by Jack Hernandez for SocialMediaAge.com / Nov. 15, 2016
While traveling on a quick mini vacation, I attended #StartupGrind in Boca Raton last night and here are some quick notes of what I was able to gasp from 16 year old Rachel Zietz who started the company when she was around 14. It was great to see her discuss how she got started.
What is your company name?
So my company is called GladiatorLacrosse. We sell lacrosse gear and I started the company after exiting an academy that taught me how to manage and run a business.I bought my competitors products and was frustrated. Problems create opportunities, through the program at the academy we received a grant.
How long was the program?
It was a 33 week program once a week after school. It was broke into sections and we worked with mentors. But we also did some research. Hey what do you think about this product of the current product offerings we had.
When did you know you want to keep it going?
I know a lot of people drop out when they are faced challenges. At the investor panel competition I was really sad. I said, You didn’t win but continue. I know there is a problem in this market and a lot of challenges and losses. Is those challenges you have to build around.
What was it like to be on Shark Tank and how did it help?
The business was relatively new. Before that we were selling two products. Now 10. We were only selling online via amazon so now we are selling at tournaments and at stores. But initially was very hard to get the word out. Social media has been huge for us and just while playing lacrosse I also promote. Initially was very difficult but any opportunities that I got I jump at and I took. News articles have created a giant pr web. When I pitched it didn’t get to air till very later and as a result of shark thank we got an endorsement deal by the greatest lacrosse player. A lot of cool things have cooked out of shark tank.