I have a product, some expert teachers and a few hundred paying customers. I'm starting to do this fulltime and need to build a team. I'm looking for marketing co-founder who is passionate about this industry. How/Where do I find folks like this in the Bay Area?
The way I was approached as a marketing co-founder is that I reconnected with a friend at our high school reunion. He was a highly technical founder who had run his business for a year but wasn't getting the results he wanted. He had no marketing expertise and offered me a majority equity share to come on board. It took me about a month of deliberation before I accepted, but I decided to accept because:
1) he demonstrated he was flexible and willing to change the business model based on my advice
2) he clearly showed that he valued my skills by offering such a high equity stake and
3) our existing relationship (we were very good friends all through middle and high school) put me at ease. I already knew his personality and liked working with him.
Don't underestimate the value of personal relationships. My networking strategy has always been to start with my existing network of people and ask them to introduce me to two new people. The strength of a personal referral is much stronger than bumping into someone at an event and your contact can often be a great source of research for you before you meet with your new contact.
I'd start by emailing your customer list, and asking them if they can make any recommendations. Who else have they bought products from? What other experts do they really admire and trust? Can they help you find a kindred spirit who you don't yet know? Then, I'd think of a book, author, or thought leader whom you admire. Go to Facebook and search for other people who have liked that book or author. Then see if you can further refine that list to find people in your area. Next, try to find some people on Youtube who are making videos on the same topics that you care about and cover. Does anyone strike you? Does anyone have the passion and charisma you're looking for? LinkedIn is another option. You can use advanced search criteria to look for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd connections with certain keywords in their profiles. Finally, I'd ask 10 close friends if they can make any enthusiastic recommendations. Once you've got your shortlist in place, I'd start reaching out to people one by one, and invite each person to lunch, your treat. If anyone starts to feel like a good fit, find a small, short-term project to collaborate on. Let things grow naturally from there, and don't be too quick to hope into business bed together. Hope this helps! Austin
Spend time with other spirituality and emotional-minded folks hang out. Both online and in person.
The more you're talking about what you do and what you're looking for, the faster you will find a passionate marketer within the industry.