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Michelle Ferrier addresses female entrepreneurs on journalism innovation

School of Communications associate professor Michelle Ferrier counseled new entrepreneurs regarding business motives and models for success during the closing keynote of the inaugural BlogHer Business |Entrepreneurism | Technology conference March 25.

Michelle Ferrier

The event at Microsoft headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., brought together more than 100 women (and a few men) for mentoring, coaching and funding development. Sessions ranged from innovations in mobile technology to creating the pitch deck for venture capital presentations.

“Examine your reasons for creating your business,” Ferrier said. “Be ruthless about serving your customer and don’t be afraid to change direction and strategy.”

Female intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs of Silicon Valley, tech startups and funding agencies such as Charlene Li, founder of Altimeter and author of Groundswell; Jan Schaffer, executive director of J-Lab; Megan Smith, vice president of new business development and general manager of Google.org of Google, helped attendees refine their ideas and connect with potential startup partners.

@NewLatina tweeted “#BlogHerBET was the best & most women-empowering conference ever. Outstanding 1-1 meeting w/mentor. Left ready 4 start-up!”

During the lunch session at BlogHer BET, Moira Forbes publisher of ForbesWoman (far right) asks panelists Megan Smith, vice president of new business development at Google (far left); Laurie Yoler, managing partner of Growth Point Technology Partners and Dana Mauriello, co-founder and president of ProFounder about conveying leadership in a crowded market.

Ferrier is the founder of LocallyGrownNews.com, an online startup she launched Spring 2010. LocallyGrownNews.com is an online community focused on news and information around local food and local economies. The initiative was funded with a $10,000 grant from the McCormick Foundation through the New Media Women Entrepreneurs program at J-Lab in July 2009.

Michelle Ferrier,
3/28/2011 2:31 PM