A Guide to Working with Startups at The Media Kitchen

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We like to think we bridge Madison Avenue and Silicon Alley/Valley here at The Media Kitchen. We are attracted to innovative, inventive and entrepreneurial companies and have been working with …

We like to think we bridge Madison Avenue and Silicon Alley/Valley here at The Media Kitchen. We are attracted to innovative, inventive and entrepreneurial companies and have been working with hundreds, if not thousands over the years. There are some very important lessons we have learned and wanted to share them in this document. Much of the deck is a "talking" deck, meaning it was presented to the agency by Darren Herman in October 2013, so some slides have no words. Contact us for more context around the slides.

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  • @ericfranchi Love all of this Eric. Extremely valuable.
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  • Well done. Some thoughts:

    1. Purely coincidental, I posted somewhat of a mirror image of this concept for the other side (startups who want to break in to agencies). The exact same day. Freaky. http://ericfranchi.com/post/62914977723/advice-for-startups-breaking-through-to-ad-agencies
    2. I think that slide 11 - TMK's focus on startups as a cornerstone - is a big differentiator.
    3. As far as tips 1-4 it is important to get the relationship with the founder(s) who own the business side of the equation. They are the ones who can redline the product roadmap for an amazing opportunity.
    4. I think it's really important for agency folks to realize the symbiotic nature of this whole relationship. Agencies want new and innovative ideas for their clients. Startups want (need) traction (both in revenue and number of clients/campaigns) and product/market fit. The intersection of that is where great stuff can happen. I have so many examples of this both at Undertone and at other companies. As do you Darren in that slide 29.
    5. Protip for agencies related to the above. Offer to help with case studies/quotes/co-presentations. Sometimes hard to get approval for, but they are one of those things that can put you over the top when others are waving cash at the startups. Sort of like why a startup would work with one VC over another. What value can you bring?
    5a. Related to the above on how you can stand out. Making intros internally to your peers if you think there is a fit is another one of those things that is incredibly helpful for a startup who may not have a big sales team (or one at all). I know Darren fosters this at TMK and the other shops but this is not a rule.
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  • 1. HOW TO WORK WITH STARTUPS & WHY IT MATTERS 1
  • 2. WHAT IS A STARTUP? 2
  • 3. A 'startup' is a company that is confused about -- 1.What its product is, 2.Who its customers are. 3.How to make money. As soon as it figures out all 3 things, it ceases to be a startup and then becomes a real business. Except most times, that doesn't happen. DAVE MCCLUREVIA QUIBB 3
  • 4. STEVE BLANKVIA QUIBB A startup is a temporary organization used to search for a repeatable and scalable business model. "Temporary" is emphasized because a startup's goal is to cease being a startup, to graduate up to being a large business or to fail and move on to another opportunity. An early stage venture that isn't capable of this type of rapid scale-up is a small business, not a startup. I also emphasized the verb to "search" because it is a key distinction from small and large businesses that operate in mature markets.These businesses execute known business models while a startup searches for an unknown business model - in order to disrupt existing markets or even create knew ones. You use very different techniques to search effectively and efficiently for something unknown than you do to execute something that is already known. 4
  • 5. FOUNDER(S) SMALL TEAM TECH BASED VENTURE CAPITAL 5
  • 6. ven·ture cap·i·tal noun 1. capital invested in a project in which there is a substantial element of risk, typically a new or expanding business. 6
  • 7. 7
  • 8. 8
  • 9. THESE COMPANIES ARE NO LONGER STARTUPS 9
  • 10. WHY STARTUPS 10
  • 11. WHY STARTUPS INNOVATION INVENTION CREATION ENTREPRENEURIAL NO BOUNDARIES BIG IDEAS 11
  • 12. 88 TIPS FOR WORKING WITH STARTUPS 12
  • 13. 1WORKING WITH INNOVATIVE COMPANIES IS NOT EASY 13
  • 14. 1 WORKING WITH INNOVATIVE COMPANIES IS NOT EASY YOUNG, IDEALISTIC, NON- PROCESS ORIENTED, PERSONNEL CONSTRAINED UNDERSTAND THIS. DON’T TRY PUTTING A SQUARE PEG IN A ROUND HOLE. BE OPEN. 14
  • 15. 2YOUR PRODUCT IDEA IS NOT ON THEIR ROADMAP 15
  • 16. 2YOUR PRODUCT IDEA IS NOT ON THEIR ROADMAP SELLINGYOUR IDEA TO A STARTUP CONSTRUCT A BRIEF DOCUMENT THAT WILL OUTLINE EXACTLY WHAT YOU WANT FROM THE STARTUP. 16
  • 17. 3EXECUTION TIMELINES 17
  • 18. 3EXECUTION TIMELINES TAKE THEIRS AND MULTIPLY BY 3 MAKE SUREYOU BUILD ENOUGH PADDING INTOYOUR TIMELINES. 18
  • 19. 4RELATIONSHIPS MATTER 19
  • 20. 4RELATIONSHIPS MATTER HAVEYOU TRIED CONTACTING A “HOT” STARTUP? START BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS WITH VENTURE CAPITALISTS AS THEY AREYOUR ACCESS POINT FOR STARTUPS 20
  • 21. 5BE NICE. 21
  • 22. 5BE + PLAY NICE. YOU MIGHT BEWRITING A CHECK, BUT THERE ARE PROBABLY 10 OTHER PEOPLE WHOWANT TO ASWELL. 22
  • 23. 6NOT EVERYONE IS ENTREPRENEURIAL. 23
  • 24. 6NOT EVERYONE IS ENTREPRENEURIAL. DON’T SWIM AGAINST THE CURRENT. FIND THOSE WHO ARE AND GIVE THEM THE TOOLS TO SUCCEED. 24
  • 25. 7FEEDBACK CAN BE TRANSFORMATIONAL. 25
  • 26. 7FEEDBACK CAN BE TRANSFORMATIONAL. PROVIDING STARTUPSWITH CONSTANT FEEDBACK ULTIMATELY HELPS THEM SUCCEED. PROVIDE HONEST AND THOUGHTFUL FEEDBACK AS TO WHY OR WHY NOT 26
  • 27. 8VISIONARY THINKERS 27
  • 28. 8VISIONARY THINKERS SOMETIMES IT’S HARD TOWRAP YOUR HEAD AROUND A VISIONARY IDEA CHALLENGEYOUR STAFF CONSISTENTLY WITH BIG IDEAS. STRETCHING THE MIND HELPS GET TO BIG IDEAS. 28
  • 29. + + + + 29
  • 30. FURTHER READING..... 30
  • 31. IFYOU DO NOT HAVE A TWITTER ACCOUNT, GET ONE TODAY. MANDATORY. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO TWEET, BUT LEARN HOW TO CONSUME CONTENT ON THE FEED. 31
  • 32. @davemcclure @MikeBrownJr @chrisfralic @garyvee @boughb @ganeumann @ceonyc @caro FOLLOW @ 32
  • 33. 33
  • 34. THE MEDIA KITCHEN WWW.MEDIAKITCHEN.TV @THEMEDIAKITCHEN PRESENTED BY DARREN HERMAN, CHIEF DIGITAL MEDIA OFFICER @DHERMAN76 OCTOBER 2013 34