Party like a Rock Star and Get to Seattle!


Last night I spoke to a group of visiting MBA students from Harvard Business School and MIT’s Sloan School of ManagementOther panelists included Rand Fishkin, CEO of SEOmoz, Glenn Kelman CEO of Redfin, Spencer Rascoff CEO of Zillow, Dan Shapiro, CEO of Sparkbuy and Tracy Wright, CFO of

We covered a variety of topics ranging from driving innovation to the technologies MBA students should have some familiarity with. However, the best part of the discussion was brought up by Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff, who encouraged all visiting MBA students to consider Seattle for their post-graduate career.  Here’s a quick list of reasons why MBA’s from top programs should consider Seattle:

  • Diverse technology community from exciting start-ups like the many listed on Seattle 2.0 to Microsoft, Amazon, Expedia, and
  • Strong wireless industry and talent. Both T-Mobile and many of the key decision-makers at AT&T Wireless are located in Seattle’s Eastside. WhitePages was able to build our own successful mobile division (Top 10 iPhone and Android apps) by recruiting very experienced wireless experts from AT&T Wireless, RealNetworks, & Snapin.
  • Games. In addition to Nintendo, and Microsoft’s Xbox division, Seattle is the epicenter of the casual games market with Big Fish Games, Wild Tangent, and Pop Cap.
  • No State Income Tax (yet).  For some, that can be a 5-10% increase in take home compensation.
  • Boating capital of the world. We are surrounded by oceans and lakes for fishing, skiing, rowing, and swimming.  You can hit the ski slopes and mountains in about one hour, and some of the best skiing is a great weekend trip away at Whistler, Canada.
  • Some of the world’s best brick and mortar brands were started or are headquartered in Seattle: REI, Nordstrom, Costco, and Starbucks to name a few.

The one point I made at the panel may sound frivolous but is also incredibly important for MBA students to really get to know and enjoy each other. Through the MBA program at Harvard Business School, I was able to meet lifelong friends and build a strong professional network that has helped me in a variety of scenarios from advice to partnerships to getting funding and making deals. So to all of you completing an MBA degree, go out and get to know your classmates over a cold beer or a hot coffee and then plan on making the move to Seattle.

Get On The Early List For DealPop


DealPop is launching on July 14, 2010 in Seattle.  DealPop is an online service that will soon offer great deals at the best places to eat, drink, and have fun-right in your neighborhood.

Find out who some of featured deals will be and sign up now to get the offers first by clicking here.

The Media:

DealPop in The Seattle Times

Smashing Thoughts: A Local Bloggers View of DealPop

Greater Seattle On The Cheap

Value is Much More Than A Good Deal: How WhitePages Launched DealPop

The Official DealPop Blog


Neil Patel is a big deal, and DealPop is a good deal

@neilpatel Follow @DealPop on Twitter for inside info on the best places to drink, eat and shop in #SEA! (pls RT!)

Official Twitter Page for DealPop

DealPop on Facebook

Hate Your Cell Phone Or Carrier? How To Get Your Money Back


You’re not the only person tired of cell phones costing at least $200 in addition to $80+ per month and still requiring a 2 year contract. All in, that’s over $1k down the drain if you make the wrong decision.  Often times carriers have spotty coverage, and sometimes the phone you choose can be harder to use than you first thought. On top of it all, it’s often times unclear if you’re able to return a phone after you buy it, and what refunds you’re entitled to. Here are some tips that will clear up any confusion:

You must act quick.

Here’s the deal, depending on which carrier you go with, you have a window of opportunity to return your phone and get your money back.

Below is a quick look at the return policies when you purchase directly from one of the 4 major US Carriers:

Cell Phone Carrier Return Data

You must do the following:

  • Always ask to see the refund and exchange policy in writing. Wireless carrier policies change all the time, and if you buy from a re-seller or dealer, their policies may be different.
  • Maintain your device in excellent shape with all packaging, accessories, and material that come with the phone.
  • Keep all of your receipts. Most carriers require proof of purchase for a return
  • Be nice and respectful to the person helping you. Your goal is to get your money back.

The bottom line is to read the fine print and ask the sales person these questions before you purchase.

If you have any experiences or tips on returning your cell phone and/or cancelling your coverage let us know.

For more mobile phone tips and wireless news, follow me on Twitter @knakao

Links to Wireless Policies:





WhitePages Mobile: Top 10 iPhone Reference App


It’s pretty amazing to see that after hitting Top 4 in the overall free chart, over a year later the WhitePages iPhone application continues to be a Top 10 free reference application.

Ingrid Michelsen recently wrote about how WhitePages Mobile Moved From the Sidelines To The Limelight in 6 months and today we announce reaching over 2 million users on mobile.

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(Mobile) Innovation Will End This Global Recession


Right as the worst economic news hit, we presented our mobile plan for funding to the board of Whitepages. While other companies were cutting back, the response from our President/COO Max Bardon was “This is exciting, budget approved…how fast can you make this happen”.

We quickly put our plan into place, hiring internally and signing deals with top mobile developers. All told, there were over 20 people from the U.S., Germany, and India working with us, resulting in a slew of new and innovative mobile offerings:

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