Happy New Year! Here Are Some Great One-Sentence Startup Pitches

You amaze me. When I asked you for the best one-sentence pitch you could come up with for your startup, I was expecting 20, perhaps 30 comments and a handful of emails.

Instead, we received hundreds (670+ to be more precise) submissions, and I appreciated the lively discussions from the community at large – thanks to everyone who jumped in.

And apologies for the delay, the selection process took way more time than anticipated. I wish it was possible for us to give feedback to every single one of you, but alas, we’re only human.

This wasn’t really about the competition or promoting your startup in our comment section – though many seemed to think that was the goal of the post – but forcing you to be as concise and clear about your company’s big vision as possible because it’s an important exercise for any entrepreneur.

After all, you will find yourself explaining your startup mission to a lot of people – customers, relatives, partners, your friends, potential investors etc. – over and over again, so it’s good to have a solid foundation and to think about this kind of stuff carefully.

On that note, I was also amazed at how incredibly long some people can make a single sentence. :)

To be clear, the five best one-sentence pitches we’ve selected aren’t necessarily the best businesses or ideas. They’re merely what Adeo and I thought were great one-sentence pitches, based on the criteria that we outlined from the get-go, and also good ideas in our opinion. Startup founders who opted for another sentence format, multiple sentences or leaving out too much of what’ve asked for, were obviously not selected.

To repeat, what we wanted from your one-sentence pitch is to learn what your company name is, truly understand what it is that you’re building, who you’re going to sell or offer it to, what specific problem you’re trying to solve, and how your solution makes you unique.

To avoid at all times: vagueness (“we’re building a platform for SMBs who want to sell more stuff by using our software”), meaningless buzzwords (“we’re developing a post-PC, people-centric mobile app”) and empty, irrelevant words such as ‘innovative’, ‘revolutionary’, ‘award-winning’, ‘amazing’, ‘premier’, ‘fantastic’, ‘patent-pending’, ‘next-generation’ and the like.

As I’ve mentioned plenty of times before, it’s not as easy as it looks, and I sincerely hope the ones listed below demonstrate clearly how it’s done properly.

A big kudos to Adeo Ressi for the help in judging and a Happy New Year to all of you!

Here’s the ‘winner’ of the bunch:

— “My company, Flat-Club, is developing an online marketplace to help students and alumni of top universities find short-term accommodation by leveraging existing social networks to create trust.”

The runner-up:

— “My company, Neo, is developing an online lending platform to help first time car buyers get an affordable car loan by assessing credit risk based on the borrower’s real-time financial and social data as credit history.”

Four other pitches we rated highly (honorable mentions if you will):

— “My company, Mocku.ps, is developing a Web application to help product design teams quickly share mockups, precisely communicate and collaboratively refine design ideas with dead simple drag and drop tools.”

— “Our company, KIDzOUT, is developing a mobile application to help parents find nearby diaper changing stations, kid-friendly restaurants, play areas, or medical services using our proprietary, national database of over 260,000 known locations.”

— “My company, ScatchApp, is developing a mobile application to help designers transform their paper sketches into working, interactive mock-ups using phone’s built-in camera.”

— “My company, Bombfell.com, is developing a monthly subscription for clothes to help tech geeks dress well, using technology to curate individual wardrobes at large scale.”

And here’s five that made me smile:

— “My company, CryoSitters, is developing a way to cryogenically freeze children for short periods of time to help parents that cannot find babysitters, with plans to eventually package our technology in affordable home kits.”

— “My company RG Media makes videos that help you avoid murdering whatever brain cells are left in your skull after a lifetime listlessly flipping through 500 channels without finding a god damm thing by secretly replacing your regular routine video experience with stuff that doesn’t suck ass.”

— “My company, Rummmmage, is building a cloud-based real-time social marketplace platform that lets you buy your neighbors garbage to rummage through it for discarded treasure.”

— “My company, ACME Industries, is developing a strategic portal accelerator incubation network on the information superhighway to help technological end users find informational constructs with minimal effort.”

— “My company is developing a website to help men masturbate using videos of naked women.”

Congratulations to the ‘winners’ and thanks again for all your input.