Software product development agency TechSlice CEO Juliana Buonanno made her reality TV debut on “The Blox”, a startup accelerator registered for the web.
Buonanno was one of 20 contestants chosen from 5,000 applicants for the show’s first season which is the brainchild of a reality TV veteran Weston”We s” Bergmann.
Although skeptical at first, in the end the CEO of TechSlice said Technically she had connected with a new community of entrepreneurs and gained a new appreciation for being back in the start-up phase, presenting and selling the dream.
The aim of the show is to find “the biggest startupamong the candidates. The 20 founders lived together and competed in Kansas City for a week last summer.
“I went there thinking I had some stuff in the bag,” Buonanno said. “But marketing hadn’t been something [TechSlice] had focused on. [“The Blox”] showed a lot of importance on the engagement of the prospect, the storytelling. Truly showcasing what you do is just as important as the services you offer. In short, I was not at the top but I learned a lot.
She said she plans to bring the lessons and experience of her time on “The Blox” to her own TechSlice Demo Days for Baltimore entrepreneurs, produced in partnership with VC and an engineering company. acceleration. W Companies.
The show is part of the promotional material of the Bergmann app for entrepreneurs, BetaBlox. The app offers several services, one of the most interesting being the virtual accelerator that bears the app’s name, BetaBlox. The Virtual Accelerator offers consulting services on how to get your startup off the ground; connection to the app’s network of mentors, alumni and investors; and educational tools that include the reality show “The Blox”. All that Bergmann asks in return: a 5% stake in your company.
Other premium services do not require giving up equity in your business. Costs vary for contracted services such as accounting, video production, or software development. Or a user can pay a fixed $200 to access educational materials. There are also free services like the reality show, meditation and music.
The accelerator is something that the company BetaBlox done since 2012 in Kansas City. The app is more of a digital hub, and reality TV a marketing tool — one that Bergmann is very comfortable with, given his time as a contestant on “The Real World: Austin” and “The challengewhere he won both “The Duel” and “Rivals II” seasons. During his career in reality television, he earned just over $300,000, some of which he used to become a founding investor in BetaBlox.
Going through the reality show experience itself, even just for a week, gave Buonanno a respect for the pressures reality show contestants have to go through. It’s hard enough to pitch and be judged; doing it with five cameras in your face doesn’t make it any easier.
Getting over the jitters of the whole reality TV experience was like being in the shoes of a day one founder again, Buonanno said, and she imagines that’s how founders feel during Demo Days. powered by TechSlice. When working with these companies, she plans to pass on not just the marketing knowledge she learned on “The Blox,” but the wisdom of how to handle the pressures of being an entrepreneur.
The show “is a firestorm or a good pressure test for what it means to be an entrepreneur,” Buonanno said. “I think running a business is really that pressure cooker environment. You do things that take you out of your comfort zone. I would say this experience was great for those who were refining their idea or already had a product, and they can then refine their message. »
All episodes from the first season can be seen on the BetaBlox app, although they may appear on YouTube or Vimeo in the future. Check out the trailer below:
Donte Kirby is a 2020-2022 corps member of Report for America, an initiative of The Groundtruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation. -30-