In a world where it is getting harder and more frustrating to get the ideal business partner or startup co-founder, it has become more important for online platforms to be created to make it easier for people with great ideas to find people with great skill-sets in order to build the idea together. Finding a co-founder is the most important thing for any startup because it usually is arguably the first hire, and that is what will determine whether your startup will be successful or not.
Of course, there are a few other things that will determine the success of your startup aside from having just a good co-founder. For instance, garnering media coverage by using tried, tested, and proven PR strategies can increase attention to your startup leading to more success. Additionally, reaching out to journalists and building strong relationships with them can also improve the level of publicity you get. All these can be done by using a startup-based affordable PR firm like Pressfarm to help, instead of using expensive PR experts who promise nothing but thin air.
In the case when you have an idea but lack the technical skills to turn the dream to a reality, getting the right co-founder who will develop your idea is not easy but I have made a list of the best places online to get a co-founder for your startup.
Founded out of the utter frustration of finding a business partner, co-founder and investor in the current world, FounderDating is one of the best platforms for anyone looking to find a co-founder, entrepreneur, partner or investor. The network has a group of business-minded people divided into three categories as follows:
Includes both serial entrepreneurs and first time entrepreneurs. Business minded people who aspire to be great entrepreneurs also fall into this category
This includes people who already started a project, or have an idea and are looking for someone to start a project with and those who have already started a project but have no partner yet.
This network includes experienced professionals who want to mentor entrepreneurs or startups for equity and not cash.
The process of joining FounderDating is rigorous since every single applicant is screened to ensure that they meet the standards set for the site. Also you have to create an account on LinkedIn if you don’t have one yet because the network uses LinkedIn like a sign-in tool. LinkedIn is also where most people will connect with you outside the site since it’s the most professional social media network around.
Update: In July 2016, Founderdating joined hands with CoFounderslab to form one of the biggest network of entreprenuers around.
StartHawk is a new startup looking to create a community where entrepreneurs and co-founders can meet and discuss about their ideas. Primarily, StartHawk works by matchmaking founders and co-founders from any place around the globe. The goal of this company is to help any entrepreneur to launch their idea even when they do not have the skillset required to build it.
Membership is currently free to join, and you can easily start searching for a co-founder or join hands to build something with someone you meet on the platform.
Startup weekends are 54-hour long events that happen over the course of the weekend beginning Friday and ending on Sunday. Entrepreneurs, designers, marketers, product managers, developers and startup enthusiasts meet here to build products and launch them in just one weekend. It is the absolute meeting place for everyone who wants to interact with like-minded people who are excited about the idea of building their own businesses and products. Stats indicate that 36% of the startups launched here over these weekends have gone on to become strong businesses which are currently thriving. During the event you also get to meet the movers and shakers of your community and who knows, maybe you will strike gold, an investor and a co-founder to form the unbeatable startup team.
Beginning with open mic pitches on Friday, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their team. Over Saturday and Sunday teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing LEAN Startup Methodologies and building a minimal viable product. On Sunday evening teams demo their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts.
CoFoundersLab prides itself of a network of 40,000 entrepreneurs, advisers and interns who make a great combination all together for the newest entrepreneurs and startups. To join the site is free, unlike FounderDating, there isn’t any screening involved. You post your profile for free and are allowed to search the whole network for your ideal partner.
Using the basic plan or free plan if you like, you can contact a maximum of 5 co-founders per month. However, a payment plan is available that offers a wide range of features like the ability to contact an unlimited number of co-founders per month, suggestions of recommended candidates for your startup and priority in search listings where you get seen on top of the results page when entrepreneurs are searching for co-founders. Other advantages of the subscription plan include the ability to see who viewed you, a compatibility score gauge and advanced filtering. If you do choose to join CoFoundersLab, it is like a dating network for entrepreneurs, advisors and interns and has the largest pool of the same so far. The plans start from $20 per month for 3 months, $17 per month for 6 months and $10 per month for 12 months.
This has been compared to the dating site Match.com, but for the tech co-founders, developers, designers and other geeks all over the world. Creating an account is simple and not subject to any rigorous checks. On this platform, you can find your co-founder in whatever shape and skill-set you desire. The platform accommodates developers, designers, engineers, marketers, product managers, business developers, sales persons and advisors. You can also launch your startup on the site, get your very first customers and get funding.
Younoodle is a totally different platform in terms of operation and it uses competitions and contests to connect co-founders, entrepreneurs and advisors together. Itself a startup, has carried out 400 different contests and challenges. After the contests, opportunities arise for the various co-founders and entrepreneurs including the ability to get funding from the investors who were following the competitions. Universities, governments, accelerators and corporations have used the platform to judge and screen applicants for various competitions or funding deals.
FoundersNation provides a very simple search tool for finding your co-founder or for checking out people who want to be co-founders and are looking for an opportunity to arise. It’s basically a very simple platform. Logging in can be done via Facebook and that allows the people viewing your profile to know that you are a real person. You can search for co-founders from a particular location with specific skill sets using the platform’s search tool.
For someone with very little technical know-how, this is the place to be looking for your co-founder. CodeArmy will teach you how to build your product in a few weeks and launch it. All you have to do is pitch your idea, get linked to the most appropriate Chief Technology Officer (CTO) whom you will work alongside. Build your product under the guidance of the CTO then launch. You can also browse through all the ideas from other founders on CodeArmy and find one that fits your skill sets, and personality then dive right in as a co-founder.
9. Lead Candy
Lead Candy is one of the most revolutionary ways to get connections with entrepreneurs, marketers, developers, co-founders and partners today. It bridges the distance between your social media accounts and has all your connections in one portal. You can search the platform for any type of professional you want to link to and get in touch with them in a minute. When you search for a developer on the platform, for example, what happens is that you get several results and whichever name you choose depending on your location and their location, the Lead Candy tool analyzes your social media connections and theirs as well. It will come up with someone you know that knows someone who knows the developer you are interested in. Lead Candy searches your social media accounts including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus to find someone whom you and the partner you are interested in know in common. That common person between both of you will then be contacted to connect both of you. A very solid way of making sure you know who you know and how, in order to make a solid interaction when you meet them. Definitely good enough to find your co-founder.
Meetup allows you to create a local group or find one that already exists in your location where you can meet with other business marketers, product managers, developers, engineers, designers, etc to work on ideas that you passionate about. It is most preferred for a local meetup and you will be surprised how many people want to get involved in building your idea or making the ideal team for your startup. Go join the meetup groups today and in one of those you might just meet the ideal co-founder close to you.
Have I forgotten any other website that is a great resource for finding co-founders for startups? Have anything to add onto this article? Let me know by chatting with us on Twitter @thepressfarm.