Hi founders and fellow VC Friends!
Each week we deliver one awesome person to your inbox. These are the people you need to know—the marketers, sales gurus, engineers, ops wizzes— who give your startup superpowers 🚀. The best part is, everyone is hireable on a part-time basis.
Please meet Rachel Schultz, your brand partnerships & campaigns consultant 😍
I met Rachel via Derek Flanzraich, the founder of Greatist (acquired by Healthline) and now founder of something new 😉. Rachel is trusted by Uber, Cameo, and Graduate Hotels.
Rachel worked at Uber for 4 years. While at Uber, she program-managed various global initiatives. For the Uber Ice Cream campaign, she created a playbook for 10 city teams, created a 300+ item tracker, managed cross-functional stakeholders, and sourced thousands of activation materials. This campaign led to a 10% increase in Uber’s brand favorability and positive sentiment. Most recently, she led campaigns for Cameo during the holidays and drove an additional $200,000+ in GMV over Black Friday + Cyber Monday.
She’s passionate about wellness, mental health, travel, and things that make people’s lives better. One fun fact about Rachel — she started a cheese + travel blog during the pandemic! For your nom-ing pleasure, check out My Fromage Voyage! She highlights many of my favorite spots in Mexico City 🤩.
Need help building brand partnerships and project managing marketing campaigns? Respond to this email and I’ll intro you!
Rachel graciously shared 3 partnership pro-tips 🤝
Find your dream partners in strange places
Pay attention to what your customers talk about. Who do your customers look up to? What products do they purchase? Those people and brands are your dream partners.
I’m often asked, “how did you find that brand?”
9 times out of 10, I heard the founder speak on a non-mainstream podcast or saw the brand mentioned on social media. A few of my favorite podcasts for sourcing partners include Morning Brew, That’s So Retrograde, and Green Dreamer.
In addition to podcasts, read diverse publications, network in unique places, and join interesting Slack channels.
Here’s a fun story about networking in an interesting place! I helped open a co-living building in Denver and needed to curate and commission $400,000 worth of custom art. I stopped by Detour’s 5 Pointers interactive art exhibit hoping to meet the artist, Thomas, in-person. We met and connected immediately. He ended up creating two stunning murals for us. That same afternoon, Thomas introduced me to the Executive Director of Redline Contemporary Art Center. That relationship developed into an artist-in-residence program in our building. The lesson? Always keep your eyes peeled. Stay open to connections and ideas.
Build an authentic relationship with your partner from day 1
When you reach out to potential partners make sure to include a personal connection — reference a mutual friend, a common interest, or give your potential partner kudos for an initiative they’re working on.
Once you get in touch, remember that time is the most valuable asset. Make it worth their time and yours.
Partnerships work best when they’re built on trust. Understand each other's motivations early. This allows both parties to benefit more from the relationship.
Here’s what not to do:
People in partnership roles receive jarring amounts of free swag. Just sending swag isn’t going to get me on the phone with you. Even a lifetime supply of Outdoor Voices leggings won’t woo me 😉. Apolis found my Graduate Hotels work address and sent me a custom tote bag. This was before Apolis was in stores like Madewell. I use this bag to this day. I love it. But, I never explored a partnership with them.
The Apolis team didn’t connect the dots for me. They didn’t make a human connection or pitch me on why Graduate Hotels should create custom totes for guests. It wasn’t a bad idea. But it was lazy execution.
I’m now a total fangirl of some of my favorite partners. While once on the other side of the negotiating table, I now subscribe to everything by Poppy Jamie after co-producing a grueling and empowering mental health tour. I recently bought art from Ashley Joon, who created multiple murals for us in Denver. This is what successful partnerships look like.
It’s easy to do something that benefits you or your organization. Look for ways to help your partner succeed, even when it doesn’t directly impact you. I promise it will make an impression. What goes around comes around.
Share connections and referrals with your partners. Write a physical thank you note after the project. Provide a recommendation or testimonial without them asking. Small gestures are memorable and illustrate your appreciation for their time and effort.
These relationships can go above and beyond business partnerships when done right. Former partners have helped me land consulting gigs and connected me with mentors.
Want to connect with Rachel? Respond to this email and I’ll hook it up!
As always, let me know if you have any questions and if you want an intro to any of the folks in this email (including the PS section 🎉).
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Part-Time Opportunities ✨
Ghostwriter for Levels - Remember a month ago when I said Twitter ghostwriters were in high demand? I’m willing to bet this will be one of the requested jobs of 2021. Twitter has become an important marketing channel for startups (both for hiring talent and product distribution). It’s kinda out of control…
On that note, are you good at building personal brands? Excel at writing short engaging content? Love spending time with the top founders? If so, let me know and I’ll connect you with the Levels team. Levels is improving metabolic fitness and founded by some of the most fascinating people I know.
This gig would include writing for Twitter and potentially longer-form content. Honestly, if I had time for this, I would do this myself 😂. It will be SO interesting!
Product marketing manager for Abstract - Abstract helps designers collaborate at scale. They're looking for a product marketing wiz to help with a major release. They’re open to flexible arrangements, especially for the right fit. They’re looking for someone who's sharp with words, loves engaging with users, and isn't shy of working alongside a very seasoned product and design team. The team is top-notch. Notably, you’ll also get to work directly with my friend Fabri, who’s another very awesome person!
If these roles are a fit for you, or anyone you know, let me know and we’ll make the connections!
Most Recent Awesome People 🙏
Edem - Video producer and creative strategist. You can hire him to manage, strategize, and produce your videos. He's trusted by amazing cos like Journey Meditation, Saxx, Footaction, and Floodgate.
Sarah - Interim head of marketing. Sarah was an early employee at Uber (~ employee #100!) and was there for 7 years. She wore many hats across marketing, brand, and product.
Kevin - Cybersecurity consultant. Kevin has helped tech startups pass critical security audits for enterprise sales and conducted security assessments for highly regulated Fortune 500 financial services firms.
Want intros to anyone here? Lmk and I’ll connect you!
❤️ ❤️ ❤️