lies, damned lies and startups by: tara ‘missrogue’ hunt
who am I and why I’mqualified to talk about this stuff:• co-founder + CEO Buyosphere.com• been raising $$ for >1yr• raised $200k F&F• believed the hype• lived in SF for 4yrs• made a crapload of mistakes already• serial entrepreneur (but first startup)
why?• you will work longer hours• you will face rejection daily• you will be paid peanuts (if anything at all)• everyone will think you are crazy• there will be MANY days that you doubt yourself and everything you are doing.
the entrepreneurial venn desire to delusional A change the status quo D C B audacity A. those that go postal B. dictators C. serial killers D. startup entrepreneurs
fact: you will wake up in a puddle of your own sweat several nights a weekbecause you realize you are completely fucked.
how to deal:1. know that you will be rejected.2. understand that you will underestimate the number of times you will be rejected and how long it will take you to raise $$. (insert completely fucked night sweats here)3. ask rejectors for feedback (REAL feedback)4. ignore most of said feedback* but not all of it5. seek mentors and allies (note: this is the most important point I make this entire presentation) * knowing what to ignore is not easy
“Paul Graham only invested in us, when he heard about the Obama Osstory. And he figured, well these guys are like really creative,smart entrepreneurs; theyll probably change their idea.”AirBnB Founder, Brian Chesky
Question I ask myself every single day:what are my Obama O’s?
alt. funding ideas• Friends & Family - your network is stronger than you know (we raised $192,000)• Go lean - how can you pare down your operations and personal lifestyle? Do it early. Lower the burn.• Hold a fundraiser - make it awesome. Indiegogo? Profounder? Kickstarter?• Sell your stuff on eBay - It’s a short term sacrifice.• Make $$ in your free time - Pixazza, TaskRabbit, TaskHire, AirBnB, Kindle, deliver pizza (Alfred from Zappos did this), etc. (make it simple, mindless tasks)• Take out a loan! Nobody will own you.
earning the CEO badge: Your ONLY job is to keep the company going until you find product/market fit. ONLY job.* Your* Okay, that AND 10 gabillion other things. But this is the most important.
tips on findingproduct/market fit...• solve the right problem (http://uxmag.com/strategy/ you-are-solving-the-wrong-problem)• research and seek outside opinion (advisors are key)• eat your own dogfood...taste it! yeah, it sucks, right?• limit your market• get outside of your bubble• don’t commit suicide...hang in there!
Are you ready tomake the ultimate sacrifice? nly one ther e is o a nswer