Conversation with an EdTech Entrepreneur

I was fortunate enough to be introduced to an EdTech entrepreneur via a mentor at Pear Garage.

Basically, the quick breakdown is:
His background:
  • Stanford undergrad student
  • Taught as a teacher many years ago
  • MBA student from 2015 to 2017
  • Did Pear Launch Pad for a summer in 2017
  • Currently 35 and working on TeachFX full-time

TeachFX’s story:

  • Started when a principal he knew casually mentioned the idea
  • Drew sketches of product before writing any code and showed to a dozen teachers from first/second degree connections
    • Feedback led him to decide it’s a worthy idea and start writing specs
  • Raised money from Pear VC before incorporating as a solo founder
  • Sales mostly from direct/email/phone marketing to schools
    • Can’t use targeted ads because everything has to go through principal in a school

Good impressions on Quizkly:

  • Impressive, has clear value proposition (i.e. entirely new way of elimination a very real pain point)
    • Says we’re a painkiller (solves problem directly), easy to sell
    • TeachFX more like a vitamin (harder to engage users)
  • Would personally want the service as a recent MBA grad and teacher and imagine many Med/Law/Business students would too

His advice:

  • Start getting feedback early on about out user experience / features
  • Have landing page and use FB/Google ads to drive traffic and check conversion rate
  • Start experimenting different payment models in-person with Med students
    • See how far into process they lose interest
    • Ultimate goal is receive verbal agreement to purchase product
      • Decide on price this way
      • Don’t be shy
      • Can learn about product this way
    • Use above two to iterate to MVP people will either pay for (subscription model) or use a lot (can lead to ads business model)

My thoughts are:

With him and I both being Eric Ries’s The Lean Startup fans, most of the above points are Eric Ries applied to our product, so nothing was extrema-altering. The main value of the conversation was hearing his experience with TeachFx and his journey from teaching into entrepreneurship.

I’m going to get to work.


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