Featured Startup Pitch: Tip It Girls—an online social sharing space for girls only
Company: Tip It Girls
Headquarters: Louisville, Kentucky
By Christian W. Hahn, co-founder
Tip It Girls was created to make discovering and sharing the things girls love easy and fun. A simple separation of followers and friends allows for either private or public/open communications. Anyone can see public tips, but only Tip It Girls (friends) can view private tips.
Users of the Tip It Girls network don’t have to search for friends, but rather can make new friends by watching what they tip on the tip scroll. Tip It Girls shares every new public tip on the tip scroll, which is on the site’s homepage and the iPhone application’s front page. Every few seconds, when a new tip is added, the other tips scroll down.
Olivia, a teenager who loves to shop for the newest trends at all the hot spots in the mall, finds a perfect pair of leather boots. She is so excited that she calls her best friend Nicole on her cell and tells her all about the boots. She wants her friend’s opinion, her advice, her positive feedback to make the decision to buy a little easier. So, Olivia takes a photo of the boots and sends it to Nicole, who then tells Olivia that she should buy them.
If she were a Tip It Girl, Olivia could have gotten public or private feedback on her potential purchase and tipped other girls with similar taste to the availability of the new boots.
Tip It Girls is a place that makes the sharing that girls do when they shop easier, more fun, and more social. Tip It Girls is also a place for shoppers to find and make friends with other girls who have similar tastes and interests.
However, sharing is only part of the fun—discovering like-minded girls is just as important. So, the tip it scroll page was born. Now, Tip It Girls not only can take photos and share the things they love, but also can browse all the public tips from other Tip It Girls. The “hunt” for a special purchase or perfect piece for a room’s décor is a major part of the fun, but so is finding new friends.
Lastly, we all like to achieve milestones. Tip It Girls are not any different. The more people who decide to follow a Tip It Girl because she tips fun stuff, the higher she climbs on the ladder of top Tip It Girls and the more status and badges she earns. The badges are yet another way to make tipping fun and to engage users of the site.
· Girls only—no prying eyes. Be yourself.
· Browse tips from girls all over the world. Search the database for keywords and find Tip It Girls who you want to follow.
· Follow Tip It Girls that you like, and invite the best matches to become a VIP member of your personal Tip It Girl circle.
· Discover new decorating and fashion trends.
· Get instant feedback on everything from what to wear to what to buy from your trusted circle or from fashion-conscious girls who are part of the site.
· Earn badges by gaining more followers. These badges give you discounts on our daily specials and from other participating retailers.
Tip it Girls makes sharing the things girls love fun, quick and easy. Each user of the site gets a visual blog to keep track of all of her tips. On the My Tip Page, other users can view any Tip It Girl’s public tips and learn about her style, follow her, or comment on her tips.
The idea for Tip It Girls came from my observations of my lovely wife and her friends. My wife loves to shop and to decorate. She talks to her friends and family about fashion, decorating, and the best vacation spots. They share photos, ideas, opinions, and then make buying decisions. So, I decided to create a website and iPhone application to make this type of sharing easier and more fun.
Marketing and Operational Strategy Overview:
Initially, the goal is to create an experience for the user. Free downloads, no distracting sponsor ads, just fun. The iPhone application will have iAds integration as well as a unique advertisement section in a prime position that can be easily controlled. We will place specials, limited time deals, etc., into that advertisement section on top of the scroll page.
We will launch the site and the iPhone application with a contest that will run for approximately two months. The winner of the contest will receive a significant prize.
Advertisement will be limited to Facebook and other social media sites, app review sites, and blogs devoted to the site’s target audience. Video marketing Tip It Girls will be promoted on YouTube.
Our initial goal is to develop relationships with retailers that serve our target audience so that they can tip into the network.
We are not able to disclose the second phase of Tip It Girls yet.
How We Differentiate Ourselves from the Competition
Tip It Girls is a niche company. We are not everything to everyone. Our target market is specific, and our experience is geared towards that group.
We are the first application of its kind and offer several new and unique functions.
Tip It Girls will capitalize on the important “first to market” philosophy and on its user-friendly interface.
Lastly, Tip It Girls has a team of talented experts who understand the competitive landscape and target audience.
Initially, Tip It Girls will focus on building a network of users.
Minimal revenue will come from the iAds integration in the free application.
A limited number of sponsor advertisement slots are available on the website and the iPhone application will allow for relevant sponsor advertisement directly into the tip it scroll page on an hourly basis.
Other revenue models exist but cannot be disclosed yet.
Tip It Girls seeks relationships with retailers that sell to our target market—girls between the age of 13 and 30 who use mobile devices.
We are also beginning to seek out investment partners for future growth. Currently, Tip It Girls is funded entirely in house.
Tip It Girls – www.tipitgirls.com