Noah Parsons

Before joining Palo Alto Software, Noah Parsons was an early Internet marketing and product expert in the Silicon Valley. He joined Yahoo! in 1996 as one of its first 101 employees and become Producer of the Yahoo! Employment property as part of the Yahoo! Classifieds team before leaving to serve as Director of Production at He is a graduate of Princeton University.

Noah devotes most of his free time to his three young sons. In the winter you'll find him giving them lessons on the ski slopes, and in summer they're usually involved in a variety of outdoor pursuits.

Noah is currently the COO at Palo Alto Software, makers of the online business plan app LivePlan. You can follow Noah on Google+ or on Twitter.

Recent Articles Published by Noah Parsons


Introducing Lean Planning: How to Plan Less and Grow Faster

Today, I want to introduce you to a new concept for starting and growing successful companies: Lean Planning. Lean Planning is a set of tools for discovering a business model that works, building an action plan to test your assumptions, creating financial models and a plan for a viable business, and tracking your performance so... Read more »


The 7 Key Components of a Perfect Elevator Pitch [with Infographic]

Whether you are trying to raise money for your business or just want to perfect your business strategy, a solid elevator pitch is essential. Read more »


How to Write a One-Page Business Plan

It's actually a very good exercise to trim down your business plan to the absolute minimum—it forces you to trim needless words and communicate your business idea clearly, with minimal clutter. Read more »


How to improve your business plan with one simple addition

We’ve all been there. We have come up with an idea for a new product or service that we think we can sell to our customers. We have written what we think is a bullet-proof business plan. We’ve gone ahead and built the new product, or purchased new inventory, or expanded our store assuming that,... Read more »


No competition? Not possible!

Your business idea is brilliant. Nobody else is doing it. You’ve got no competition. It’s sure to be a gold mine, right? Maybe. One mistake many new businesses make is thinking that just because nobody else is doing exactly what they’re doing, their business is a sure thing. The smart thing to do is ask... Read more »


What Makes a Successful Business Plan?

Every year, I spend a lot of time reading and judging  business plans for business plan competitions. I have read some great plans and some not-so-great plans, but that is how it always turns out in any business plan competition. I thought it might be useful to talk about the most common deficiencies that have... Read more »


Can your brand be a luxury brand?

As little as 5-6 years ago, computers and cell phones were purely utilitarian devices. That is, they were used to get tasks done. They weren’t always very pretty to look at and certainly not things that you necessarily craved – unless your inner geek needed whatever was the latest and greatest technology. “Sexy” was certainly... Read more »


Friday TV: Start-up Junkies

If you’re looking for a little Friday distraction or are curious what it looks like inside a venture-funded startup, set aside a few hours and catch some episodes of Start-Up Junkies on Start-Up Junkies is very reminiscent of the 2001 movie, also a fun technology start-up documentary about the first Internet boom of... Read more »


How to Evade the Email Tsunami

Does your company receive hundreds or even thousands of emails every day? How do you ensure that every correspondent gets a response? The New York Times focused yesterday on the problem of too much email and how to handle it, highlighting a few possible solutions gleaned from both technology leaders of today and from the... Read more »


Why Competition is a Good Thing

Talking to small businesses and entrepreneurs writing business plans, I find that business owners often wish that they had no competition. Businesses usually are thinking that with no competition, the entire market for their product or service will be theirs. I don’t think that is the case – especially for newstartups that have truly innovative... Read more »

Lessons to be learned from The Apprentice

The latest series of The Apprentice commenced on BBC 1 on Wednesday last (March 26, 2008) with the latest batch of candidates seeking to work for Sir Alan Sugar, founder of Amstrad. While the programme is both entertaining and dramatic in equal measure, it also provides a wonderful insight into teams, team dynamics, and how... Read more »


Turn customers away and grow your business

If you follow the Duct Tape Marketing blog, you’ll know that one of John Jantsch’s core strategies for small business marketing is to define your ideal customer. Today he turns that notion upside down and asks readers to define who you don’t want as your customer. This is good advice. In fact, turning customers away... Read more »


How to write great copy for your website

You don’t know what’s going to work on your website. What copy is going to work. What layout is going to work. What colors are going to work. Is it going to be better to put a product image at the top of the page or the bottom? Should it be on the left or... Read more »


Don’t just Talk the Talk, Walk the Walk

I live and work in the (relatively) small town of Eugene, Oregon. This is a town where supporting local merchants is taken very seriously and where the local Saturday farmers’ market is always crowded. I very much enjoy supporting local merchants and do so whenever I have the option. Buying local has many benefits including... Read more »

News Interview with Tim Berry

Tim was interviewed yesterday after his presentation at eBay Live in Boston. Click here for the video interview. — Noah Read more »

Visit Us at eBay Live

Palo Alto Software is at booth 951 at eBay Live, please stop by. We’d love to show you our wares. Palo Alto Software founder Tim Berry is speaking on business planning for eBay businesses — meaning how to increase sales and profits with business planning — this afternoon at 3 pm, in the “Business Planning... Read more »


About our Authors: Tim Berry Founder and President of Palo Alto Software and a renowned planning expert. He is listed in the index of “Fire in the Valley”, by Swaine and Freiberger, the history of the personal computer industry. Tim’s days are filled with writing at his blog  Planning, Startups, Stories and contributing regularly to... Read more »


How to Write an Effective Marketing Plan

Contributed by Alan Gleeson. A marketing plan is a core component of a business plan. It relates specifically to the marketing of a particular product or service and it describes: An overall marketing objective A broad marketing strategy The tactical detail related to specific marketing activities The various costs associated with these activities Those tasked... Read more »

Attention Inventors

The American Inventor series is back with a $1 million prize, so dust off those prototypes and submit your entry. The New York Times has more on the story. Read more »


Every Business Plan is Wrong

by Tim Berry As you develop your business plan, you have to realize that your business plan is wrong. All business plans are wrong. Plans are about the future–and nobody gets the future right very often, so keep the plan fresh and watch closely as reality moves forward. A planning process constantly watches the difference... Read more »