Unlike most digital firms or agencies, AD:60 is in the unique position of both helping established brands and start-ups launch new products, while at the same time managing and growing our own products. We have done all of this without raising any capital and we are proud of it.
Being in this unique position is amazing and it’s allowed us to run the gamut of what it takes to launch multiple successful business across many different verticals. I should point out that we’re not against raising money and in some instances have even thought about it. But what shocks us (or at least me “Alex”) is how much the industry instantly gives creditability to companies that do. This is why when watching a recent keynote from industry loved-slash-hated speaker Gary Vaynerchuk at this years Big Omaha convention was so refreshing.
During his opening, he made the following remarks: “There’s a dangerous thing going on and I want to kill it right here in Omaha; I am going to fundamentally go everywhere I can and kill this,” Vaynerchuk said. “When you raise money you haven’t won sh**…The amount of people that are cheering and thinking they’ve accomplished something because they’ve raised money in a financial bubble, because idiots like me are going around and investing in things, is ludicrous. It makes no sense.”
As you can see the title of this article are not “our words”, but this idea of raising money seems to be becoming a reality for large venture capitalists as well. Recent articles from Techcrunch and Business Insider point to the fact that today’s market of investing into startups has drastically changed. No longer are large venture funds participating in Seed rounds or even Series A. Instead these $4 – 10+ million dollar investments are more growth equity for established companies or in some cases to support companies that were perceived winners and are burning through cash faster than they are meeting expectations.
Some blame the overall slow acquisition market we are currently facing, but in reality it maybe that young entrepreneurs are just about growing real companies. In either case, we definitely recommend that any growing or establish company take the hour and watch this keynote and see why Gary Vaynerchuk feels marketers need to realize ‘For the first time ever your ears matter more than your mouth’.