Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Kym Huynh from WeTeachMe.
In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.
WeTeachMe is Australia’s first trusted community marketplace to list, discover and book in-person workshops. Think of it like Gumtree for workshops.
For people who run workshops, we help grow revenue, save time and reduce costs by automating the entire admin and booking process. We took Cupcake Central from 14 hours of work every week to less than 15 minutes every week (while increasing their revenue by 400 per cent).
For the everyday person, we make it really easy to discover and book workshops. Whether it be cooking, painting, sports, music and language, we now list approximately 8,000 workshops Australia-wide and are adding more every day.
What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?
WeTeachMe is bootstrapped by its four founders: Kym Huynh, Demi Markogiannaki, Cheng Zhu and Martin Kemka. In fact, WeTeachMe launched at a cost of less than $400.
We then realised that we were going to need a lot more funds to take it to where we wanted to take it; time to get creative. So to finance its growth, The WeTeachMe Team got creative and ran events in both Melbourne and Sydney to raise enough capital to take further design and develop the platform.
So far, WeTeachMe has a big concentration in Melbourne. To rectify this, The WeTeachMe Team will tour Australia to sign up workshops Australia-wide. Our goal is to have 16,000 workshops by the end of 2013.
To date, WeTeachMe is financed completely through revenue generated from its own customers although the team is open to idea of raising a round of funding to grow the business and its operations.
What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?
The biggest challenge facing WeTeachMe today is how to scale efficiently. At the moment, The WeTeachMe Team are doing things that don’t scale; we’re mindful of the fact that we’ll need to constantly optimise and improve our sales funnel.
On the other hand, The WeTeachMe will activate the consumer side of its marketplace soon and we’re excited about how we’re going to help the everyday person discover and develop into a more well-rounded, interesting individual.
How do your differentiate your business from your competitors?
For people who run workshops, WeTeachMe doesn’t just process online bookings, it is an end-to-end solution that manages the entire workshop admin and management experience. From communications to marketing, database building to financials, WeTeachMe is like hiring a dedicated administrative assistant for a fraction of the price.
For the consumer, WeTeachMe is more than just a place that lists workshops. WeTeachMe is a place where people can create their own educational life journey and become what we see is the 21st century renaissance person. WeTeachMe facilitates this by creating a suite of tools that encourage people to track, measure and continue their own journey. We’re activating our consumer end of the market in a few short months and can’t wait to reveal what we have in store.
What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?
We’re in love with Mailbox’s snooze and emailing handling features as it helps us get to inbox 0 incredibly fast.
We’re also in love with Sunrise which makes the experiencing of managing our meetings a pleasant experience. We particularly like their automatic icon attributions for dinners and phone calls. The devil is in the detail we always say!
We’re also big fans of the HipChat application which makes communication between team members a breeze.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?
In a fight, it’s hard to win against a person that never gives up. Be that person.
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