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Event Startups: Does Excitement Mean Success?

By Julius Solaris
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A few months ago I was very excited to invest a small capital in Eventasaurus. It so happens that Eventasaurus does not exist anymore. Here is what I learnt from this failure.

I was quite thrilled a while ago when I got approached by Eventasaurus. The service was innovative back in July and I really thought it could make a difference for event professionals.

My post attracted a lot of attention.

After a few months, I decided to invest what is peanuts for regular investors (but quite a lot for a person who works his butt off) in the company. The announcement was made 6 months ago.

Why Did I Do It?

I've always been fascinated by event startups and we had an agreement with the company I could have become a startup advisor.

I had lots of ideas for the tool and could have helped in many ways. After all I've been talking about this stuff for a while and run a successful tech product for the event industry myself.

Therefore the risk in the investment was mitigated - at least in my mind - by the fact I could have influenced the roadmap.

Competition

Lots of competitors arrived almost immediately. Which is not big news.

In tech, barriers to entry are almost non existent, therefore someone coming up with the same idea is inevitable.

I covered a few of the competitors on this blog like Crowd.fm, GetPromotd and others. Impartiality was saved at all times 🙂

Requiem for a Dinosaur

A few months later the product was dead. I won't get into details of what happened.

The company has released their post-mortem here.

Let Me Inspire You

I am going to share some learnings from my failure as an investor.

I cannot speak for the startup as they will have their own learnings, but I can certainly speak for myself.

 

Lesson number one: Never invest into someone else's company/product/service if you have your own.

This is the biggest mistake I've done.

I would have been better off investing that amount of cash on a Facebook campaign or website redesign - it would have paid 300% the initial investment.

I am sorry there is no direct application of this lesson for those of you readers who work with events, but I am sure you can find some inspiration in it anyway.

 

Lesson number two: Never invest for your ego.

I must admit I loved the idea of being an advisor for a startup. I also loved the word "investor". It came with lots of authority.

You know what? I don't think I am an investor anymore - I prefer being a blogger.

Moreover, companies who want my advice usually pay good money for it, therefore I am better off as a consultant rather than an advisor.

 

Lesson number three: Listen to those around you.

This investment was discouraged by those around me. I should have listened. I didn't mostly because of point number two.

In Conclusion

Would I spend again that amount of money to learn the above three lessons? No.

It was just a trivial, stupid mistake.

Am I pumped up for my own projects? You betcha!

I know I can focus on offering event lovers advice and solutions for their tough job. I know how to do it and I'll stick to it.

Was it Eventasaurs' fault? Of course not, no regrets against the guys who spent lots of time on the product development.

Now the time to share your sympathy in the comments!

about the author

Julius Solaris
Julius Solaris is the editor of EventManagerBlog.com, he is an international speaker, author and consultant.
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