Guide to Startup Weekend Porto

What should you bring with you?

– Laptop
– Pad of paper
– Pen
– Contact / business cards
– Ideas
– Energy
– Enthusiasm

What time should I be there from?
Doors will open at 6pm, food will be served from 7.30pm and the welcome speeches will start at 7pm sharp.

Are you pitching an idea?
We do not expect everyone that turns up to have an idea. Lots of people attend the weekend in order to provide their services and to help grow the ideas being pitched on the Friday night

What do you expect from the idea pitch?
You have 60 seconds to pitch your idea to the crowd. This should be a concise elevator pitch to engage with the audience into working on your concept. Here are some things you should consider:
– Introduce yourself & your background
– Title your idea
– Who is the audience you are targeting, and what specific concerns do they have?
Picture your idea, your pitch has to be illustrative and tangiable
– Describe the problem you want to solve
– Describe your vision – What are the benefits for your customers?
What makes your solution different from others out there?
What will the solution require to get started? What people are you looking for? Any skills your team is missing? What technology do you want to use?

As you only have 60 seconds, try this formula:
– Introduction: 5 seconds
– Problem: 20 seconds
– Vision: 20 seconds
– Requirements: 15 seconds

Not all ideas will make the grade
We do not force this process – there is no set limit on the amount of startups that can be worked on throughout the weekend, however, we ask that you ensure that you have enough team members to reach your goal at the end of the weekend.

Someone else may have the same idea
If you pitch an idea, and someone else has the same idea, you basically have two options – either join forces and use the other as a co-founder, or go head-to-head. Either way, don’t sweat about it. This also shows that the problem that you have a solution for is real. Not all ideas are unique – it is however in the execution of that idea that will make your startup unique.

If you are not pitching an idea –
Pick a team that you think you can help most. Think about what problems the pitches are trying to solve – where can your expertise help? What startup do you think would be best suited to your way of thinking?

The pitching process can be confusing – not everyone can remember all the ideas
On average, we experience that around 25-50% of attendees will pitch an idea. For Porto that would mean 20 – 30 + ideas. We suggest that you use your pad to write down any pitches that you especially like. This will also allow you to focus your questions to the startups you want to work with.

Networking time in between the pitches and company formation is important
Make sure you use this time wisely.
This is a manic process with people searching for specific talents to help form the perfect team for their startups.

Once the startups are formed
You will then have a couple of hours left in the offices to work on the idea. Get down the basics of what you are looking to achieve throughout the weekend. What will be possible with the team that you have to have completed by the end of the Weekend?

Use the time you spend with each other carefully – you should be presenting a prototype of your idea by the end of the weekend – ensure that you do not spend all of your time at the start to plan everything, you will run out of time!

Use market research to validate your idea
and make sure that you do this quickly. Using google form or will allow you to gain qualified market research at very little cost. Failing that, hit the streets to get your answers from the general public!

Some mentors will not like your idea
Do not let this put you off. You should take their guidance as it comes along, and at the end of the day, they are there to help you make the best out of your startup!

The final pitches need to be concise
You are allowed 8 minutes to present your startup to the jury. Think of the initial elevator pitch, but this time you are allowed media to help you on your way. Do not forget the part where you show how you will make the money in order to entice those investors to fund your idea!

If all else fails, keep it fun
If everything that was planned didnt quite work out- don’t stress about it. The weekend is all about having fun at the same time as helping you on your startup journey. Lots of people have come away from the weekends with a co-founder in the making!

The Startup Weekend Porto team is on hand throughout the week in order to answer any questions you may have – feel free to contact us through Twitter (DM / @swportugal) or Facebook

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