Planet of the Apps Week 5

Chat with Cheddar founder, Jon Steinberg + Poncho founders, Kuan Huang and Ashley D'Arcy + Stop, Breathe & Think founders, Julie Campistron and Jamie Price

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON July 14, 2017

Discussion

Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
Hi everyone, we're Jamie and Julie, the co-founders of Stop, Breathe & Think, an app that helps the world find peace of mind anywhere. Our app allows users to check-in with their emotions and access short meditations and mindful activities tuned to how they feel. Since filming Planet of the Apps, where Jessica Alba was our mentor, we won a Webby for best health app, launched our second app targeting Kids, raised more money, grew the team and continue to develop the Stop, Breathe & Think product and experience! We're excited to take your question about Planet of the Apps, mindfulness, entrepreneurship and anything else you are interested in learning! And we're Kuan and Ashley from Poncho, a fun, personalized weather app that sends you jokes and tips along with your weather forecast every morning. We worked with indomitable Gwyneth Paltrow on ‘Planet of the Apps’ and ended up with a 2 million dollar investment from Lightspeed! AUA (Ask us anything)! We also have online today, Cheddar founder, Jon Steinberg. Ask any of us anything - from founding businesses, to raising money to what it's like being on Planet Of The Apps. Fire away.
Ayrton De Craene@ayrton · Code @ Product Hunt
Is there any backstage gossip you can share with us? 😏
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@ayrton What do you wanna know? ;)
Nick Abouzeid@nickabouzeid · Words at Product Hunt ✌️
@ayrton Either there is no gossip or a lot of gossip 😏
Ayrton De Craene@ayrton · Code @ Product Hunt
Lauren Berkman@lauren_berkman · COO, KiraKira3D
Hi Jamie, Julie, Kuan, Ashley and Jon! If you had one piece of advice in regards what a startup can do to keep customers happy and increase 1-1 dialogue with them. What would it be?
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@lauren_berkman Be true to yourself...build what you want for yourself
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@lauren_berkman We have a feedback link in the app, and answer everybody. Actually giving a shit really matters. People can tell when you care, and it goes a long way to creating good will even when you are not perfect.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@lauren_berkman Hi Laura! First step is really to listen to the customers. Talk to them, act on their feedback, involve them in how the product gets shaped. Jamie and I see every customer support ticket. That really allows us to keep our finger on the pulse of how our users feel about the product. There are many other ways to gather user feedback and have that dialogue: a private group, one on one interviews (I love those!), beta tests with new features. Listening to your users and truly taking their feedback into account usually drives customer satisfaction/happiness.
Niv Dror@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
Hey everyone! Thanks for joining. Curious if each of you can share the best piece of advice the mentor you're working with on the show mentioned?
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@nivo0o0 For us it was really to enter the Kids market. We had it on our roadmap, but for later, and Jessica really inspired us to take the plunge earlier, and it's probably one of the best strategic decisions we've made to date.
Benny AndtheJets@benny_andthejets · Propagate Intern
@nivo0o0 @julie_campistron how would people get personalize their own yoga and distressing routine while also taking advice?
Ben Tossell@bentossell · newCo
If you had to run one of the others' apps, who would you choose and why?
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@bentossell I love Poncho. I downloaded it long before I knew they were part of POTA.
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@bentossell Mend, an app that helps you get over breakups, is one of the apps on another episode of POTA that really interests me. As a poet, I'm chummy with heartbreak. I'm also super into Jungian psychoanalysis. I'd love to be a part of helping people through that difficult time.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
Kate@katesegrin · Head of Social @ GitHub
What have been the biggest challenges to setting up your respective businesses? How have you overcome these, and how has POTA helped?
Benny AndtheJets@benny_andthejets · Propagate Intern
Cheddar? How do you plant to use tech to make business reporting more fun and exiciting
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@benny_andthejets we focus on tech media and startup...have you watched it?
Benny AndtheJets@benny_andthejets · Propagate Intern
@jonsteinberg Not yet but it sounds really interesting.. I've been looking for ways to keep with business news
Rachel Saya Jacobson@rachel_jacobson · Student
What are your favorite apps right now (other than the really cool, awesome ones you guys created)?
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@rachel_jacobson Amazon Alexa...can "drop in" to the Echo Show and video conf with my kids
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@rachel_jacobson I use the Slack app all the time. I also have a 6 1/2 son, so RazKids (for reading) and then I love the Tinybop apps.
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@rachel_jacobson I love Pocket and NYTimes Crossword. Also love the dogdings iMessage app.
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Operations @ Product Hunt
Hi everyone thanks for joining us today. What has been the biggest change or impactful aspect on your business from being on POTA?
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@ems_hodge The pivot from prioritizing our original app to create a whole new app for kids. I think it was great advice, and I'm glad we went for it.
Chad Whitaker@chadwhitaker · Product Designer at Product Hunt 👋
As founders, what is the best advice on starting a new business from your own experience that you can offer the PH community?
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@chadwhitaker Be fearless about being yourself and sticking to your vision. Obviously you have to be open to learning and adapting, but don't let everyone's opinions pull you off course.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@chadwhitaker I think it's balancing long term vision (the story you sell) with short/mid-term execution (the traction you show). Progress is critical but you always have to keep in mind the long term view. And it's hard :-) Also advisors. It takes a village and leveraging the goodwill and connections of passionate mentors/advisors/investors is key.
Darian Adler@adler_darian
What would you say is the most important quality to have in order to be successful in the app world and in creating your own business?
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@adler_darian Build what you want...every market is "fucking big enough"
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@adler_darian Being willing to do whatever it takes. That includes riding it out when things are really difficult and not over reacting, and being fearless about meeting with/asking for help from everyone you can.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@adler_darian Product quality is paramount, so focus on building a product people love. Sounds silly, but it's the foundation. There is no sustainable business without it. And then as a personal trait, probably resilience. There are a lot of setbacks along the way, and you have to be able to recover from them quickly. I really believe that part of being a successful entrepreneur is hanging on a little longer than most people.
Linh Le@linhlesc · Business Development at Propagate
What was your favorite part of the show? On camera or off!
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@linhlesc Getting to work with you, Ben, and Howard and learning about Hollywood TV!
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@linhlesc We did a focus group in a kids yoga studio with kids 6-8, to test our kid meditations, and it was really awesome! The positive feedback we got from the kids, but also the realization that they knew what stress was at such an early age comforted us in the fact that we were doing the right thing launching an app for younger kids. The segment didn't make the show's final edit, but it was precious. Also getting picked by Jessica after the escalator pitch. What a relief that was!
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@linhlesc @julie_campistron That was my favorite moment, too. These kids were so sophisticated, and sadly knew all too much about stress by the age of 7!
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@linhlesc meeting GP!
Andrea Wijaya@winjaya_ · Person in Training
I've recently graduated college, and have since been thrust headlong into the real world... Would you have any advice to share for lost +dazed ++confused twenty-somethings? Specifically with regards to long-term goals vs short-term need; and keeping things in perspective. Thank you!! ☺️
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@winjaya_ My advice is to talk constantly about what you want to be doing and what your talents are to everyone around you! I never planned to end up in tech but after selling myself as a poet and lit-head to the CEO of Poncho, I ended up on the team. Also, don't rush it. Everyone has a few shitty jobs after graduation.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@winjaya_ Try, test. Don't be afraid to fail.Make sure whatever you do is a learning experience. Work with good people, that's probably the #1 happiness factor at work! Always ask yourself "what's the worse that can happen if I do this", and usually the worse is not that bad after all ;-)
Andrea Wijaya@winjaya_ · Person in Training
@julie_campistron Thank you so much! Especially your advice on risk-taking. Also just wanted to let you know that SBT has really helped with staying present and mindful -- so thank you also to you and Jamie for that :) Wishing you both the best!
Andrea Wijaya@winjaya_ · Person in Training
@ashleyanndarcy Thank you Ashley!! I totally feel because I studied comparative lit as a minor in college + a lil bit of coding... It's been really inspiring to see women like you totally own their love of the humanities, and bring that added depth into the tech world.
🥀@ashleyanndarcy · editor
@winjaya_ Send us an email at me@poncho.is if you're in NYC and interested in Poncho!
Ayush Chandra@ayush_chandra · Research Intern & Tech Evangelist
Hey! When is the Planet of the apps going to come in Netflix..looking forward to enjoy it
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@ayush_chandra No plans I'm aware of but that would be cool!
Ayush Chandra@ayush_chandra · Research Intern & Tech Evangelist
How can we stream the series apart from the iTunes Store?
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@ayush_chandra Apple Music is the only place
Arun Sathiya@arunsathiya · Happiness Engineer, Automattic
@ayush_chandra Apple Music is your only choice. Get started with the free 120 days complimentary subscription.
Rachel Saya Jacobson@rachel_jacobson · Student
What was the best learning experience from the show?
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@rachel_jacobson Put yourself out there and hustle. Don't listen to other people who tell you not to do it. They're mostly idiots.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@rachel_jacobson Go for it. Don't be scared. Be yourself. Part of me (and I know Jamie felt the same way) just wanted to hide from the whole thing. Not take the risk. But it was so worth it to do it.
Rachel Persky@rachel_persky
What has been your biggest challenge thus far? What has been the most exciting factors of being such a big part of POTA?
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@rachel_persky In real world, as an entrepreneur, you keep lots of emotions inside yourself; On the show, you have to show them outside. That was the biggest challenge for me. Being featured by Apple app store is the most exciting part.
Julie Campistron@julie_campistron · Stop, Breathe & Think
@rachel_persky For us fund raising was pretty challenging initially. We were both first time fund raisers and it was laborious to get our first funding. It's easier now that we have shown execution. The exposure we are getting with POTA is awesome. And the fact that through the show we launched our new Kids initiative is super exciting.
Ayush Chandra@ayush_chandra · Research Intern & Tech Evangelist
What all interesting is there in the series 5
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@ayush_chandra Have you watched it yet?
Ayush Chandra@ayush_chandra · Research Intern & Tech Evangelist
@huangkuan not really but I want to watch it
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@ayush_chandra Great. Happy to hear your thoughts after you watch it.
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
Hi I'm the founder and CEO of Cheddar, a new video media company sitting at the intersection of business news and culture. I was President & Chief Operating Officer of BuzzFeed from 2010 to 2014. I live with my wife, two little kids, and cat on New York's Upper East Side.
Roman Rusinov@themanro · SightPlan
There is a LOT of negative feedback about the show. A lot of developers are pretty mad about it’s existence in general. Are you guys just ignoring all that and fulfilling the contract or does this feedback resonates with you at all?
Jon Steinberg@jonsteinberg · CEO Cheddar. Formerly BuzzFeed President
@themanro Critics are the worst. People love the show. It reminds me of The Profit or Bar Rescue. No idea why developers would have an issue...
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@themanro I think the show is not really targeting at developers. I am curious about the feedback from mainstream media.
Kuan Huang@huangkuan · Founder of Poncho
@themanro and mainstream audience.
Jamie Price@jamie_price · Co Founder & President
@themanro The show treated us really well, and has given us the opportunity to share our work with a lot of people we may have never reached. You can find something to criticize in everything. I'm just appreciative that we had the chance to do something so outside of the norm for us.
Aaron Batalion@abatalion · Cofounder/1st CTO, LivingSocial
@themanro If you have zero critics, you arent doing anything interesting. As a former developer, I understand some of the feedback, but also want people to realize that apps are now part of popular culture and the rest of the world (outside of tech hubs) have never heard the stories of the developer. I want those stories told. Also, the show reached developers who wouldnt traditionally have access to this distribution and/or venture capital. I talk more about it here: https://medium.com/@abatalion/wh...