December 1, 2022

Seed Stage Founders Undervalue Angels With Marketing & Comms Expertise

A summary of one of our favourite blog posts from Hunter Walk

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Hunter co-founded Homebrew, a seed stage venture fund, in 2013 along with Satya Patel - counting investments including Chime, Plaid, Cruise, Gusto, Bowery Farming, Finix and more.

Here are some of the more significant points in a nutshell.

The Undervalued Skills of Marketing and Communications

  1. Founders Often Don’t Come From These Backgrounds: Founders usually come from engineering, product, or sales backgrounds. Including angels with marketing and communications expertise adds new perspectives to the cap table.
  2. VCs Don't Typically Have These Backgrounds Either: Venture capitalists likely didn't spend their careers in marketing or communications roles. Including experts in these areas can provide valuable insights that VCs might not have.
  3. Seed Stage Startups Don’t Hire Full-time for These Roles: Marketing and communications roles become full-time employees (FTEs) when a startup grows from 10 to 50 employees. Including these experts as angel investors provides access to their expertise without hiring them full-time.
  4. Best Practices in Marketing & Comms Are Highly Extensible: While experts in these fields will be more valuable when on board full-time, they can still provide valuable insights and assistance on an 'on-demand' basis for seed-stage startups.
  5. Seed Stage Needs Here Are Usually About Preventing Things From Going Wrong: Startups may not prioritize marketing and communications in the early stages, but doing them poorly can be costly. Including experts in these fields can help manage risks and address unexpected issues.
  6. Hiring Marketing or Comms Consultants/Agencies At Seed Stage Is Often a Terrible Idea: Engaging mediocre or junior talent can be a waste of time and money. The best practitioners in these fields are unlikely to consult for seed-level startups, so including them as angel investors is a better option.

Seed stage founders should consider including marketing and communications experts as angel investors to diversify their cap table, gain valuable insights, and prevent potential pitfalls. This strategy can provide a strong foundation for future growth and success.

You can read the full article here: