As you might have read, StartUp Weekend Limerick took place recently in the University of Limerick. 9 teams and over 70 people took part. Over the course of 54 hours some really interesting and worthwhile businesses evolved from an idea to a potential business. As with previous events there was a lot of energy and a severe lack of sleep (which is to be expected).
This weekend certainly was different from the previous weekend. Not only regarding the location (it took part in Limerick as well as in Clare) but also in the lessons learned. These were not just from a marketing viewpoint but also from the viewpoint of being involved in the business as a whole.
It’s pretty surprising how much you can achieve on Twitter over two days.
For any business starting up I would advise them to start using Twitter ASAP!!!!
Why? Well, it’s very simple. Not only can Twitter help you to conduct market research but it also helps you to find key decision makers, connect with them, ENGAGE with them and create a relationship. From my own standpoint the business I helped out was Surprizsavings. We harnessed the data collection power of SurveyMonkey (even with the free version you can find out some great customer data) and the promotional power of Twitter to get the survey out to a wide audience. A simple Twitter account also helped us connect with and have a phone call with the head of innovation at Bank of Ireland. Both of these things helped determine the most important aspect when starting a business… validation.
BlueChief Tip: Set up Twitter and start engaging with people straight away. Combine it with SurveyMonkey for powerful data collection.
These days there is no excuse for not having a website!
As with video, it is now easier than ever to set up a website. When it comes to online content, I see the website as the centre of your online brand and for a simple reason, you own it. Social networks are great for content but they are only tools and space that you’re renting (even if it’s free). A website is the cornerstone of creating a valid business online. As a result, it is important that you take time and get this right.
BlueChief Tip: When it comes to websites our TechChief, Keith O’Neill, has the following key tips
- Make sure the website is easy to navigate.
- Loading speed is crucial – People won’t wait around for a page to load so make sure your loading speed is as short as possible.
- Make sure the text is readable – If people can’t read your website’s content then they will leave your website… and never come back.
When it comes to presentations, be ready for anything
All the work done during a StartUp Weekend is focused on one thing… the pitch. You have four minutes to pitch your business idea to the judges and this can make or break your fledgling business idea. Four minutes isn’t a lot of time, so as a result you need to practice your presentation… A LOT. Not only does this help you become more efficient when it comes to delivering your message but it also helps you get ready for any questions or issues that occur.
As far as I’m concerned when it comes to presentations, be sure that you know what you’re talking about inside out and backwards. This helps you be prepared for any questions that you may be asked.
BlueChief Tip: When it comes to presentations and work in general I have started to live by the mantra of the 7 Ps:
Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance
Have a good playlist to listen to
It’s amazing how hectic things can get during a StartUp Weekend. That’s why when it comes to this event, as well as work in general, I follow this tip.
— Dan O Brien (@DanBlueChief) November 22, 2015
Music and the right playlist can help you:
- Calm down
- Get into the zone
What’s more, it is a great way to concentrate and cancel out the noise of the world around us. The best thing is that with access to tools like YouTube and Spotify the right playlist is at our finger tips. There are a lot of articles out there showing how scientifically music helps with productivity. At the same time it is important to remember that people are as unique as their own music tastes. What works for some might not work for other.
BlueChief Tip: Create a playlist of songs to help you get in the zone.
Challenge yourself and learn by taking part in a StartUp Weekend
There are some really interesting things you can learn from a StartUp Weekend – not only from marketing perspective but from a business and skills development aspect. Taking part in these events can help you focus on the key areas and discover a eureka moment. I have already started integrating some of these lessons into the way I work daily. If you have any questions please leave a comment. You can also follow me and StartUp Weekend Limerick on Twitter