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Lies, Damned Lies and Startups - Tara Hunt

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lies, damned lies
  and startups


  by: tara ‘missrogue’ hunt
who am I and why I’m
qualified 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)
lie #1



         the cake is a lie.
Lies, Damned Lies and Startups - Tara Hunt
Lies, Damned Lies and Startups - Tara Hunt
Lies, Damned Lies and Startups - Tara Hunt

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Lies, Damned Lies and Startups - Tara Hunt

  • 1. lies, damned lies and startups by: tara ‘missrogue’ hunt
  • 2. who am I and why I’m qualified to talk about this stuff: • co-founder + CEO Buyosphere.com • been raising $$ for >1yr • raised $200k F&F • believed the hype • lived in SF for 4yrs • made a crapload of mistakes already • serial entrepreneur (but first startup)
  • 3. lie #1 the cake is a lie.
  • 8. there is no cake, dude.
  • 11. startups are really fucking hard.
  • 13. startups are soul crushing.
  • 14. startups are life shortening.
  • 15. why? • you will work longer hours • you will face rejection daily • you will be paid peanuts (if anything at all) • everyone will think you are crazy • there will be MANY days that you doubt yourself and everything you are doing.
  • 17. the entrepreneurial venn desire to delusional A change the status quo D C B audacity A. those that go postal B. dictators C. serial killers D. startup entrepreneurs
  • 18. lie #2 you are your own boss
  • 19. a week in the life of a startup founder
  • 25. saturday http://www.flickr.com/photos/milkyworld/3128291642/sizes/l/in/photostream/
  • 27. fact: you will wake up in a puddle of your own sweat several nights a week because you realize you are completely fucked.
  • 28. how to deal: 1. know that you will be rejected. 2. understand that you will underestimate the number of times you will be rejected and how long it will take you to raise $$. (insert completely fucked night sweats here) 3. ask rejectors for feedback (REAL feedback) 4. ignore most of said feedback* but not all of it 5. seek mentors and allies (note: this is the most important point I make this entire presentation) * knowing what to ignore is not easy
  • 29. you are not alone.
  • 30. it takes conviction http://www.businessinsider.com/pandora-vc-2010-7
  • 32. take note: all of this is BEFORE you give away a portion of your company to investors...
  • 33. lie #3 raising money means success
  • 34. raising money = becoming someone else’s bitch $$ af ter all it IS their
  • 35. success= find your product/market fit before you run out of money. T. IS. ALL. THA
  • 36. get creative with funding!
  • 38. it’s cute for kids, sad for grownups.
  • 39. “Paul Graham only invested in us, when he heard about the Obama O's story. And he figured, well these guys are like really creative, smart entrepreneurs; they'll probably change their idea.” AirBnB Founder, Brian Chesky
  • 40. Question I ask myself every single day: what are my Obama O’s?
  • 41. alt. funding ideas • Friends & Family - your network is stronger than you know (we raised $192,000) • Go lean - how can you pare down your operations and personal lifestyle? Do it early. Lower the burn. • Hold a fundraiser - make it awesome. Indiegogo? Profounder? Kickstarter? • Sell your stuff on eBay - It’s a short term sacrifice. • Make $$ 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.
  • 42. 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.
  • 44. tips on finding product/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!
  • 45. Are you ready to make the ultimate sacrifice? nly one ther e is o a nswer
  • 46. lie #4 the startup world is a meritocracy
  • 47. it’s not just about working hard. (though there is hard work involved)
  • 48. there is nothing fair about this path.
  • 49. both brilliant + both contributed SO much to science tesla died broke edison died rich
  • 50. and what of those with better ideas but without resources who weren’t heard at all?
  • 51. 1880s or 2010s, this hasn’t really changed.
  • 52. you can do EVERYTHING right and still die broke.
  • 53. I know. I’m a real downer.
  • 54. but true entrepreneurs aren’t in it for the fame and fortune, are we? hope fo r both) (th ough we
  • 55. q: so why are we doing this again?
  • 56. a: fuck if I know.
  • 57. but here I am. and I can’t imagine doing ANYTHING else. it’s an unhealthy, but beautifully necessary obsession.
  • 58. because without us crazy, delusional people who do this the world would be a boring, stagnant place.
  • 59. thank you for being crazy, audacious dreamers. xo
  • 60. Tara (@missrogue) Hunt ceo/co-founder, Buyosphere tara@buyosphere.com 514-679-2951 www.buyosphere.com www.horsepigcow.com