In a bid to behave more like a start-up, we recently spent an evening at Startup Grind, a get-together hosted by Startup Melbourne that draws together a community of like-minded entrepreneurs and ideas-y types. It’s a great place for people to share stories and the challenges they’ve faced in turning their ideas into reality. It was also a good opportunity to work on our elevator pitch, since everyone’s second question is always “and, so, what are you working on?” For reference, the pitch goes a little something like this:
- Kit is a menswear startup that exists to give men a more efficient wardrobe;
- We’ve done a lot of consumer research and figured out that in most guys’ wardrobes they get 80% of their wear from 20% of their clothes, which leaves a lot of unused items;
- We solve that with Kit, which is a collection of clothes that all goes together, allowing you to get more life from fewer items of clothing.
We found that most people nodded vigorously through the first two points, but were a little unsure about the last one. This has us thinking that while people understand the premise, the solution we’ve provided isn’t enticing enough. We need a better hook.
Now the search has begun for a copywriter to help us refine the language and make the hook more compelling.
The night itself was to hear from Gen George, the founder of the job search platform Oneshift. She started the business while waiting for employment on the superyachts in France. When faced with a month without money or a job before her contract started, her survival instinct kicked in and now, a few short years later, it’s an award-winning company with about 50 staff. Some of her insights are definitely worth sharing:
- Test –> Fail –> Learn.
- 5 day, 5 week, 5 month plans.
- Be open to changes. Be ready to pivot from the original idea.
- Every 30 days, everyone in the company gets together in the board room to present how the last 30 went and how the next 30 will go. They discuss what they learned and what is planned.
- PR is great, but it’s not a sales tool. Being published helps authenticity.
- An investment round is like dating. Make sure you both share the same expectations.