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MaRS Courses and Guides

Find articles, videos and courses on building your startup. Stay tuned for a fully searchable and discoverable library coming soon.

Stages of the sales funnel

Read time: 3 mins The sales funnel is a metaphor for the sales process from initial contact to final sale. The funnel has five stages: lead, prospect, qualified prospect, committed and transacted. Toward the bottom of the funnel, time to closing decreases and the probability of the sale occurring increases. … Read More

Startup financing: Venture capital (VC) and private equity

Private equity is a relatively new term. It can cause confusion as some in the investment industry use it to only refer to investing. Others use the term to describe the entire asset class of venture capital, buyout and mezzanine investing. The CVCA, Canada’s Venture Capital and Private Equity Association, … Read More

The marketing mix in marketing strategy: Product, price, place and promotion

The marketing mix is the set of controllable, tactical marketing tools that a company uses to produce a desired response from its target market. It consists of everything that a company can do to influence demand for its product. It is also a tool to help marketing planning and execution. … Read More

Impact investing

Impact investing refers to the growing movement looking to invest in ventures that create a positive social and environmental impact and that are financially sustainable. Impact investments range from producing a return of principal capital to offering market-rate or even market-beating financial returns. Figure 1 shows how impact investing spans … Read More

Social innovation

There is no universally accepted definition of social innovation. MaRS uses the definition put forward by thought-leader Frances Westley of SiG@Waterloo: “Social innovation is an initiative, product, process or program that profoundly changes the basic routines, resource and authority flows or beliefs of any social system. Successful social innovations have … Read More

Consumer digital health

Consumer digital health comprises solutions and services that use digital communication technology and are designed to meet the needs of consumers through health education, wellness and disease management. These products involve significant consumer (or patient) interaction and are typically accessed via the Internet―either by personal computer or mobile device. For … Read More

Lean startups

The lean startup concept was invented by Eric Ries, and refers to an efficient method for startups to build their products. The approach emphasizes: using free or open source tools; developing and testing prototypes with customers early; and rapidly incorporating customer feedback as product development continues. By using lean startup … Read More

Business models

MaRS Market Intelligence has compiled these links to extend your thinking about your startup’s business model. Here at MaRS, our advisors use Alexander Osterwalder’s Business Model Canvas as a basis for discussions about business models. Clients who are new to MaRS are encouraged to check out the following links: Business … Read More

Wearable Tech: Leveraging Canadian Innovation to Improve Health

Wearables are small electronic devices, often consisting of one or more sensors and having computational capability. They are embedded into items that attach to the body, such as a user’s head, feet, arms, wrists and waist. They can resemble a watch, eyeglasses, clothing, contact lenses, shoes or even jewellery. Wearables … Read More

Impact Investing in Canada: State of the Nation

Canadians are faced with persistent social and environmental challenges that require cost-effective solutions. Our future ability to meet growing needs in education, healthcare, energy, climate change, and the inclusion of vulnerable populations such as seniors, people with disabilities and new Canadians, requires an integrated approach to link and unlock economic … Read More