time of writing. Read more...
More about Cats, Culture, and AnimalsRead more: mashable.com
Love meal prepping? This is a great time to stock up on meal prep containers! Through the end of today, Amazon is offering their two best-selling 20-packs of meal prep containers by Enther for more than half off.

Free shipping is available with Amazon Prime. Not a Prime member? Sign up for a free trial now. Otherwise, shipping is free on orders of $25.00 or more.

Here’s how to save:
Buy 1 20-Pack of Enther Meal Prep Containers – 1 Compartment with Lids (reg $25.99) $12.50, sale price through 7/3
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Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $12.50 shipped, or $0.63 each
Buy 1 20-Pack of Enther Meal Prep Containers – 2 Compartments with Lids (reg $50.00) $13.30, sale price through 7/3
Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Final Price: $13.30 shipped, or $0.67 each
up next: 14-Piece Snack Box, Only $9.99 Shipped – Save 50%!
The post Top-Rated Meal Prep Containers, as Low as $0.63 Each on Amazon! appeared first on The Krazy Coupon Lady.

Read more: thekrazycouponlady.com

Email is an easy way to keep in touch and connect with customers, but it has to be used properly to be effective. In addition to grooming your list for qualified leads, you need to keep email etiquette front and center.

Keeping an eye on how, when and why you’re in contact with customers can make all the difference in achieving your goals. Here are some questions we ask:

How often, and when should you send? How often you send emails depends on a combination of your line of business and
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customer expectations. If they explicitly signed up for a weekly newsletter, then it's a good idea to keep that obligation. Otherwise, once or twice a month may be enough. You certainly don’t want to spam them. Sending too many messages not only disturbs customers, it makes them blind to your messages so they end up hitting delete.

Editor's note: Looking for an email marketing service? Fill out the below questionnaire to be connected with vendors that can help.


What's your message? Hand-in-hand with frequency is the actual content of your message. A good policy is to only send an email if you have something to say. Did you add a new product or service to your offering? Are you holding a seasonal sale? Was your business featured in the news? These are all email-worthy topics. If nothing new is going on, and you essentially just want to send out a reminder that “Hey, I’m around," you may want to consider how to do this more elegantly. For example, if you’re a gardener, you could wish customers a happy first day of spring, and highlight your services.

What's your call to action? Like having a purpose to your message, you need what is referred to as a call to action. That is, customers need to know what do with the information they’ve received; what’s expected of them next. Examples for emails might be “Use this promotional code for a 10 percent discount” or, “Call us now for a free consultation." The CTA should tell them what to do with a verb. "Call," "sign up" or "click here" are examples. 

Is your tone right? Gone are the days of “Sir” and “Ma’am,” but in most cases, your customers are not your friends. Unless they’re teenagers, greetings like “Hey” may be a bit too casual. In other words, keep things friendly and professional. Use language appropriately, avoid slang and jargon, and don’t forget to spellcheck before you send.

Is it short enough? When it comes to emailing customers, it is crucial that you keep it short. Many people these days are checking promotional mailers from their mobile phone, or on the job (or both). They don’t have the time, or energy, to figure out what you want. Get to the point as fast as you can, and make your message as clear as possible. A good graphic can always help.

Can you deliver what you promise? You need to be able to provide what you offer. If you’re offering a “buy one, get one free” offer, you’ll need to give customers exactly that. If this offer is limited to the first 10 customers who call, or those who live within a certain radius, make sure you’re covered by adding the properly worded terms and conditions to your email. Providing a solid customer experience is critical. 

Did you talk about only yourself? You may think your competitor’s business isn’t up to par, but email is not the place to mention that. In fact, you may end up needing to file an insurance claim if you go around saying things like that! Instead of comparing yourself to competitors, focus on your own excellent qualities, and leave the judgements up to customers themselves.

Is there an unsubscribe option? Customers may no longer want to hear from you for any number of reasons. That’s their right, and why you must always add an opt-out button or link to every email you send. More than simply polite, it’s also part of the law.

Remember, email is a form of communication. It is an important face to your business, and if done well, an easy way to stay in touch with customers. While there’s no formula for absolute success, keeping good etiquette is always a good start. Use it wisely, keep an eye on your statistics, and be willing to try new things. In time, you should be able to come up with the winning email standards for your customers – and you.

Read more: business.com