Behind the Scenes: The True Reality of Working with Startups vs. Shark Tank

Behind the Scenes: The True Reality of Working with Startups vs. Shark Tank

Is Working With Startups Really Like What You Seen On Shows Like Shark Tank?

Yes… and no. I have worked with a number of startups, including several who appeared on Shark Tank and received offers. Shows like Shark Tank, although definitely enjoyable, can really “glamorize” startup culture.

I’m here to break down what it’s really like working with startups, both as a Founder of several businesses as well as someone who has pioneered a digital marketing agency catering specifically to startup ventures.

business men in suits discussing investment opportunity for startup venture

I know startups, intimately. I’ll never forget my first experience working with a startup company. I was just out of college and looking for my first “real” job where I could get valuable experience in marketing (and life in general)! I landed a pretty sweet gig at a local company who had actually appeared on Shark Tank back in April of 2015.

Although Budsies CEO Alex Furmansky received an offer from both Daymond and Mr. Wonderful, he ultimately did not accept either – and he still went on to grow a wildly successful business.

Working with Budsies sparked my love of startups, and startup culture. When I divulge to someone my passion for working with startups, I usually receive the same responses:

“Isn’t working with startups super risky? They could be out of business tomorrow!”

“Why work with the little guys when big brands will pay you so much more?”

Every big corporation was once “a little guy.” I don’t just have a passion for marketing. I have a passion for bringing my clients’ dreams to life. I love watching a business grow from a small company to a multi-million dollar empire.

I love being able to play an integral role in that growth. I have worked with many of “the big guys” too and what I’ve discovered is that the dedication, energy, and excitement of early-stage Founders is simply unmatched.

I love that energy. I’m here for it. I remember growing up my mom always said, “Love what you do and you’ll never work a day in your life.” That is the absolute truth.

And I love what I do. Being surrounded by entrepreneurs who have the same passion and energy for their businesses that I have for growing them brings me so much joy. I didn’t choose a career in marketing, marketing chose me.

Working with startups is hard. There are many challenges. There are good days, and bad days, and some really, really bad days. Another Founder once said to me, “There are many decisions you can make – but quitting is not one of them.”

women discussing startup growth and desire to be on a show like Shark Tank

The most successful entrepreneurs I have worked with are those with that mindset. They are determined. They always find a way. They don’t take no for an answer. Giving up is simply not an option.

Every opportunity and every mistake is a learning experience. Not every Founder will go on to grow a wildly successful business like Alex did.

Many early-stage Founders lack the resources and support to do so. That’s where having a seasoned marketing partner like High Caliber Digital Marketing Solutions and The Startup Strategy can make all the difference.

We are not just another “marketing agency.” I have been on both sides of the coin. I have launched businesses as a Founder, and I have scaled businesses through strategic marketing initiatives.

I know not every Founder will succeed – but if you are determined and believe you are “the needle in the haystack,” I want to speak to you.

High Caliber Digital Marketing Solutions and The Startup Strategy is so much more than just a full service marketing agency. We are invested in our clients, and aim to be partners right alongside them in their venture.

If that sounds like something you could be interested in, reach out to today. Let’s have a conversation. I’d love to hear more about your vision and your business.

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About The Author: Lauren Elizabeth Gulli

Founder and Chief Marketing Officer Lauren Elizabeth Gulli launched High Caliber Digital Marketing Solutions based on her core belief: every ambitious startup deserves an equally ambitious marketing partner.

With over a decade’s worth of experience, her innovative approach and cutting-edge digital marketing strategies are unprecedented. She is passionate about delivering solutions that drive massive growth and success for her clients.

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