Anatomy of a “free” 10 minute ICO Consultation
As blockchain and cryptocurrency fever spreads, lots of people are looking for advice on their ICO project. As a result, Axes and Eggs gets a lot of requests to read white papers, hear pitches and otherwise provide free advice for various ICO ventures. What follows is basically me bitching about wannapreneurs who take for granted that information; and expertise is not free. This doesn’t apply to 90% of ICO startups. Many come more prepared than Fortune 50 companies and we love you guys like FixNix and iCrowdU. This is for the last 10% of people who aren’t quite ready to make the commitment to being blockchain entrepreneurs. But, hopefully after reading this, you’ll come prepared to be amazing!
“Hey did you get a chance to read my white paper?”
No, no I didn’t read the 50 pages you randomly sent me, in front of the call you reluctantly auto scheduled, after 10 emails of trying to select a date and time that worked for both of us, because you refused to use the self service link. www.axesandeggs.com/#schedule-a-chat
But let’s pretend I did. Reading your white paper is like a bottle and half of Two Buck Chuck or about 1.5 hours in real time or 18 hours in BitcoinTime. Did I understand a white paper that introduced “the first of its kind, revolutionary, ground backing, never been done before, novel application of blockchain / tangle / atomicswap”? No. Not even going to pretend I did.
Ok. So now that you’ve finally booked time and I didn’t read your white paper, do you want me to tell you my life history or why you called? My life history (cause I love to talk about myself) is anywhere between 3–5 minutes or a bottle of Two Buck Chuck. One never knows. Ok, now we’re past introductions and have developed rapport. What is your project? Hence why I love folks from New York. They start at “Hey, this is so and so, I’m calling to discuss….”
Typically the challenge is that people are in the ideation stage and don’t have a clear vision of what they’re looking for. To help with that consider,
“Outside of my power point, what do I have?”
Have you built a community? Have you recruited team members to help you? Do you have a budget if you haven’t built a community or attracted a team, to do so? Think about these as, if you can answer those before the call, that means we can have a more substantive conversation. Otherwise, we end up here, at the anatomy of a 10 minute free consultation.
The real anatomy of a 10 minute free consultation works like this:
1. I see appointment on calendar (5 seconds)
2. Google name of person having appointment with (5 minutes)
3. Read LinkedIn for additional background on person/company (10 minutes)
4. Checkout project website (5 minutes)
5. Scan whitepaper (5 minutes)
6. Confused by white paper, make notes to ask clients about fundamental issues (10 minutes)
7. Make coffee before call (10 minutes)
8. Stop emailing and get on call 2 minutes before call starts. (2 minutes)
9. Wait on potential client to join (2–5 minutes)
a. Hang up at 5 minute mark
b. Send email to client expressing understanding that they’re free to waste my time but I’m not free to curse them out for doing so. Giving them link to reschedule and potentially waste another 60 minutes of my time.
10. Or potential client joins call
a. 5 minutes of getting to know what services we provide
b. 5 minutes of getting to know about their project
11. I ask “How are you going to make one dollar in the next 30 days?”
a. Response A — 30 second pregnant pause, followed by 10 minutes of circular conversation about runway and first of its kind tech
b. Response B — We will make one dollar by…
12. Great, we can help you by (see over view of services and associated fees)
13. Sticker shock (15 minutes)
14. Prospect says they’ll get back to you before eventually hanging up the phone. Its basically 3 awkward minutes thats very similar to ending a bad tinder date.
15. Prospect emails you asking for “alternative” pay structure (5 minutes)
16. Modify terms for client’s review ( 2 bottles of Two Buck Chuck, 1 hour in real time or 9 BitcoinHours)
17. Email prospect (10 minutes to compose 3 line email)
18. Not hear from prospect ( 90 days)
19. Email from prospect wanting to schedule call to discuss (See bullet #1, cause now you don’t recall the project but read the entire email chain for background — 10 minutes. Then hold your breath as you send them link to self select 10 minute follow up.)
So that is the basic anatomy of a 10 minute free consultation. I write this so you know what your advisor is thinking. We do want the opportunity to earn your business but Matthias hates trading wasted time for playground time with Samson Xander (greatest eponymous nephew) and if I miss another happy hour waiting on hold for you, I’ll never have kids myself. So, a helpful checklist of if you’re looking for an advisor:
1. Be able to explain your project in 60 seconds are less
2. Prepare an answer to “How will you make $1 in the next 30 days?”
3. Read your advisor’s website beforehand. For Axes and Eggs, if our services are unclear, let us know. We’ll update the website so you get a better sense of our services.
4. Advisor fees vary but they either have rent to pay, need lunch money or want a chunk of equity. Sometime all three. $8k — $150k is the range. The range is based really on what you need. Need a little help? Little fee. Need a lot of help, bigger fee.
5. Last but not least, the consultation is only free for you. We’ve had to put in over 100 years in real time (basically infinity in both Two Buck Chuck and BitcoinTime) just to be prepared to offer you the 10 minutes of guidance you need to make a decision. So please, come prepared. And if not prepared, pre-pay. Our hourly rate is $450 an hour. Once you’ve paid us, take as much time as you need.
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My name is Samson. I’m partner at Axes and Eggs. A blockchain and cryptocurrency consultancy. We solve problems both big and small, to help entrepreneurs, startups and businesses win. If you have a problem you need help with, please feel free to drop sometime on my calendar to schedule a free 10 minute consultation. www.axesandeggs.com/#schedule-a-chat