I'm an open book and down to talk about anything! I've been on one crazy journey the last 3 years and I want to unpack it all here.
I know slack invested in yac. How integrated are slack and yac at this point and is yac tech responsible for voice features in slack (huddle)?
We have a pretty tight integration with them that let's you play (and speed control) Yacs directly inline as well as invoke recording right from Slack as well. You also get your standard Yac transcription showing up in Slack too which is great for search!
Could you break down what was the biggest challenge you faced each year ?
Curious also how much time/$$ went into building the product prior to launching? Was it bootstrapped?
Why do you see yourself needing funding for this project? is it to compete with Whatsapp?
Let's see for the biggest problems each year...
2019: Product & Raising - Getting the product to a point of being stable and closing our seed round in Dec. It's a wild story, but we actually had a term sheet that got revoked just days before Christmas since we weren't going to move our company to the valley. So at one of the most hectic times of the year, we had to go find a lead investor. Fortunately we did. Shoutout to Pat and Chris from Active Capital.
2020: Covid - since the start of the pandemic we've seen 600% YoY growth which is great, but also a lot of growth very quickly for a super small team. Managing that plus everything else Covid brought along was tough.
2021: Going from startup to real business - at every point in a company's life they exit the "startup" stage and begin a new chapter where they become a real business (paying customer, detailed processes, focus on long term vision, etc). That was us at the beginning of the year and learning to navigate that is a challenge in that it's something new to us at Yac.
Prior to launch we had spent $13K of our own cash on building the product & actually intended to bootstrap it forever...
At the time we were full tilt on our design agency, SoFriendly and Yac was actually built as a lead gen tool for that to show folks "Hey look at the stuff we can do" on the product side.
ProductHunt had their first Makers Festival in fall 2018 and we saw it as the perfect time to launch this marketing stunt. Built it over Thanksgiving break with the $13K we could pull together.
The reason for getting funding...
We realized quickly that half of the battle of scaling & growing the company is networking.
Coming from Orlando, FL where we had LITERALLY 0 connections to anyone in tech or VC, we saw this as our opportunity to meet some folks who can unlock doors.
The other reason is that venture funding allows you to move very quickly and put the best people in place to succeed!
Your site says the 500 start ups are using Yac - what acquisition channels are you using to get these customers?
Right now mainly just Twitter to be completely honest & majority of our users are inbound. One thing we've found to be super helpful is our comparison pages & case studies.
For example, with 500 Startups they were big fans of WhatsApp voice messages for personal and work.
When they saw our comparison page "WhatsApp vs Yac" they were quickly able to see Yac is a better, B2B, version of a behavior they already like & were familiar with.
congrats on the raise! how'd you get to writing your first angel check?
I was actually sent the company from the Twitter account VCBrags! I had been thinking about angel investing for a while and this seemed like the right opportunity. The founder and I did a call where he really sold me on the vision plus I love that I was able to get in at the ground floor.
awesome! sounds like a quick turnaroud