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Mike Fridgen has learned a few things about branding in his life as a serial entrepreneur. The CEO of was co-founder and CEO of TripHub before going on to work for companies including Farecast and Microsoft.

He shared some of his branding lessons learned at Seattle 2.0 Startup Day, presented by GeekWire this past weekend.

For anyone who missed the event, or wants to relive the highlights, we’re rolling out video and related content from all of the talks by Startup Day speakers as a follow-up.

Mike Fridgen, CEO of

Watch the full video of Fridgen’s talk above, and continue reading for a few of our favorite takeaways. You can also access the audio here as an MP3, for listening on your favorite device. A big thanks to the team at Bootstrapper Studios for their help on all of this content.

(Thanks also to one of our sponsors, Microsoft BizSpark, for supporting the event and introducing this talk by Fridgen.)

On the opportunities in tech: “The same technology that it took to put a man on the moon is in today’s toasters.  You might think that I would compare it to the iPhone 5.  The iPhone 5 is like on a different planet it’s so advanced.  Or to put it another way, one Google search query has as much computing power as the entire Apollo program.  If you’re asking yourself ‘Should I get into a startup?,’ these are incredible times.”

The data deluge: “Social is one of the things driving Big Data.  There are 500 terabytes created every single day by 900 million Facebook users across the globe.”

Opportunities in the cloud: “The Cloud is making it possible for startups to do things that they wouldn’t have even dreamed of doing just years ago.  The cost of building a big data application has come down dramatically.  The storage capabilities, it’s creating completely new worlds of innovation.”

Getting started with branding: “The first thing is the positioning statement.  You think some of this stuff is marketing fluff but it’s not. It’s core and it’s strategic.  For us it was thinking about, who are we targeting?”

Characteristics of a brand: “There are functional and emotional aspects to this (your brand).  For Farecast the functional aspect was, we wanted to be trusted advisors.  Not just another shopping site that is trying to optimize monetization by putting the hotel or flight in front of you where they make the most money, but really someone you can come to and trust that they’re giving you objective data driven information. With that there’s an emotional aspect.  How do you want people to feel?”

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