When I was thinking about the topic I wanted to cover today, there were so many different things popping up, but I kept coming back to a really exciting business the Millionaire’s Club in my school is doing. For context, the Millionaire’s Club is a club that you can start in any school and the focus is to learn more about money and how it works. We explore different topics from personal finance such as budgeting, investing, taxes, insurance, real estate, retirement, and so on. One of the larger projects we work on though is our entrepreneurship project since our club has to be completely self-funded through entrepreneurship projects as opposed to traditional fundraisers. I wrote about using The Simple StartUp as a fundraiser in a previous article, and we apply the Simple StartUp process to our Millionaire’s Club project too.
This year our club was faced with the challenge that many other businesses are facing today… needing to operate in a digital world since face-to-face contact is severely limited. Our members brainstormed and decided we were going to explore creating an online business that could be operated remotely since our members are currently fluctuating between being in school or learning virtually at home. We couldn’t plan on having all students back in the building, and if we had to conduct meetings virtually, it made sense to be able to operate the business virtually too. After many rounds of Collect & Connect, and Mind Mapping, we came up with a virtual game business. The main idea was that we would organize game tournaments for as many different types of games as possible where students could enter and compete from anywhere with the internet, and which would allow for some social interaction with others.
We put forward many different game ideas, and after exploring a couple of different options, settled on Uno, Chess, Rocket League, and Super Smash Bros. as where we wanted to start our venture.
As the advisor, I’m so excited to be sitting back and listening to the back and forth of members, as they put forward ideas, and then just answering questions or giving my two cents when needed!
Next came the logistics of making this happen. We are using Eventbrite as our ticketing platform where we can collect payment, and email addresses for inviting competitors to their games. The price was set at $3 entry which the members deemed affordable and enticing, yet still profitable for the club. They are also offering a $10 gift card prize which means there is a breakeven point that needs to be hit for the tournament to be profitable, but thankfully it’s only 6 people to breakeven with a small profit. Based on the market research we conducted, the members are very confident of smashing that breakeven point easily, though we did note that it will be a slow process for building up players. We will need to be consistent and reliable in what we offer to gain the trust of the market.
In terms of our production process we are leaving the design phase and entering the prototype phase. We now will run a couple of practice tournaments with some test students and prepare for our public launch. Remember the “test” phase is when you find a small group from your target market and either sell the product/service to them or give it for free in exchange for feedback. Once you are satisfied that you are producing something of value that your customers will want, you take out to the public market and really start promoting it.
We are starting off with a virtual Uno Tournament on March 17th at 2pm ET, If you’d like to check out our event page or even participate in the tournament as part of our test group (we’d love your honest feedback), please click the button below.
I’m excited to write a follow up post to this in a couple of weeks and share how it went, good or bad, since the learning experience is going to be so powerful for these students who have just come up with a way to create income for their club!