Example of a startup CEO newsletter

Kyle Linton from https://www.nicotrax.com spoke last night. One thing Kyle mentioned is using a “newsletter” or “status update” via email to remind people – especially important people like potential investors, mentors, industry contacts, etc. – that you exist. Also to show them the progress your startup is making. This is a great technique, so let’s look at a beautiful example…

So there is a guy named David Shaner who was in the EEP 6ish years ago. His EEP team came up with an idea, and he decided to pursue this idea after graduation – he started https://www.get-offline.com. David has pivoted several times and is now breaking through to major success. If you would like to hear him talk about some of his experiences after leaving the EEP, this is a great video of a talk he gave in HQ Raleigh a couple months ago:


Here’s an article he wrote describing why he started Offline:

Anyway… David is great about sending out update emails. He sends them maybe once a quarter. Here the last one I received, just to give you an example of what an update email can look like…

Hey man—

Hope you had a great end to 2017 and start to 2018. I wanted to send a quick update/summary on how we closed out 2017 and where we’re heading in 2018.
Our Vision
Offline’s vision is to serve 50 markets by 2020.
Our goal for 2017 was to complete a turn-key model (team, tech, audience and revenue) that could be replicated in 10 additional cities in Q1-Q2 2018.
2017 Highlights/Summary
While we achieved a lot this year, we were not able to achieve our overall goal of completing our single market model, and we will carry that goal forward to this year as our singular focus.
That said, we made a lot of exciting progress in 2017. Here are some of our major highlights:
Financing: Closed a 1MM round led by McClatchy (NYSE: MNI)
Team: Taylor Smith and Jeff Kilman joined as key executives. 3 of our 4 executives have now been CEOs.
Audience: Grew audience 10x from first half to 2nd half of 2017. We now reach 61% of millennial women in Raleigh-Durham monthly through Facebook alone.
Revenue: 4x’d revenue from Q1 to Q4, validating demand for our branded content model. Built case studies within 5 key verticals. Launched new Studio page for 2018 sales push.
Strategic partnerships: Inked and deepened relationship with McClatchy. McClatchy is leading our bridge financing with $345k/$400k closed or committed, and we are piloting a tech integration to power one of their entertainment sites.
2018 Objectives
We are carrying forward our singular focus on completing our single-market model.
  • √ team
  • √ audience
  • √ technology
  • => digging in to reach a $500k run rate from one market only
Challenges/how can you help?
Challenge: during the latter half of 2017, we focused the majority of our efforts on completing our single-market model in Raleigh-Durham. That came at the expense of progress in Charlotte and Nashville. Ultimately this was an opportunity cost we were willing to take.
Help: introductions to anyone at companies in Raleigh-Durham or Charlotte who you feel would be a good fit for our brand studio (healthcare, auto, retail, things to do, food/bev, real estate, fitness).
Help: introductions to anyone who has experience monetizing media platforms.
Help: if you have experience with startup P&Ls, I’d love to gut check our R&D and Content investments to make sure we’re making good capital decisions.
Help: if you have any connections at major publishers (Vox, Gannett, Newscorp, etc) or platforms (e.g. Facebook’s Journalism Project), I’d appreciate introductions.
Thanks so much for your continued support.

Comments are closed