Blog 5: Pitch Deck
From our initial idea of Last Call, to our pivot to EZ Eats, I learned so much throughout the whole semester about the process of creating a startup from scratch.
One of the biggest takeaways I got from this class was things are always changing and shifting around and making sure everyone is on the same page is important for growth. My group pivoted 2 different times over the course of the semester. Each pivot took a lot of effort to go back and change our ideas and re-validate based on the new idea. The more validation you have, the more likely people will believe in your idea. This solidified how important getting the problem solution down first and validating these completely, otherwise you will have to go back and re-do the entire process from the beginning. Before our final pitch deck, our mentor Gloria highlighted how our revenue model only focused on promotions, not any other purchases. We had to find a solution to this without having to change our entire financials as we had a day or so before our final pitch. We ended up changing our revenue model to receiving a 15% of all orders made through our platform which conveniently matched the $2.40 ASP we had before.
Something else I learned in my classes is how difficult it is to find your first customer. Reaching those 2.5% who are innovators is going to be the hardest since no one is using your product. Then having to cross the chasm to early majority. I learned how much time and effort you can put into attracting those initial users, so making sure you really nail your target market saves a lot of time.
My favorite parts of the class were when we had to validate and go out into the real world. This was difficult due to Covid-19, but if anything that highlighted how hard it can be to get good feedback and validation from people you are interviewing. Learning to approach strangers and talk to them is an important skill that this highlighted. I often found people to be in a rush and because of that we had to be really concise with the questions we asked, otherwise they would give quick and uninformative responses. I also really liked the division of the gates. This was very helpful in building the idea in small increments and made the whole process a lot less overwhelming.
My team was strong throughout the semester and very rarely did we ever get into conflicts. Everyone got a long well and we each brought experience in different aspects of the project. We all put in equal amounts of effort into our project. We have no photos unfortunately because we would often meet over Zoom and only sometimes in person.
After taking this class, I gained a lot more insight into what goes into the creation of a startup. The risk, hardship, and uncertainty is always lingering and having to overcome this is essential. Once I graduate, I feel I would pursue a normal day job and work there for a few years before being comfortable with the risk of joining or creating a startup. It is nice to have some cash under your belt when creating a startup to fund yourself to a certain point, and I feel this is a good strategy. I could definitely see myself working on the venture investment side of startups later on, as there is less risk involved with still the potential for a big return on your investment.
I want to thank Gloria, Alina, and Rick for a great and informative semester that furthered my knowledge of being an entrepreneur and the startup world in general.