Sixty Seconds to Sell It

November 23, 2014

With $10,000 on the line would you be able to sell one of your talents, an idea or product to a panel of seasoned venture capitalists and angel investors? Could you do it in five minutes? How about 60 seconds? On November 18, that is exactly what 12 Pacific Northwest startup entrepreneurs did at the Washington Technology Industry Association’s (WTIA) First Look Forum in Bellingham.  The startups were incredibly diverse in the industries they represented and their previous business experience (think interior design to human cell preservation, and college graduate to CTO level of diversity).

Although there was a packed room full of talent, these four pitches were my favorite:

PurpleWall – an online platform enabling residents to have their dream room remotely decorated by an interior designer who complements their style and budget.

If only I knew this existed when moving into my apartment. Let’s just say I could have saved a few days (okay weeks) perusing miles of IKEA.

React Mobile – transforms the way people call for help in an emergency, and lets your family and friends follow your whereabouts.

 My favorite thing about this app is the peace of mind it gives not only the user but also their selected contacts – I can definitely see it being a parent pleaser.

SpeechAce – an app that teaches correct American English pronunciation and eliminates accents one word at a time.

 An Italian version of this would have saved me from multiple strange gelato orders (I bet you didn’t know the words “peach” and “fish” differ but just one letter).

VanAir Design – developed an enhanced interior door that allows air to flow through it while shut, and maintains visual and acoustical privacy in an aesthetic manner.

 Realizing less than half of my room’s air is circulated at night caught my attention immediately, and now a door that circulates air while closed is no longer an oxymoron with this design.

The entrepreneurs that delivered these presentations all had something in common: they were quick but compelling, informative but to the point, and most of all they got the audience’s attention and engaged them. Could you sell your product or service in 60 seconds?


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