What it's like to pitch your startup idea on TV: My experience with theSkimm's "Get Off The Couch" Competition

I am very excited to share a BIG announcement! But first, the backstory…

Back in June, I was reading my daily email from theSkimm, which is always part of my morning routine. For those who aren’t current Skimm’rs, theSkimm makes it easy to stay on top of world news, all in a short and easy to read email. In this particular email, they announced that they would be hosting a competition for entrepreneurs, and I submitted an application to be part of the contest. The founders of theSkimm were hosting the “Get Off The Couch Competition,” aptly themed due to the fact that Carly and Danielle launched their company from their couch 5 years ago.

Giv-Now was an idea that I carried with me in the back of my head for quite a while, but didn’t know how to go about making it a reality. I always thought, “There must be an easier way to volunteer!” and was inspired by my own experience of struggling to find local volunteer opportunities that I was qualified for. Thus, the idea was born for a platform that connects charity organizations to volunteers, provides mobile training, and allows for-profit orgs to get involved as sponsors.

A few weeks after applying to take part in the competition, I received a request from theSkimm production team for a phone interview! During that call I shared my vision, and the hopes I had for Giv-Now in the future. A month after that, I received the very exciting email confirming that I was officially a contestant in the competition, and that I would get to go to LA to pitch to Carly and Danielle and be part of a mini series! I was in complete shock and was so excited. Me? They chose ME?!

The two weeks that followed were a whirlwind; I made travel arrangements, I built a scrappy Squarespace website, researched logos and color schemes for my brand, and put together a 45 second pitch that I would present to theSkimm founders in LA during the filming of the show. As this was my first time ever pitching an idea, and I did not go to business school, I relied heavily on episodes of Shark Tank as my main research method, Damond - you are my fav!

The filming experience was unreal! The cast of the first two episodes were all housed in the same room during the shoot, and while we waited for our filming segments, we swapped business tips and ideas, we ate lunch together, and our conversations spanned from politics to online dating. Not only was this a great opportunity to share the word about our products and ideas, but to meet other amazing female entrepreneurs!

All in all, the whole experience was a dream come true. I’ve always admired Carly and Danielle for their entrepreneurial success and amazing company culture, and have followed theSkimm for the past 4 years. It was such an honor to meet them in person, and to hear their enlightened feedback on how I can make Giv-Now better.

I would be remiss if I didn’t pour my heart out and share my appreciation of my wonderful friends, family, and partner in crime who are always encouraging me to follow my dreams and providing me with undying support. Carly and Danielle, thank you for offering this incredible opportunity. If you are interested in coming on board as an investor, teammate, volunteer, or charity partner, please get in touch!

Without further ado, you can head here to view my episode...no spoiler alerts, I’m the 3rd and final pitch! In order to view, you must be logged into your Facebook account. Short on time? No worries, this episode is hosted on Facebook’s new WATCH platform, which is solely comprised of short videos, and the whole episode is less than 7 minutes long. Make sure you tune in, and also be sure to check out my fellow contestants who quickly became my newest badass female entrepreneur friends! If you haven’t done so already, feel free to head to the Giv-Now site or Facebook page.

P.S. If you don’t already subscribe to theSkimm, you most certainly should, and you can do with one easy click here!

Featured on my episode:

  • Milx - Our first product is the bra for new moms -- a nursing/pumping bra that you can wear all day…and even workout in.
  • Girls & Co - A line of contemporary dolls with smart, ambitious, positive role models
  • Giv-Now - A platform that connects charity organization to volunteers, provides mobile training, and allows for-profit orgs to get involved as sponsors.

Some behind the scenes pics...