GoShow is the first cloud-based platform connecting brands with sports filmmakers, talent and media publishers. By bringing all parties under one roof, they provide a global eco-system for the collaborative production and distribution of engaging video content, at scale. So whether you’re a brand looking for sponsorship opportunities with guaranteed viral exposure, or athletes looking for a filmmaker and project funding, GoShow makes sports video content marketing more accessible and effective for all. Mark McDermott, Founder and Director of GoShow chats to Startup Giants …
It’s amazing how when you actually get moving on a project, the parameters can change. Did this happen with GoShow?
Absolutely, my initial concept with GoShow was to connect athletes with video editors – to transform all of the footage that would otherwise lie dormant on the memory cards of an athlete’s GoPro. We wanted to turn that wasted footage into verifiable content which takes a professional eye to do.
Very quickly we found that we had scores of videographers all over the world signing up to be part of the service and their unified question to us was: did we need them to shoot footage as well?
Suddenly we realised that we had a large database of filmmakers all over the globe that could shoot, edit and produce films for brands and agencies, at scale.
When the brands caught wind of our concept it turned up a notch as well. Most brands don’t have the budgets to fly globally and film every sponsored athlete’s event to the high standards that are needed to appear on widespread and respected media publishing companies.
This then led onto the evolution of GoShow as it stands today, a fully scalable cloud-based production company. And for an extra fee we also distribute content to media companies in our network to enable brands to be seen globally and the publishers to fill up their content schedules.
What made you choose Startup Giants over the other options?
Because their selection process is so thorough, we always felt that if we were successful with them, it would always be a case of ‘when’ our business was going to come to life, and not ‘if’. Their model of learning and application felt as though we were constantly moving in an upwards direction towards our goal. Startup Giants was fluid and flexible enough so that we could keep our day jobs which made us feel secure. This is a direct comparison to other investor sites where they have an intensive three month bootcamp which you need to quit your job for, and after all of the frenzy, if your plan isn’t up to scratch in those three months then your chance for funding is over. I choose steady and applied over frenetic any day.
Who built your platform?
We’d initially planned to outsource the build but that cost would have been astronomical, so instead we decided to build it ourselves. Yes it’s taken longer, but we now know the ins and outs of every bit of GoShow – if there’s a glitch somewhere we can access and work at the exact piece of code in seconds. It’s also means that if we hire someone to support the ongoing development, we can manage them effectively as we know how to train and time manage each mini project.
We like to keep things lean and agile, allowing us to pivot fast and steer the GoShow ship around any obstacles that come at us – without having to spend too much money. We are constantly learning from our users, and whilst our vision has always remained firm, the path to get there often changes course. So having the knowledge from building the platform ourselves has made it possible to navigate changes.
Is timing really important for growing your concept?
Yes absolutely and you want to be able to jump on your idea when it’s right. For us, we know that by 2022, 90% of the content online will be video based – whether branded or unbranded. Companies like Red Bull have their production process absolutely nailed so they know that they can stand out in the sea of video content. Smaller brands know that they have to compete and we’re helping them achieve their desired level of exposure. Amazingly crafted digital content is no longer out of their league or budgets. We know that this is the right time, so it’s worth the late nights and amounts of sheer hard work.
How did you find the training experience?
It’s really great, particularly if it’s your first startup, to be supported by people who have been there and done it before. The biggest challenge that any startup has to face, is dealing with the unknown. It’s like you’re driving down a dark road in the middle of the night, and you can only see five metres in front of your car where the headlights are shining. To know that you can lean on their experience is what gives you the courage to drive that extra five metres forward so that another five metres of light appears in front of you. Every inch of the way, advice is tailored to your project’s needs and you learn so much to apply and growth hack your way forwards.
How did you market this initially?
Social media was our friend in a big way. After devising a load of campaigns which we knew we’d have to monitor and review via trial and error, we pushed it out over Facebook and Instagram. All of a sudden a Los Angeles based app needed circa 600 videos to stock up their files on extreme sports. Because they were paying for the content upfront this provided us the funds to survive and to market GoShow in other ways. From there we were able to kick off more targeted growth strategies which helped us onboard a huge amount of world class filmmakers.
Did you ever think of giving up?
Yes, definitely. The struggle was real. We reached a number of low points where we were extremely burnt out from all the work, and really wondering whether or not it was worth pursuing. But there is only one true key to becoming successful at anything… don’t stop until you are. It’s in those low points when you look to people in your support network to really boost you up. There’s a system with Startup Giants that means that someone is there to talk to at any time. You don’t have to waste five emails trying to schedule a call in. I know that I can reach out every day if I want to, and always get a positive response that would see GoShow moving forwards.
Name a great moment which spurred you on …
Being voted into Hype Foundation 2017’s Top 50 Most Innovative Startups in the Sports Industry. Not only was it a great pat on the back for our efforts so far, it came at just the right time as we had reached the point where we needed to PR it massively and the coverage has been fantastic. From all the publicity we’ve experienced a large number of entrepreneurs who we really respect reach out to us and offer us guidance and advice. It’s also given us a lot of exposure through networking and events, connecting us to loads of investors and key decision-makers at leading sports brands. This has been invaluable and we’re still very grateful for it.
Any words for people sitting at home with an idea?
Stop analysing whether or not you have the assets available to make your idea work, Startup Giants can provide all of those, instead spend your time growing your knowledge of your market place. There’s a real requirement from Startup Giants that you know your niche market inside out. Insider knowledge from working within a workplace can very quickly expose niche areas of black holes that can be filled via a tech innovation. They are keen to source founders’ who have concept stage tech based ideas, so check your criteria and apply. From that point on, value every bit of advice that is offered to you. Calls, texts, huddles. You will learn so much and potentially go from being someone with an idea, to someone with a very real offering for the world.
Cherry has worked in branding, copywriting, communications, and PR for over 14 years, and is Chief Wordsmith at Startup Giants and our main point of contact for journalists and editors.