We have gotten to the point of our project where we want to build a landing page for our b2b web based business to see how many users sign up. Over the past few months I have gotten a lot of good verbal responses from potential users that they would use our service but, before we start spending resources on building the entire site we want to be sure. The question that I have is building a landing page for a b2b web based platform and gathering sign ups a good way to gauge interest in the business?
One side of the network is going to be suppliers and the other side is going to be consumers. We need to have both sides use the service for it to work and we believe we are adding enough value to both sides to do so.
From a marketing standpoint for the landing page I was going to use Facebook marketing and also LinkedIn to directly target the users we seek. Our web developer said the landing page would cost around 1000$ and I was going to spend another 1000$ on marketing at first to see where that leads us and then reevaluate from there. If we can get our site in front of the eyeballs of our potential target customers, we believe the conversion rate to sign up will be high as it’s a free service for both sides.
Has anyone had any experience or advice that can help lead us in the right direction?
Hi all, this is my first post in this subreddit - I'm here because I'm new to startups in general, and have received an offer from a startup which the cofounders say is fair but my gut says is not.
Here's the story: the startup is "Company," and we'll call the two cofounders "CEO" and "CTO" (their roles). Myself, CEO, and CTO all just finished our Junior year at the same university, and we're all good friends. CEO and CTO started Company around 2 years ago, and after some pivots Company started getting some real attention and a bit of money through pitch competitions and such.
Last summer, I was doing an internship in the same city that CEO and CTO were working on Company, and since we're friends they asked if I could help them build out some of their proof-of-concept technology (neither of them know how to code, and I do). They offered $20/hour, and I spent the evenings and weekends of the summer building their proof-of-concept, which was good enough to secure Company a critical industry partner at the end of the summer. I loved the work and Company's mission, and CEO and CTO really enjoyed working with me. Last September, CEO and CTO decided to take the semester off from university to really focus on Company, and they offered that I join them in exchange for a 5% stake. I felt that this offer was a bit too low, and besides I was looking forward to returning to school, so I turned them down.
The fall semester goes by, and in the spring CEO and CTO return to school (they missed their friends, and also thought they could still work on Company while enrolled in classes). Just before the spring semester, they reach out to me about wanting to assemble a team of students to further develop Company's tech; they want me to lead that team, as they know I'm a responsible manager and I understand this part of the tech way better than they do. They said they'd give me 1% equity at the end of the semester for my troubles, and I was excited to learn more about new technologies and technical management, so I agreed.
To complicate things, also around this time CEO and CTO managed to attract several large angel/pre-seed investors, giving the company around $600k @ 3m pre-money valuation. As such, around a month ago when it became clear that we would have to extend our technical development through the whole summer, they offered to pay me a market-rate salary to join them full-time during the summer. I agreed, quitting the internship offer I'd lined up for myself as a result.
It's recently become apparent to all of us that, since CEO and CTO don't know how to code, I will actually be a critical part of the Company (essentially CIO) until much later this year when we try to raise a Series A. As such, CEO and CTO want me to take the next year off of school with them to work full-time on Company. And I want to join them, because I'll learn a TON in this role, I like working with them, and again I love Company's vision. This week, we've been negotiating the terms of my role/compensation.
Here's the tricky part: (bear with me here) I technically never signed any paperwork at all because I trust my friends, so as of now I don't technically work for the company, I haven't been paid, and I own no equity. I know, probably stupid of me, but CEO and CTO are genuinely trustworthy guys. Anyway, that means the contract I sign now must take into consideration everything I've stated above, and I just received my offer.
The offer: $25/hour backdated through the previous summer (totals around ~$8000). Market-rate salary (TBD) for all my full time work from here forward. 1% equity on an accelerated (1-year, ~3 month cliff) vesting schedule. I become the CIO until we raise a Series A (probably in 6-8 months), at which point the (heartless, haha) new investors will likely want to bring on a CIO with actual industry experience. I should note that I won't personally be building most of the core tech from here forward, because it's much more complex than the common databases/website/app you see in many tech startups nowadays (we need things like custom cloud architecture, custom computer vision algos, ML/analytics, visualization, etc.). We'll be hiring experts in these subfields, but I will be the one managing them and filling in all the inevitable gaps that arise when building a technical product.
Equity questions: When I noted that 1% seems low, they noted that that's all they've set aside and that giving me any more will require them to dilute current investors and will likely be a red flag to future investors (makes sense). However, I can't shake the feeling that, for the first employee and the only manager who knows anything about code, 1% is still really low. Not to mention the fact that they seem to want to recognize me as a co-founder, probably just because I'm their friend and that title is a nice thing to have had down the road, but still. For reference, CEO and CTO each have over 35%.
I understand that since CEO and CTO started the company, have really stuck with the vision through thick and thin, and single-handedly raised over half a million in funding, that they should absolutely have more equity than me. But is over 30 times as much still fair? I was thinking a first employee in my position would generally receive something along the lines of 3%, and if I was truly positioned as a new cofounder than that'd rise to around 8%. Again, I really am not sure how to make sense of any of this.
Does this offer seem fair for my existing/future contribution to the company? Is it true that there's really no good way for the company to issue me more equity? Thank you all so much for helping a newbie!
My friend and I are both software developers and decided to make a mobile app a couple months ago. We have been working on it after work and on weekends when we can. We are done with all the core functionality of the app for release one, but we still need to polish it. We plan on releasing in about 2 months.
We're not sure if we should release prior to seeking investors. The reason we'd like investors is we'd like to work on this full time and would like to add someone in marketing to the team. I'm worried that going to an investor too soon or too late will ruin our chances.
Has anyone had a similar experience? Any advice appreciated. Thanks.
I am working on a startup building EHR software. I am ready to build anything a doctor or his/her staff wants for free to get first few clients. I also promise to build something much better then existing ones otherwise it doesn’t make sense to switch. Do far i have been unable to find doctors or nurses who would like some extra features.
I have tried reaching out personally dropping in flyers, I have tried linkedIn, my university Alumni connections, but yet haven't found the right person.
I have just wrapped up first phase of a new web app wondering how I can go about marketing it. I would prefer some free marketing since I'm funding it myself. Would be interested to hear how your guys go about this.
A little bit about the web app, it's pretty simple idea with bare bones features, rusteyrooster.com. Here's my elevator pitch:
Have you signed up for a streaming service and want to share with your friends, but don't want to deal with all the hassle of managing costs, not to mention the fun chasing down that one annoying friend who always "forget" to pay. Well this app is for you. RusteyRooster makes sharing service subscriptions easy with your friends. We take care of the boring stuff, like managing the cost sharing, letting your friends know when you need to update account credentials so you don't need to message them individually.
He's currently at UC Merced on his way to get his bachelors in CSE. As of now, his finances are covered by his Dad and I so he can put full time on his work. From that, I've advised him to start building a portfolio for himself. He decided he wants to start with being a full-stack developer. He's working on that and seems to be doing okay.
He's into GRAIN (genetics, robotics, artificial technology, nanotechnology) and as the title says, wishes to create technology to better serve humanity. He wants to be an entrepreneur and I'm wondering what can he do to grant him the most success?
Any info would be greatly appreciated. And if you have any further questions regarding his situation, please feel free to ask.
I am in the process of creating a platform for youtubers and Instagram influencers. The platform still has a couple of months to be completed. However I have already started reaching out to YouTubers and the Instagram influencers and a couple of them are interested in signing up on my platform to reach fans. However I am not sure how to solidify a partnership with the Stars. Do I create a short contingency contract? Or do I just get verbal confirmation.
I am thinking of creating a very short contingency contract which is contingent upon getting over 50 YouTube stars or Instagram influencers and actually launching the platform. But I am not even sure what I would include in the contract.
A bit about me, I'm coming from a history of working for big organizations (5000+people, 40 hrs/wk, hourly pay, straightforward benefits/vacation time) so the start-up world is very new to me. I'm ready to make impact in a faster paced setting and really grow. I'm looking to finally get out of basic customer service roles and the "wearing many hats" environment will help. I've been looking for jobs with more established start-ups (15-25 people, series A) to "ease" me into this world.
An opportunity came up and it looks like I'd be employee #3 and I'd be handling all of customer success. Company turning 2 yrs old soon. CTO (#2 hire) looks very established but has only joined 5 months ago. Looks like she is involved with another company concurrently--is that normal?
Can I straight up ask how much revenue, how much funding, what timeline founder has for this company? All this info was not on Angel, but not sure if that's common for start-ups with less than 10 people. I have some questions about his linkedin and past companies as well--every project/company he's worked on is for only a little over a year. Is that just the resume of start up people? He is also pretty young, maybe 25. Founder has more of a sales/business dev/marketing background, rather than technical. I'm wondering what the company has been doing for the year before if CTO just joined? Is that a red flag? How does he plan to deal with the more established competitors, even among other startups? Does he have the money to pay me for the year? Are these fair questions to ask at the phone interview level?
Work/life balance is pretty important to me. What questions can I ask to judge this or get an idea of how much time he expects of me and how much vacation time there is? I get I may have to work more than 40, but I don't want to work more than 50hrs. I have hobbies. I also like to travel and in a long-distance relationship.
As I'm very new to this world, what other questions should I be asking to screen for good and bad?
Also, is 0.05-1% equity reasonable for #3 employee?
I've been working on a project for the past 1.5 years. The TAM is not big enough so I decided to turn it into a "lifestyle" business. It requires about 5-10 hours of work per week and makes more money than I'll ever need to pay basic living expenses.
I have been looking for the next project to work on. I decided I only want to work on very ambitious projects that can turn into a multi-billion company.
It has been very hard. I've worked through 2 ideas so far and I must say, figuring out an idea is as much of a rollercoaster as building a startup. You get super excited when you initially get the idea, then a closer examination later, it feels terrible when you realize the idea may not work after all.
Being stuck in this "in-between" phase really sucks. Life feels directionless because you are sort of roaming around trying to come up with ideas. As a result, life has generally felt pretty bad. Also, the fact that I feel like I'm not doing "real" work is demotivating since productivity (or at least the feeling of being productive) is a big source of dopamine in my life.
Do you have any tips for someone in the "search" phase? What should I be doing with my time?