Home – New Forums New here? Share your story Launching HeyGenius – over the phone concierge

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  • #996212
    Entraction
    Member
    • Total posts: 17
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    Hey all!

    I’m Luke, I actually registered a few years ago under this name, getting into Bitcoin mining back whilst I was in medical school. Fast forward a few years, and though I’ve graduated and making a decent living, I really needed to scratch the entrepreneur itch so I’ve taken a year off clinical medicine to explore ventures :O

    HeyGenius is going to be my first full-time, serious endeavour. It’s an over-the-phone concierge, which basically means you call a toll-free number to connect to one of our geniuses (maybe not, but at the very least, people good at problem solving!) to solve what you need, without a smartphone or internet.

    Despite the rapid advancement of technology, there is still a segment of Australians who don’t utilise the sharing economy or other aspects of technology to help improve their lives. We want to open that up by making it ridiculously easy and personable to access this technology. Things that seem simple to someone growing up around technology seem foreign and difficult to those who haven’t made the switch. We want to help them!

    I hope to link with a lot of businesses because after all, that’s what a concierge is about. So expect to see a lot of me around pestering for ways to connect your business to our users!

    #1206165
    Dave Gillen – Former FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 2,566
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    Welcome to Flying Solo Luke!

    Great to have you aboard and we really appreciate you sharing your story. Best of luck with your venture and looking forward to updates as you go. :)

    Dave

    #1206166
    Entraction
    Member
    • Total posts: 17
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    Cheers Dave :)

    #1206167
    TrentKing
    Member
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    Hey Luke,

    Seems very promising! Looking forward to see what’s next!

    Trent

    #1206168
    Entraction
    Member
    • Total posts: 17
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    Thanks Trent! First hurdles first – getting people to wrap their head around the concept ;)

    #1206169
    J.Zkan
    Member
    • Total posts: 87
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    Hi Luke,

    Great idea! Looking forward to your updates.

    #1206170
    James Millar
    Participant
    • Total posts: 1,739
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    Entraction, post: 245045, member: 50890 wrote:
    Hey all!

    I’m Luke, I actually registered a few years ago under this name, getting into Bitcoin mining back whilst I was in medical school. Fast forward a few years, and though I’ve graduated and making a decent living, I really needed to scratch the entrepreneur itch so I’ve taken a year off clinical medicine to explore ventures :O

    HeyGenius is going to be my first full-time, serious endeavour. It’s an over-the-phone concierge, which basically means you call a toll-free number to connect to one of our geniuses (maybe not, but at the very least, people good at problem solving!) to solve what you need, without a smartphone or internet.

    Despite the rapid advancement of technology, there is still a segment of Australians who don’t utilise the sharing economy or other aspects of technology to help improve their lives. We want to open that up by making it ridiculously easy and personable to access this technology. Things that seem simple to someone growing up around technology seem foreign and difficult to those who haven’t made the switch. We want to help them!

    I hope to link with a lot of businesses because after all, that’s what a concierge is about. So expect to see a lot of me around pestering for ways to connect your business to our users!

    Ok some it seems to be a “000” emergency / concierge to direct your call to an expert. Presumably in a particular field of expertise (is this B2B or B2C or both)? Concept seems easy enough to explain and people certainly like convenience. As you point out not everyone is purely online.

    Now the hurdles. If this is B2C then you are probably going to have experts being tradies, doctors, accountants, lawyers, IT pros consulting with individuals for personal problems. Is this like service central (and similar portals) who also have an 1800 number? Alternatively, if it’s mostly B2B then the business owner might be looking for longer term relationships and have some reluctance to establish over a random call (compared to a referral).

    So, who are the closest competitors to what you are proposing and how are you different?

    And then the biggest challenge of all……how do you plan on selling it? What financial resources do you intend to devote to this? The success stories in almost all of these portals have burned considerable marketing cash to establish awareness. Those that build a great platform with a good idea and hope that it will take off without committing serious funds are almost always disappointed.

    Helping build better businesses and better lives with expert financial and taxation advice. [email protected] www.360partners.com.au 03 9005 4900
    #1206171
    Entraction
    Member
    • Total posts: 17
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    Hi James – thanks for your interest :)

    To be honest, it actually started out with trying to get the sharing economy out to people who don’t have technology. The principle vision of the concierge is to provide a service that is convenient, reliable and cost-saving as well. It is a B2C concierge. Also, as it is over-the-phone, we can do a lot of other things like booking trips, online shopping and the like. Sounds simple but for a good proportion of people, actually isn’t, or is time consuming (searching for the best price among various sites, etc).

    Service central and ServiceSeeking aren’t quite exactly it although they are a portal for some local jobs so they will indeed be a competitor. I think the closest competitor is actually the customer themselves – i.e. they will just try and get it done how they’ve always done it (or just given up), even if there’s better alternatives.

    On the finance side, there are a few options that I’ve been tossing around, but the primary ones include referral fees from services we recommend (I am working on methods to eliminate bias), a pay per minute service and a subscription based model. I agree that marketing and awareness is a huge aspect of this and have considered the costs involved to get it to a successful stage.

    Cheers

    JamesMillar, post: 245107, member: 5318 wrote:
    Ok some it seems to be a “000” emergency / concierge to direct your call to an expert. Presumably in a particular field of expertise (is this B2B or B2C or both)? Concept seems easy enough to explain and people certainly like convenience. As you point out not everyone is purely online.

    Now the hurdles. If this is B2C then you are probably going to have experts being tradies, doctors, accountants, lawyers, IT pros consulting with individuals for personal problems. Is this like service central (and similar portals) who also have an 1800 number? Alternatively, if it’s mostly B2B then the business owner might be looking for longer term relationships and have some reluctance to establish over a random call (compared to a referral).

    So, who are the closest competitors to what you are proposing and how are you different?

    And then the biggest challenge of all……how do you plan on selling it? What financial resources do you intend to devote to this? The success stories in almost all of these portals have burned considerable marketing cash to establish awareness. Those that build a great platform with a good idea and hope that it will take off without committing serious funds are almost always disappointed.

    #1206172
    bb1
    Participant
    • Total posts: 4,485
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    Entraction, post: 245399, member: 50890 wrote:
    It is a B2C concierge.

    Why, I always query why do people limit any concept to just one part of the market.

    Entraction, post: 245399, member: 50890 wrote:
    . Also, as it is over-the-phone, we can do a lot of other things like booking trips, online shopping and the like. Sounds simple but for a good proportion of people, actually isn’t, or is time consuming (searching for the best price among various sites, etc).

    Have you done your research, what is a ”good proportion”, before you go to far, do some research to see if there really is a need for what you are offering.

    Entraction, post: 245399, member: 50890 wrote:
    On the finance side, there are a few options that I’ve been tossing around, but the primary ones include referral fees from services we recommend (I am working on methods to eliminate bias), a pay per minute service and a subscription based model. I agree that marketing and awareness is a huge aspect of this and have considered the costs involved to get it to a successful stage.

    Cheers

    Just remember a lot of the services you will be trying to target to be in your ”genius” field, could be getting very shy of taking up yet another referral service, who is only there to make a profit from their hard work. IMHO

    #1206173
    Entraction
    Member
    • Total posts: 17
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    Thanks bb1. I feel that a B2B concierge service involves significantly different requests that I am unfamiliar with at this point in time. What kind of services do you think a B2B concierge would help a business with, such as your own?

    I have done some broad research but am going to be doing validation in the form of offering this service essentially free to anyone I meet and my own circle of friends first. The statistics state that 21% of Australians do not own a smartphone (Deloitte, 2015), and 40% of Australians also have never heard of the sharing economy or the services represented by it. Also, 27% of Australians speak a language other than english at home (not to say of course that they can’t). 2-3% of Australians can speak very little English at all, and the primary demographics for those who can’t are Chinese, Vietnamese, and Italian.

    With regards to marketing… what proportion of a business cost is devoted to marketing outside of referrals? And what would you say constitutes hard work?

    #1206175
    APICCollege
    Member
    • Total posts: 6
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    Entraction, post: 245045, member: 50890 wrote:
    Hey all!

    I’m Luke, I actually registered a few years ago under this name, getting into Bitcoin mining back whilst I was in medical school. Fast forward a few years, and though I’ve graduated and making a decent living, I really needed to scratch the entrepreneur itch so I’ve taken a year off clinical medicine to explore ventures :O

    HeyGenius is going to be my first full-time, serious endeavour. It’s an over-the-phone concierge, which basically means you call a toll-free number to connect to one of our geniuses (maybe not, but at the very least, people good at problem solving!) to solve what you need, without a smartphone or internet.

    Despite the rapid advancement of technology, there is still a segment of Australians who don’t utilise the sharing economy or other aspects of technology to help improve their lives. We want to open that up by making it ridiculously easy and personable to access this technology. Things that seem simple to someone growing up around technology seem foreign and difficult to those who haven’t made the switch. We want to help them!

    I hope to link with a lot of businesses because after all, that’s what a concierge is about. So expect to see a lot of me around pestering for ways to connect your business to our users!
    Hi Luke, thanks for sharing your story. Good luck with it all

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