Give First

8/10/2021

Ep 45: Digital Ocean’s Carly Brantz on leading marketing at three Techstars unicorns

Ep. 45
“We get a tremendous amount of traffic to our website every month from people who are just searching for different ways to do things, learning different ways to code. It might not even be on our infrastructure, but we provide that content,” says Carly Brantz, Chief Marketing Officer at Digital Ocean.This is just one of many ways that Digital Ocean, which helps developers easily build, test, manage, and scale applications of any size on a complete cloud platform, Gives First to its customers, and even to people who aren’t its customers (but might one day be). Because when you give people what they need now, then when they do need your product, even if it’s a year or two from now, they’ll think of you.This could be just good marketing strategy, but for Carly — and for Digital Ocean’s founding team, Ben Uretsky, Moisey Uretsky, and Mitch Wainer, it’s more than that. It’s about love.David remembers when Digital Ocean was in the Techstars Boulder Accelerator, back in 2021: “Moisey and Ben and Mitch and everybody in the accelerator said love. They talked about love being the differentiator. We love our customers. We want them to love our product. They got this funny look from a lot of mentors and a lot of people like, ‘Hey, that's not really a way you can build the company.’” But for Digital Ocean, love turned out to be a winning strategy.Carly confirms that love is still a big differentiator for Digital Ocean: “Really everything that we do, we always say that it starts with community and ends with love.”Listen for more about how community, content, and love can be a hugely successful marketing strategy — and why it’s never too early or too late to join Pledge 1%.Techstars personnel and/or guests who speak in this podcast express their own opinions, and not the opinion of either Techstars or any company discussed in this podcast. This podcast is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities are for illustrative and/or informational purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investor or prospective investor, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by Techstars.Certain of Techstars funds own (or may own in the future) securities in some of the companies discussed in this podcast.
8/3/2021

Ep 44: Fast Forward’s Kevin Barenblat on running an accelerator for tech nonprofits

Ep. 44
“Techstars for nonprofits” is a pretty good description for Fast Forward, an accelerator for tech nonprofits. The similarities are many — like Techstars, Fast Forward provides mentorship, network, and resources to tech founders, designed to help them succeed. The key difference is that Fast Forward focuses on the specific needs of nonprofit companies.“Our entrepreneurs have all the challenges of tech startups, and all the challenges of nonprofits,” says Kevin Barenblat, Cofounder and President of Fast Forward.Listen as David and Kevin talk about the amazing results Fast Forward has achieved — the 60 nonprofits that have completed the program have impacted almost 90 million lives and raised $275+ million in follow on funding — and how Kevin actually measures success. Because while these metrics are important, Kevin also believes in taking risks and supporting entrepreneurs that he believes in. Techstars personnel and/or guests who speak in this podcast express their own opinions, and not the opinion of either Techstars or any company discussed in this podcast. This podcast is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities are for illustrative and/or informational purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investor or prospective investor, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by Techstars.Certain of Techstars funds own (or may own in the future) securities in some of the companies discussed in this podcast.