Summer fellowship enables student entrepreneur to launch startup

Summer fellowship enables student entrepreneur to launch startup


I used to think that you
can’t learn entrepreneurship. And I’ve been amazed by how
perfect of an environment an MBA actually is
to start a business. Confi is working to
be the go- to resource for young women seeking
advice on health topics that can be uncomfortable
to talk about, like gynecology questions,
sexual health, relationships, communication. The social enterprise
fellowship really made it possible for us to
get Confi off the ground. I don’t think I’d be able
to have interns this summer. It would have been much
more difficult to invest in some of the web
design aspects to it, to be able to form an LLC. We are an online platform. What makes us
really unique is how we’re approaching our
content generation. We are doing hundreds of
surveys and focus groups. Our number one goal is to
provide credible information. And the way to do that is having
doctors intimately involved. We initially reached
out to them just to interview them to
help with our content. And we’ve been amazed at
how the doctors actually ask, how can I help? I love that you’re doing this. I would love to tell
my patients about this. You can’t really do anything
until you have good content. You can’t get users. You can’t get revenue. But now that we’ve been
getting great feedback on that I’m comfortable
and shifting more towards the next steps
of getting more users. Everyone talks about digital. It’s easy to forget that you
can actually go out and talk to student groups. You can go be a
part of conferences. Even going to networking events,
I’ve met hundreds of people this summer. So the more traditional
marketing methods are actually pretty
effective as well. People aren’t willing to pay
for information these days. So we recognize that we need
to generate revenue somehow. I initially thought
maybe ad based revenue, but we also don’t want
banners covering our web site. Now we’ve landed more on
trying to find a main sponsor and also we’re
exploring e-commerce. I think the most challenging
part of launching a startup is you’re suddenly
responsible for everything. And you have to
learn everything. When you have a
more traditional job your friends and family
know your job title. They see you’re gone
during working hours. They don’t really know what you
do, or how good you are at it. Whereas suddenly when
you start a business, all of your friends and family
and hundreds of strangers can see what you’ve
done and have an opinion on are
you doing it well, should you be doing
something different. You’re really opening
yourself up to feedback from every angle, which can be
a little uncomfortable at first. Now I think it’s
great, because I get to talk to so
many different people and they’re interested
in what I’m doing.

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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