What inspired you to start HelloWoofy.com?
HelloWoofy.com is on a mission to help every small business owner around the world have a fighting chance competing head on against the unlimited marketing budgets of giant corporations. We want to help with providing data science and AI driven technology for the price of a cup of coffee a day. SMBs deserve to share their incredible stories and creativity but bogged down by gruntwork, they couldn’t until now.
When did you know it was the right time to launch?
We knew this was a need having personally worked on several small businesses or startups and running an agency of sorts where we helped other SMBs with their social media, marketing copy-writing, and much more. In 2020, “winging it” should not be a strategy a business owner uses while their biggest competitors spend unlimited time and capital on making data driven decisions.
How do you handle risk?
We look at the possible outcomes of whether taking the risk now, seeing the success later would put us in an unfair advantageous position or not. If yes, then we jump right in and make the idea, product, and vision work. It’s what a startup does when pushing the limits of what is accepted versus what could push an entire civilization forward into the future.
This is not your first time founding a company—what’s different this time?
I’ve learned from numerous mentors and from my own failures. The lessons learned keep me going forward as I make informed data driven decisions. It’s what we expect our customers to do as well as we build data driven technology to help them have an unfair advantage at digital marketing using data science and AI driven software.
Any surprises or key learnings?
Building a startup isn’t a straight road. You may lose the very people you love along the way. You may have to put your entire net worth on the line.
But there is no other way to achieve greatness or success if you’re not 200% in.
You become “numb” after a while and just keep going no matter what because you have people needing leadership, limited resources, and others who believe in you...you must be decisive at ALL times.
What’s been the biggest challenge when founding HelloWoofy.com?
Balancing personal and professional lives...which basically doesn’t exist. You must surround yourself with people who understand that 100%, especially when you need to put in 20 hours or more a day into building your vision.
What’s the #1 skill you think entrepreneurs need to succeed?
An appetite for risk so no matter what happens, you’re ready and willing to handle any situation.
What’s your team culture like?
Our team is globally located and we pretty much work around the clock as a result. Entrepreneurship or taking risks is always at the forefront, as well as our love for dogs! That’s one of the inspirations behind the name of our company; we believe in supporting “underdogs” or SMBs around the world...like your best friend.
What is your superpower?
Doing whatever it takes to get the result needed with however much energy or drive required. My girlfriend often thinks I am crazy for it and supports that 100%.
Do you have any unusual routines or habits?
I tend to drink my one and only coffee I make a day for the duration of the day...I am a slow drinker.
Do you have any other hobbies/things you like to do? What do you geek out about?
Most people don’t know, but I love building furniture and using my carpentry skills at making new inventions at home after I simulate what and how it may work in my head (I often make several simulations before actually starting to cut wood and create the invention). I've made a number of projects, including a self-cleaning litter box that doubles as a bench.
If I took a screenshot of your phone, what would your favorite apps be?
- Stripe: I love seeing customers making orders in real time;
- Fiverr: I am constantly talking and working with talented people around the world;
- Mailchimp: Love seeing campaigns and open rates after launching newsletters;
- Toby: An old virtual dog app (I have a real dog named Buel as well);
- to name a few.
If you could give yourself one piece of advice 5 years ago, what would it be?
Invest now. Reap the rewards of the seeds you sow today, tomorrow. Just start.