Creating a Business Model: Not As Scary As You're Making It Out to Be

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Feeling totally overwhelmed by the task of creating a business model for your big idea? Meet the panelists at our upcoming HowTo Conference who can help.

Betsy Mikel (Editor, Women 2.0)

So you have an idea. It’s an amazing idea and you know that it has legs. You’ve run it past friends, family, your favorite barista -- basically anyone who will listen -- and a lot of them are telling you to go for it. Build your thing. Make your idea real. Change the world.

So you hunker down to do just that. And you get stuck. Because you need a business model. And you have no idea how the heck to make one of those.

  • How do you translate this game-changing idea into a viable product that has potential to actually make money?
  • How do you show the value of what you want to provide?
  • How do you apply a business lens to your kinda-out-there idea?

Creating a business model may sound like an impossible task and you don’t even know where to start. But don’t give up. Swing by our HowTo Conference next week instead. We can help! Next Tuesday on September 30, be sure to check out our panel: How to Create Value with the Right Business Model.

Get to know who will be on the panel and we hope to see you there next Tuesday!

Charles Hudson, Partner at SoftechVC: Moderator

Charles HudsonCharles is a Venture Partner at SoftTech VC and the CEO and Co-founder of Bionic Panda Games, a mobile games company. Until February 2010, he was the VP of Business Development for Serious Business, a leading producer of social games for the social web (acquired by Zynga). He produced technology conferences focused on the intersection of gaming and social media (Virtual Goods Summit and the Social Gaming Summit).

He also works with Justin Smith from Inside Social Games / Inside Facebook on a series of research reports on the virtual goods market. Prior to joining Serious Business, he was the Sr. Director for Business Development at Gaia Online, a leading online hangout for teens and young adults. Prior to Gaia, he worked in New Business Development at Google. He spent several years working at In-Q-Tel, the strategic venture capital group for the Central Intelligence Agency and is on the Advisory Board for BizWorld and the MIT/Stanford Venture Lab.

Alison Johnston Rue, CEO & CoFounder of InstaEDU (recently acquired by Chegg): Panelist

ALISON JOHNSTON RUEAlison Johnston Rue was the CEO and cofounder of InstaEDU, the largest marketplace for online tutoring, which was acquired by Chegg for $30 million in June 2014. Today, Alison leads Chegg’s tutoring business, driving strategy, business development and marketing. Prior to cofounding InstaEDU, she was an early team member at Box, Aardvark (acquired by Google), and Nextdoor. She also cofounded in-home tutoring company, Cardinal Scholars, which sold to CourseHero.

Alison has a BA from Stanford and has spoken at SXSWedu, Launch, SIIA, The Startup Conference, TieCon, and Harvard Business School on education technology and entrepreneurship. She was listed on Forbes’ 30 under 30 in Education in 2014. You can follow her on Twitter at @ajalison.

Meet the Speaker: Alison Johnston Rue, co-founder & CEO of InstaEDU from Women 2.0 on Vimeo.

Rebecca Rosenfelt, Product Manager & Growth at Airbnb: Panelist

Rebecca RosenfeltRebecca is a Product Manager on the Airbnb Growth team. She has been at Airbnb for 2.5 years, and during that time has worked on Airbnb’s international expansion and business strategies, and developed product-driven tactics that drive the growth of Airbnb as a leading global travel marketplace. She joined Airbnb through an acquisition of the travel startup she founded in 2010, Inhabit Vacations, which offered a curated marketplace of unique vacation rental properties around the world.

Check out our Q&A with Rebecca.

Laura Behrens Wu, Founder & CEO of Shippo: Panelist

Laura Behrens WuLaura Behrens Wu is the founder and CEO of Shippo. Shippo simplifies shipping for e-commerce companies by offering discounted shipping rates and a streamlines solution across all different shipping providers. It’s Amazon-level logistics for all e-commerce stores.Laura is proud to be a first-time founder currently leading a team of eight people at Shippo. Prior to founding Shippo, Laura worked at LendUp and was educated at the University of St. Gallen & Harvard College. Follow her on Twitter at @laurabehrenswu.

Lynn Perkins, CEO & Co-founder of UrbanSitter: Panelist

Lynn-Perkins-headshot-67Lynn Perkins is CEO and co-founder of UrbanSitter, a mobile and online service that connects parents and babysitters through social connections.Launched in 2011, Lynn led the company from notion to national marketplace inless than a year. A startup veteran, Lynn offers more than 15 years of experience marketing and selling to Gen X and Gen Y. Prior to founding to UrbanSitter, Lynn served as founder and CEO of Xuny.com and VP of Business Development at Bridgepath.com.

At companies like Gap Inc., LaSalle Partners and Joie de Vivre Hospitality, Lynn gained extensive business and transaction experience. Lynn is a frequent speaker on topics like entrepreneurship, technology, women-led business and childcare. She is also the proud mom of three children and a graduate of Stanford University.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your HowTo Conference ticket now!


About the author: Betsy Mikel is the managing editor of Women 2.0 and runs the content consultancy Aveck. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and a lifelong obsession with French language and culture. When she's not biking all over every city she visits to find its best taqueria, you can find Betsy on Twitter at @betsym.