Position Corporate Board Advisor – Customer Acquisition Company Carpe Diem Social LLC
Compensation 0.1% - 0.25% (2-year vesting, 1-year cliff, quarterly thereafter)
Location Remote (Global, DC metropolitan area preferred) Founder(s) Naza Shelley, CEO
Organizational Stats – Carpe Diem Social
Founded 2018 Legal Rep Jimi Kolawole
Revenue Pre-Revenue Legal Structure
160K friends and family round
Industry Online data, social networking, events,
Number of Users
10,000 Number of Employees
1 fulltime, 4 part-time
Diversity African-American Woman Owned
Leadership Naza Shelley CEO - https://www.linkedin.co <... Hama CMO -
https://www.linkedin.co <... Cho CPO -
https://www.linkedin.co <... Overview
https://technical.ly/dc/2 020/03/31/carpedm district-irl-launching new-virtual-dating show-lovecast/
canceled-too-dating-at a-distance-during coronavirus/
Our minimal viable product, the CarpeDM dating app, was launched in January 2019. Technology has dramatically changed how singles meet, date, and communicate. The results have been a mixed bag. Catfishing, mismatched expectations, ghosting, unsolicited photos, dollars wasted on awkward first dates—with all of the potential pitfalls, it’s easy to see why some singles feel like the dating scene can be a huge waste of time. However, CarpeDM has generated considerable attention in an established market because we do things differently. Carpe Diem Social was founded in 2018 with a simple goal: combine the convenience and utility of digital dating with the chemistry and connection of direct socialization.
The key difference our MVP had with our competitors is our patented video-first approach. Singles who match are given 48 hours to host video chat if they want to keep the match. This initial video chat is limited to 5-10 minutes and is conducted within the app to protect the privacy of the users. By taking this approach, users cut out much of the annoyances of chat-based apps and ensure that their connections are both high interest and high-quality. Talking face-to-face with matches is the quickest, most reliable, and most genuine way to determine the level of interest and chemistry. If both users are still interested after the video-chat, the app allows them to exchange information, continue to chat, and arrange to meet in real life.
Our app generated enthusiastic attention. With little marketing spend, we were able to obtain over 10,000 downloads with an industry-low CPI. With the impact of COVID-19, we saw a 30% increase in app downloads and usage. To continue engaging our target
users we launched a YouTube dating series based on the CarpeDM concept called Lovecast in May 2020. Season 1 of Lovecast was well received, garnering significant press coverage, and winning “Invention of the Year” in the 2020 Technical.ly DC Awards. Additionally, in the last year, we placed 5th in the SXSW Startup of the Year competition, and won the Black Girl Ventures, CAG, and Startuppalooza pitch competitions. Carpe Diem Social LLC is currently funded by founder investments and with seed money from our friends-and-family round.
Board Member’s Impact Potential
After the success and information gained from the last year, we are evolving CarpeDM well past our MVP and releasing an updated version of the app in Q1 of 2021. During Q4 of 2020, the look and feel of our existing website and social media will be updated to correspond with the soft and hard launch of the app. The new version of CarpeDM will also be a subscription model product that marries the concept of traditional matchmaking with convenience of a mobile dating app. Our new business strategy is centered on serving Black female professionals and those seeking to date them - building up subscriptions in that demographic is key to our revenue push. Our main purpose for seeking a corporate board advisor is to assist with how we communicate and build relationships with consumers, influencers, and other thought-leaders in our target audience.
As an early-stage startup, we value creative thinking that connects with users in authentic, interesting, and economical ways. New advisors should expect to be involved with the corporate management team as we brainstorm, plan, execute, and analyze various marketing campaigns for single Black professionals. We are keen to tap into the loyalty and engagement exercised by trusted micro-influencers. A board advisor should have relevant social and professional connections and/or an interest in brokering new relationships for Carpe Diem Social. Although we are not currently fundraising, we would value the ability of a board advisor to attract or make introductions to potential investors. The company is based in Washington, DC, and those with either local or national connections are encouraged to apply. Board advisors will have biweekly calls with the CEO, but they should be comfortable working independently and be a self starter.
What Can Be Accomplished
Since the launch of our MVP, the mobile app CarpeDM, we have been hard at work conducting market research, building our customer base, and raising awareness for our brand. We’ve gained 10k users on our platform with minimal marketing spend, and our analysis of those users has helped us to refine our business strategy and define our target audience. In Q4 of 2020 we will commence the launch of an updated app specifically for Black female professionals. Based on our research, we will be focusing on the Washington, DC metropolitan area—although users can choose to search outside of their geographical location. As the first to offer a combined matchmaking and video-chat dating app to this demographic, we’re setting Carpe Diem Social up as a relationship-and-dating thought leader in a post-COVID world.
We are planning on lining up our marketing campaigns with the soft launch of the new app in January and the hard launch in February. A special holiday episode of Lovecast will first introduce our existing audience to the updates. The timing of the hard launch during the prime periods of January (New Year’s resolutions) and February (Valentine’s Day) will put us on the radar of the seasonal flood of new dating-app adopters. We have a plethora of other strategies in the pipeline: professional profiles of different users, push notifications highlighting new features or Black culture facts, special member perks for date-friendly activities, partnerships with various charitable organizations that users can choose donate a portion of their membership fees to, and once-a-month in-person events for CarpeDM singles and couples. The customer acquisition board advisor will be a key asset for ensuring the quality of the tone and the effect of the messaging. We would appreciate board candidates who are already familiar with the range of topics and general mood of Black Twitter. It will be important to balance between these different campaigns, supplement paid advertising with the power of reputation and word-of mouth, and tailor different messages to smaller niche user categories—all while still managing to speak to both the needs and interests of Black female professionals in a simultaneously adaptive and on-brand tone. The customer acquisition board advisor may also have the chance to get more involved with the technology, financial, or business operations of Carpe Diem Social if they are interested in gaining more experience in those areas. Most of all, the board advisor will gain equity in an exciting new startup and have the chance to mentor and support a minority-women-led business.
Who You’ll Be Working With
CEO and Founder Naza Shelley:
Naza Shelley is a Howard University Law School graduate and attorney who has thrown herself into both the dating and relationship industry and the realm of tech startups. She is the host of Dating and the City and co-creator of Lovecast. Her strong operational and entrepreneurial skills are complimented by her forward communication style and her hard work ethic.
Hannah Cho, CPO:
Hannah Cho is a former software developer that has moved into product management. She sees the design process through from inception to launch. She is a certified scrum master.
Sali Hama, CMO:
Sali Hama is a Howard University Law School graduate and an attorney at Kinsella Media. She brings her solid background in legal media initiatives to the creative branding and strategic advertising of Carpe Diem Social.
What You’ll Bring to the Company
● Experience successfully scaling up the operations of a corporation
● C-Suite corporate experience
● Prior work experience in digital marketing and/or client services
● An open and honest communication style
● The ability to think strategically, identify challenges, and propose solutions ● The facility to talk about products, sales, and build out the founder story ● A trusted professional voice
● Connections to Greek life, professional organizations, and/or nonprofits ● A fondness for working with people
● Creative thought-processes
● An entrepreneurial attitude
Impact Description – Year 1
The below list breaks down the effect that this position will have on the company into a clear set of actionable goals. We recommend that, prior to reaching an agreement, both the board advisor and the CEO review and modify this list, as necessary. The final timeline should guide the advisor's decision-making process throughout their first year and also provide a mutually defined and understandable measure of success for the end of the year.
Within 1 Month, You’ll:
● Meet with the CEO to get up to date on current projects
● Develop a list of key goals and suggested projects to help drive customer acquisition and establish credibility as a dating and relationships brand
● Review past company projects and customer data to become familiar with the company’s branding, tone, and audience
● Create a list of ‘good fit’ professional, social, and charitable organizations for possible company partnerships
● Contribute to a set of criteria for judging the quality and value add of different influencers
Within 3 Months, You’ll
● Expand the company’s network through several ‘warm’ introductions to potential investors, influencers, or partner organizations
● Contribute to the creation of a uniform brand message across multiple digital media platforms
● Represent the company while networking with potential investors or reaching out to your existing business connections
● Assist with the planning of several paid and unpaid customer acquisition projects Within 6 Months, You’ll
● Analyze data from customer acquisition projects to measure their success and identify any micro-demographics within the greater audience of Black
● Offer advice on the creation and implementation of a customer reward program for paying users of the app and its potential impact on brand loyalty
● Provide input on the logistics of offering in-person events
● Weigh in on the financial implications of including various perks in the membership fee or offering them with an additional cost to customers
Within 12 Months, You’ll
● Become a critical sounding board for other team members
● Develop customer acquisition strategies for micro-demographics—transgender scene, capitol hill workers, judges, restaurant/bar owners, teachers—based on their interactions with previous campaigns and app features
● Assess your impact on the company and how you have affected its trajectory ● Define future goals that will build off your prior successes, address new opportunities, and continue to advance the company’s values
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion @ Carpe Diem Social
Our customers come from all walks of life and so do we. We hire great people from a wide variety of backgrounds, not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it makes our company stronger. If you share our values and our enthusiasm for small businesses, you will find a home at Carpe Diem.
Score 3 – Startup Board Initiative
There is a dire need for more diverse viewpoints in the boardrooms of corporate America. At Score 3, we are building on our experience with entrepreneurs in the technology industry to create a fast-moving and innovative solution. Our Startup Board Initiative uncovers diverse board candidates and connects them to our wide-ranging network of tech founders. These experienced corporate leaders’ partner with companies by taking on the role of board advisor or board director in exchange for company equity.
Our initiative offers the most logical and effective entry point for diverse corporate executives: acting as board members for early-stage startups with diverse founders whose obstacles, talents, and dilemmas they are best equipped to handle. Board members can provide input on company strategy, acceptable risks, and priorities. They are valuable sources of warm introductions to new investors, potential employees, prospective customers, or future board members. In exchange, board members gain experience in the rewarding environment of high-tech, high-growth startups and equity in the company. As they develop their board-level leadership skills, they are exposed to some of the latest ideas, technologies, and business practices. Together, founders and board members will be able to grow professionally while shepherding the company towards future success.
The Score 3 Startup Board Initiative provides people of color, women, and LGBTQ business leaders a way to bypass workplace bias and unfair stereotypes. Board members receive personalized help to gain skills and create business connections that will enable them to take their careers to the next level. Likewise, founders acquire the critical social capital and additional business expertise that they need to accelerate the growth of their company. The technology industry is known for moving fast and breaking things, and it’s time to apply that philosophy to disrupting the homogeneity of the corporate board room.