WRITTEN Submission Template
[Company Name] - [Tweet-Length-Description]
Describe your company in one or two sentences. Your objective is to help the judge determine what “lense” to look at your venture through. Is this a medical device that could save lives but likely require 10 years to reach fruition? Is it a mobile app aimed at helping college students? Is it enterprise software that could change how business is done at Fortune 500 companies?
First, in one or two sentences summarize what personal experience or qualifications you bring to this venture?
Second, in a sentence, tell us what actions have you already taken to validate that you have a repeatable, scalable business model?
What are the customer segments that make up your target market? For each customer segment, provide a one sentence description of who they are and the attributes that make them relevant to your venture. The more specific, the better.
Under each customer segment’s brief description, provide 1-2 “customer archetypes”, (short descriptions of individual customers). Make it personal. Give us their names (fake names are fine). Paint a picture of the relevant facts about them that relate to the pains they have and how they can gain from your solution.
This section has four sub-sections, be sure to fill in each and label them.
Pains: What are the problems you are solving for your customers?
Gains: What are the benefits your venture delivers that solve the target market’s pains.
Features: Describe your solution’s features in one sentence. It should be clear to a layperson that these features deliver the gains that alleviate the pains outlined above.
Product Status: In one sentence describe the version of the product you are currently developing/testing. This is a startup competition so almost everyone will be pre-product. In some cases teams will be pre- prototype. But knowing where you are in the product development process is critical.
Marketing & Sales
- Get - What channels will you use to get customers? How do you know they are cost effective?
- Keep - How will you keep/retain customers? What will your customer service experience be like (automated, self-service, personal assistance, etc.)?
- Grow - How will you grow more revenue from existing customers?
In one or two sentences briefly describe some of your typical competitors.
Next summarize for us your company’s competitive advantages vs these players. Are you cheaper? More convenient? Offer premium features your competitors do not have? Remember that superior competitive advantages tie back to the pains you highlighted earlier.
How do you make money? How much do you charge? Do you have one or multiple revenue streams? From which customer segments is the revenue generated?
Briefly summarize the major cost centers for your venture for the next six months. For each applicable category below, detail your top expenses and their estimated cost.
- Capital Costs - Sizable, one-time purchases of equipment/materials/resources. i.e. food cart, land, computer equipment, etc.
- Fixed Costs - Are unchanged across different applications/do not scale on a per-unit basis with your product. i.e. salary, rent, insurance, etc.
- Variable Costs - These costs vary depending on the amount of production of goods or services. i.e. materials used for each new item produced, staff-hours clearly tied to delivering another instance of the product, etc.
Briefly describe who are the most important companies your firm will be interacting with? What value do you get from each? What value do they get?
Briefly describe what are the most important activities for your venture to succeed? Don’t make the mistake of being too generic. For instance, sales & marketing is important for all ventures, so saying that will not clearly communicate anything about your venture. But if your venture requires a dynamic ability to spot trends and purchase keywords ahead of those trends, that is something specific to your sales & marketing effort worthy of highlighting.
Briefly describe what are the resources, assets, and advisors most vital to your company’s survival? Such resources tend to be either financial (startup capital), physical (equipment), intellectual property (customer lists, patents), and human resources (special talent).
Briefly explain what you will do in the next three-six months to systematically test your assumptions and increase your venture’s odds of survival. What will you do with your $10,000 in seed funding from this competition?