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Name: Dale Pope

Age: 34

Location: Chicago, IL, USA

Name of Business:

Type of Business: Urban Entertainment Guide

What does your business do? is your online guide to urban entertainment. features over 10,000 entertainment listings plus an online travel reservation system for over 20 U.S. cities. is about discovering the perfect nightclub, finding the right restaurant, searching for activities and events, seeing the sights, discovering the arts, finding local attractions, tracking live music, and travel planning. Discover a City and get the Vibes on Nightclubs, Bars, Music, The Arts, Dining, Travel, Attractions and More! Based in Downtown Chicago, Illinois, is dedicated to finding unique and offbeat entertainment and nightlife information for today's hip, Internet-savvy, urban thrill seekers.

When and why did you start the biz?
February 26, 2001; announced the launch of its new Urban Entertainment Guide. was founded by two entrepreneurs who left challenging management positions in the IT industry to start their own company. Working in the IT industry allowed us to travel and experience entertainment in several cities across the United States. Already having over 11 years of combined IT and Entertainment experience and looking for new challenges, we decided to use our skills to build a one-stop entertainment guide.

Having witnessed the dot-com explosion and failures, we decided against the Venture Capital route. Instead, we opted to privately finance our venture and draw upon our experience in the IT and Entertainment industries to offer a unique online service. is able to provide these services by combining their own entertainment information and supplementing it through strategic partnerships and affiliations.

How Many People in Your Company?


Where's your office?
High-rise apartment building in Chicago, with excellent views of Lincoln Park and Lake Michigan.

What's the toughest part of running your biz?
I would say having to do multiple tasks throughout the day, week, month, year. It's all up to you, marketing, advertising, technical, promotion, finance, sometimes you just feel as though there's just too much to do and never enough time. Remember what everyone says about starting your own business, "You're going to work 16 hour days." Well, it's true, but actually it's also the part of the job that I love, the momemtum and pace is awesome!

What's the most fun part?
One of the fun parts of running your own business is knowing that everything my business partner and I have envisioned, created, promoted, and managed, all came from an idea. That's where it all began. It keeps us humble and yet it is the most rewarding part of our job. I get to also check out entertainment from cities all over the country, not a bad job at all.

Has your age been much of a factor in business?

Actually, I would say yes, it helps in my business to be hip to the city scene and the local trends. I believe people my age have a much better vision of what the Internet should be and where it should go.

Anything you would have done differently?
We had come up with a good business plan prior to starting our business, but I would have liked to have spent more time on the design of the website. We spent a considerable amount of time prior to launching our website, making design changes, color schemes, layout. I would say all the implications of designing a good website took us by suprise; we realized this is an art all to itself.

What's next on the horizon for you and your business?

I'm optimistic about the future of our company even in these radical economic times. We have the ability to make faster shifts towards other markets, which will hopefully allow us to remain competitive and innovative in uncertain times. will continue to provide unique entertainment listings and content, we will also begin to develop our B2B business in the areas of content licensing, syndication and web hosting.

What advice do you have for others who are planning to make the leap?

The advice I would like to give people is the following:
1. Do your homework; develop a good business plan.
2. Bounce ideas off of your family, friends, co-workers; this will help develop weaknesses with your idea and business plan and will allow you to gain their support, which you will need later.
3. Get financial backing before leaping, and be sure that you can live up to 8 months without a paycheck. (Actually the experts say enough for a whole business cycle.)
4. Find mentors or other leaders you can lean on when you might need an expert, as in accounting, finance, marketing. This was very helpful to us, being able to rely on other people's talent to help our company.
5. Don't look back, never think about what you could have done, or what you should have done, just continue going forward and do the best you can. Remember: it's life, have fun with it!

How do you use Idea Cafe to help you with your biz (and/or your sanity)?

I use Idea Cafe to get business tips on marketing, entrepreneurship, finance and I subscribe to the newsletter for featured articles on new leaders.

School (where, still in school, degree?)
Bradley Universtiy, B.S., Business Computer Systems; Art Institute of Atlanta, A.A., Music Entertainment Management

Prior jobs or business?

Project Manager/Personnel Manager with Ciber, Inc.; Team Leader/Business Analyst with American Management Systems, Inc.

Favorite food?
What else - Pizza

Anyone you publically want to thank or say Hi to?

I would like to thank the online community for providing me with an opportunity to launch my dream.

Contact Info:
Dale Pope
President & CMO

Your Website:




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