My Unique startup business - Web 2.0 startup

by Edge88
34 replies
Hello Warriors,

Some of you may have seen me around here for a while now. I had to take a few months away because I had a major 2-part surgery (40 days in the hospital). But today I come here for a little help and to share the Startup business I've been working on during this down time.

A little intro: I'm a Finance and Entrepreneurship college senior. I have been an entrepreneur since first year of college when I won second place in the pretty prestigious and competitive Cornell Big Idea Competition (the business I competed with went on to fail in real life )

So here's my new startup.

www.FansUnitedFC.com

Basically in internet marketing terms it is a membership model. Myself and my co-founders have created a web community where we hope to get 50 thousand fans to join for a yearly membership fee of 29.95 Dollars. With this membership fee, the users will collectively choose a professional soccer team to acquire and manage (that's right a real life soccer team... fantasy soccer meets reality). This team will be acquired in the Brazilian league (most bang for the buck in soccer talent). Our members will be able to decide on everything, from starting line-ups to firing the coach if they so please, to contracting new players to strengthen the team. In all essence our members will become a team's President.

For those of you from England, you may already be familiar with this startup, as there was a successful one done in England.

So, from you guys. Any entrepreneur would be stupid to turn down an opportunity to ask for feedback and opinions. So please give me yours. But most importantly I would like ideas of how to market my startup through the Internet! I have tried a few things (namely Youtube) and we are ready to try and reach out to blogs with press releases. Should I jsut post our press releases to those paid press websites? That may be a good idea.

Anyways, thanks for reading this far. I hope you find interesting.
#business #idea #startup #unique #web
  • Profile picture of the author Chris Grable
    What's soccer?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Chris Grable View Post

      What's soccer?
      Very Funny! lol. We have analysed this a bit more then it may seem when you realise We're selling soccer in the Unites States.

      As it turns out, the hispanic population here is expected to be around the 50 million mark when the census comes out. That's the size of england or a bit less than Italy! but the Internet in the united states has a lot more penetration than Italy (lol that's the actual word these guys use Internet Users - Top 20 Countries - Internet Usage).

      Furthermore, The Seattle Sounders for example are known to sellout very often, outselling hte local baseball and football teams. LA Galaxy afforded Beckham, and the NY Redbulls just built a beautiful state of the art "Soccer specific" stadium, and it's only a matter of time before they contract a big soccer name.

      So yes, we have analysed the market profusely. It's a legitimate startup. Founders include one IBM Business Consultant, Two Ivy Business students, and one Computer Science.

      We are also about to get interviews on sports shows. Got this through connections and our press package.
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  • Profile picture of the author reynoldscorb
    Very interesting concept. How long has your site been active and how many fans do you have signed up?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by reynoldscorb View Post

      Very interesting concept. How long has your site been active and how many fans do you have signed up?
      Thank you! We have been toying with the website for a while, close to a year. And we tried a bit of marketing as a test to see how users adopted the concept (a few months ago). It went pretty well, users were signing up and using our forum. We slowed down because I was very ill but now it's full steam ahead again.
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      • Profile picture of the author JackBenson
        I like the concept, besides that I don't have much to add.

        Have you thought of letting people choose how much they want to contribute, maybe in multipliers of the 29.95? So if someone wanted a bigger vote they could contribute $1,000 and get the equivalent of like 30 votes.

        Maybe not the direction you want to go but could maybe get you there faster?
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  • Profile picture of the author xInd
    That's a wicked idea, I like it. You need to get a lot of exposure on it right away though, because if it takes you a long time to get to your member quota, you won't be able to start the season and the first members will be stuck hanging in there till next year and paying again or something you'd have to figure out there... I would suggest offering that people can buy more than one seat, and have a fixed number of seats, only allow 1 per person to start off with, and they check a box if they are interested in purchasing more if all seats are not filled in the first phase. Then you can get an idea of how many people are ready to up the ante to get the team off the ground in case you're short, and give you some warning to notify people that you need more members before they start worrying about their membership fees etc. You'll also have a better idea whether you should send out more requests to invite friends as it will give you a bit more data to work with to plan things.

    I would look into magazine advertising, a lot of sports enthusiasts are heavy into the magazines.
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  • Profile picture of the author xInd
    Might I suggest an aggressive online video campaign separate from the youtube campaign for other good traffic video sites, followed by making a prominent presence in the social networking sites and blogosphere, along with some viral tell a friend sites and pages... etc...

    I would mainly suggest setting up an authority site with a TON of content setup properly for SE's and viral RSS aggregation, so that you get yourself a really big spread over the whole Internet. I'm in the midst of putting together an exclusive launch for an all in one system based on many of the best marketers from this forum, my 15 years of SEO/SEM/IM marketing work experience and a team of pro's putting it together in conjunction with the best of the best of the best plugins and systems ever created around wordpress. We've modified the hard code, the databases and much more, so match all the latest trends and most effective methods online so that it spreads like wildfire and gets listed everywhere. Attempting to accomplish something like this yourself (or PMing me about getting in with our exclusive group when we open the 10 spots) would be a good idea. It would also allow you to have lots of your stuff like youtube channels and facebook pages well interlinked with each other to pass good link juice around to your main site...

    I have a great idea that would be something I haven't seen done yet, but I would be surprised if it hasn't in some way somewhere... But make an app, either a facebook app or a flash game or both or whatever... For sports card trading, of your team, and you can use the graphics from that for the website for looking at player profiles and stuff...
    Then later on when it's more popular you can sell printed copies as souvenirs.

    I would make an advertising campaign targeting online games of all kinds of sites, all soccer / futbol games you can find... Clearly anyone playing a soccer game online is going to have a higher chance of being interested in your offer.

    Will it be restricted to the USA? I'm from Canada, can I still have a spot if I end up interested in it on a personal level?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Xception-Industries View Post


      ...Will it be restricted to the USA? I'm from Canada, can I still have a spot if I end up interested in it on a personal level?
      Thank You! For both posts. Lots of good marketing ideas as well as ideas for features we can offer. I will read it in more depth and consider all your suggestions. As for paying for ads in magazine, I figured we have a concept that is interesting enough to get articles written about us, so we wrote some pre-written articles for our press package.

      Anyone with a soccer related blog I have some top quality content for you

      To answer your question, the membership is not limited to US members. Anyone can join! So we would love to have you as one of the world's newest soccer franchise president
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      • Profile picture of the author xInd
        Originally Posted by Edge88 View Post


        Anyone with a soccer related blog I have some top quality content for you
        I would be happy to feature your content on the subdomain soccer of my growing authority social blogwork site. blog network blogwork... heh. just came out that way figured I'd run with it. Probably get you to the first page in google with the new system we've tweaked. My testing previously had no troubles getting first page out of 68 million results, with everything else we've put into it now, our free user blogs should be Google monster keyword and local targeting machines. We should be properly opening registration again and announcing a final official launch in the next few days. Domain already has some age and PR from previous stuff so that helps too.

        I will reserve soccer.xind.ca for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author excoder01
    Did you create this based on the World Cup event?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by excoder01 View Post

      Did you create this based on the World Cup event?
      Well, it was created to give soccer fans a complete new level of involvement. But we timed the marketing efforts to coincide with the World Cup because soccer fever will be at an all time high here in the US during the next couple of months.
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  • Profile picture of the author ErnieB
    If its targeted towards the US, then why is your site calling it football when it is actually soccer?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by ErnieB View Post

      If its targeted towards the US, then why is your site calling it football when it is actually soccer?
      It gives it a more authentic feel. Also the word football is only used in conjunction with the word "club" when referring to a soccer team. Finally real soccer fans, the ones willing to pay up, appreciate the fact that were calling it football. After all that's what it is

      Finally we are not limiting to USA users. That's just our primary target market. So the word football is more universal
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  • Profile picture of the author MaryT
    may i suggest to add some videos with the main team you target playing, try to have a recording of their recent results, or the greatest memories of the club

    also, I'll suggest you give them a glimpse before they even register. by providing some history, photos, videos, ..etc

    my 2 cents
    Mary
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by MaryT View Post

      may i suggest to add some videos with the main team you target playing, try to have a recording of their recent results, or the greatest memories of the club

      also, I'll suggest you give them a glimpse before they even register. by providing some history, photos, videos, ..etc

      my 2 cents
      Mary
      Hey Mary, didn't mean to ignore your 2 cents

      This is a good idea to give the fans more enthusiasm for their new team. However we havven't started targeting any teams yet, and which team will be acquired will be up to the members, not up to me. So I guess once we start narrowing it down, we can do what you suggested. We will certainly make it as exciting as possible for our members.

      Thanks!

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author joetheseo
    Very cool idea! Start building massive links and driving traffic to it! I want to see some results
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by joecrupie View Post

      Very cool idea! Start building massive links and driving traffic to it! I want to see some results
      Joe, a startup entrepreneur is likely to fail many times before they succeed. But on the other hand I have failed a few times already And this is probably the best startup idea I've had.

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author Sam Tirut
    Banned
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Sam Tirut View Post

      I agree that you are going have to get the 50,000 members within a short amount of time otherwise members who paid are going to cancel or they may demand a refund because its moving too slowly..50,000 is a huge number of members for any membership site..and you are going to need a massive campaign and massive exposure to get to that number quickly. OR you could try to some kind of free trial period and then they pay once you get to 50,000 because then everyone is more excited and ready to go...ready to buy the team and start managing it.

      Good Luck,

      Sam
      Sam,

      Indeed I agree that the number of members must be attained quickly. Furthermore registering on the website is free. Once we have our goal, only then will we start collecting. So no one has to put money until the model has succeeded. With that being said, we still need to get our members in the shortest amount of time. Because the longer it takes the more members will go stale.

      That is why I think press marketing will be our biggest asset. We are trying to get an interview on a Spanish tv channel's sports show that gets nearly 1million viewers, and will surely have way more during the World Cup.

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Grant
    A bit of American Idol turned sports . Should be a good concept, just ensure those who have more money do not gain a bigger advantage, else you're replicating the same issue you're trying to fix.
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by mgtarheels View Post

      A bit of American Idol turned sports . Should be a good concept, just ensure those who have more money do not gain a bigger advantage, else you're replicating the same issue you're trying to fix.
      Again I'm grateful for the suggestions and on this topic we agree with you. We are not allowing multiple memberships. It will be a fair democracy.

      Also the members involvement is our ultimate goal, this will lead to renewed memberships at the end of the year. We do not want 95 percent of the members to feel like their votes are worth less so that 5% can get more votes and we make a little bit more money. It would be aweful strategy.

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author xInd
    What about getting a simple flash game going, where you can do a little soccer draft or play a little soccer game, to keep people entertained on the site and more interested in going there while the process of gathering members takes place?

    How about a dream draft - where the members get to have fun picking all the (real) players they like and making their own fake team, kind of like practicing for when it starts... I think that would also be beneficial in the future success of the organization to be able to collectively make better choices for the team?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Xception-Industries View Post

      What about getting a simple flash game going, where you can do a little soccer draft or play a little soccer game, to keep people entertained on the site and more interested in going there while the process of gathering members takes place?

      How about a dream draft - where the members get to have fun picking all the (real) players they like and making their own fake team, kind of like practicing for when it starts... I think that would also be beneficial in the future success of the organization to be able to collectively make better choices for the team?
      These are all great ideas to keep our product more entertaining. we've thought about the "Dream Draft" as you put it. It would basically be fantasy soccer, keep the users excited for when this fantasy sports becomes real life.

      To the poster about making tradecards. That's a great idea for a tangible product. We certainly plan on making our online store where people can buy products related to the team. For example team jerseys, flags and other goodies. Trading cards would be cool, and could one day be worth a lot if one of our players ever becomes a top tier athlete.

      Thanks,

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author HomeBizConcepts
    I like the concept. Unique and interesting to say the least. Being an owner would we get free tix to an event? LOL! Being facetious of course.
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by 1* View Post

      I like the concept. Unique and interesting to say the least. Being an owner would we get free tix to an event? LOL! Being facetious of course.
      Well, being a member, you would get to decide whether you get free tickets. So it's up to you . Do you want free tickets? Do the other members think that members should get free tickets?

      For example, you might decide to host a few free for all events that would generate great PR and be valuable to an up and coming sports franchise.

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author Kaphoen
    Edge, bonjour from France...

    First up... this is a social activity, so get some social action on your website.

    Start by getting your blog up to speed with some reports on progress, your vision, etc. You need to transfer some of the excitement that you have generated in this forum (in 2 days) to your web-site visitors. Ask questions. Ask for feed-back, let your visitors comment... let them feel a part of your vision.

    (On a technical front, I would change the blog to a WordPress format as there are so many plugins available that will enhance social activity - and it need not cost you any money).

    Do that and I'll get you some real, socially active, visitors from around the world

    Regards,

    P.S. What happened to the YouTube video?
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Kaphoen View Post

      Edge, bonjour from France...

      First up... this is a social activity, so get some social action on your website.

      Start by getting your blog up to speed with some reports on progress, your vision, etc. You need to transfer some of the excitement that you have generated in this forum (in 2 days) to your web-site visitors. Ask questions. Ask for feed-back, let your visitors comment... let them feel a part of your vision.

      (On a technical front, I would change the blog to a WordPress format as there are so many plugins available that will enhance social activity - and it need not cost you any money).

      Do that and I'll get you some real, socially active, visitors from around the world

      Regards,

      P.S. What happened to the YouTube video?
      Kaphoen,

      Bonjour et merci beaucoup pour tes opinions. J'ai oublié trop de mon Français et il est un peu précaire, allors je parlerai en Anglais.

      Thanks for the input. Yes the blog has been inactive, like I mentioned I was out of commission for a long time, the surgeries really got me hard. To top things off we no longer have the computer science member of our team, so we are currently looking for a new developer. I will make a post somewhere else here in the warrior forum to see if there are any interested warriors. A person with both developing and IM skills would really complete our team.

      As for the youtube video. The guy's account was canceled, so some of the videos disappeared. But here is one that is still on.

      YouTube - NitterChannel's Channel

      Thanks for the offer to spread the word a bit about our startup. I will be in touch with you once everything is up to date.

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author barney rubble
    Very interesting concept.......
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  • Profile picture of the author jerome1111
    I very much like the layout to your pages and the color scheme as well. One thing you might reconsider is the font spacing for the text on the front page where it says "choose one of our stunning videos...etc". The bold white text is a bit tough on the eyes since the spacing is so narrow.
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by jerome1111 View Post

      I very much like the layout to your pages and the color scheme as well. One thing you might reconsider is the font spacing for the text on the front page where it says "choose one of our stunning videos...etc". The bold white text is a bit tough on the eyes since the spacing is so narrow.
      Jerome, thanks for the input but I think you might have the wrong thread? no where on our site does it say "choose one of our stunning videos...etc." lol.
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  • Profile picture of the author Daedric
    With the World Cup coming up, soccer fever is at all time high! You should have your site released a lot earlier to catch the fever.
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by Daedric View Post

      With the World Cup coming up, soccer fever is at all time high! You should have your site released a lot earlier to catch the fever.
      That's true. It's not too late as the site is actually released and fully functional and the world cup is 1 month long starting in 9 days (woooooot!!)

      Edge
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  • Profile picture of the author Kaphoen
    Originally Posted by Edge88

    A person with both developing and IM skills would really complete our team
    The blog in my signature is one of several that I have developed.

    Regards,
    Signature
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  • Profile picture of the author kla
    very interesting idea. ill try this, i want good result for my business
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    • Profile picture of the author Edge88
      Originally Posted by kla View Post

      very interesting idea. ill try this, i want good result for my business
      Wow, way to point out you're spamming the forum...
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