GENERAL FAQ

DO YOU HAVE A HOTEL BLOCK OR DISCOUNTS?

We have not secured a hotel partner. 

DO YOU SHARE YOUR MEDIA LIST?

No, we try to be as respectful as we can to our press so they are not inundated with requests. 

TO QUALIFY FOR LAUNCH 1.0, DOES THE PRODUCT NEED TO BE FINISHED OR NEAR COMPLETION FOR ME TO APPLY?

Our goal is to have companies open their sites, at least for beta clients, at the event.  We expect that folks applying for LAUNCH 1.0 will have only partially functional sites, so we accept screenshots/mockups and even wireframes for sections of the site that are not yet complete. In your application, simply state: "Here are the pieces that will be ready for the LAUNCH Festival." 

WHAT IS THE LAUNCH TEAM LOOKING FOR IN A 1.0?

We are looking for AWESOME, beautiful products that will make an audience of industry veterans say, "Wow!".  You can go here to see past pitches and get a better idea of the kinds of companies we have previously selected. 

DOES LAUNCH ACCEPT HARDWARE PRODUCTS?

YES! We love hardware! 

HOW SIGNIFICANT DOES MY PRODUCT NEED TO BE FOR THE 2.0 COMPETITION?

It has to be a feature or product that GigaOm, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, Mashable, and ReadWrite all want to cover. It has to be so new that Robert Scoble, Om Malik, Dave McClure, Chris Sacca and Michael Arrington say, "That's f-ing cool!" when they see it on stage. Think to yourself, "Self, is this really killer and impressive?" Are Robert Scoble, Shervin Pishevar, Kevin Rose, Chris Dixon or Dave Morin going to tweet: "This rocks!"?

MY STARTUP HAS SOFT LAUNCHED -- AM I ELIGIBLE FOR THE 1.0 COMPETITION?

If your site is available to the public but you have received no press or blog coverage, you can apply for 1.0 but you must put your site behind a LaunchRock or similar type of wall and remove any blog posts that talk about your product.

IF I AM PIVOTING MY COMPANY, WHICH COMPETITION SHOULD I APPLY TO?

All pivots are on the 2.0 track. If you launched as one type of product -- or did significant alpha or beta testing of a product you built -- and want to demo something totally different at the LAUNCH Festival, it's a pivot. For example, Jason Goldberg founded Fabulis, a gay social network, then pivoted to Fab.com, flash sales on beautifully designed items.

IF MY PRODUCT IS AN APP AND IT'S AVAILABLE IN AN APP STORE, AM I ELIGIBLE FOR THE 1.0 COMPETITION?

You are not eligible for 1.0. If you are testing an amazing new version of your app via TestFlight, you are eligible for the 2.0 track. Remember, 2.0 products have to be WOW; you cannot add a simple feature to your app and get a slot on stage.

IF I'VE GOTTEN A COUPLE OF PRESS STORIES ABOUT MY COMPANY, CAN I STILL LAUNCH @ LAUNCH?

If your product has been covered in the press, you are probably disqualified from the 1.0 competition. If the story doesn't show or describe your product (e.g., "Jason is working on a stealth startup called inside.com in the nwes space") that might be okay. If you only have coverage on your friend's blog, we suggest asking them to take the story down. You also need to put your site behind a firewall that says only "[Company Name] - coming soon" (as you can see at kokua.com).

IF MY WEBSITE EXPLAINS MY PRODUCT, AM I DISQUALIFIED FROM THE LAUNCH 1.0 COMPETITION?

Yes. However, if no one has seen it yet, you can simply put your website behind a "coming soon" firewall or LaunchRock page where interested people can give you their email address. Also, make sure your company Twitter, Facebook, AngelList etc pages also say "coming soon".

DOES LAUNCH ACCEPT COMPANIES FROM OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES?

Yes! We love amazing products no matter where in the world they are made or where their team resides. If you are accepted, please note that you will need to travel to the Bay Area in early-February (for mandatory in-person rehearsals) as well as in late February for the event. We cannot cover any startup's travel/lodging cost.

WHY MUST MY PRODUCT BE NEW TO LAUNCH ON STAGE?

New products get asses in seats. The press, pundits, VCs, angels and bloggers are simply not going to come to the presentations if the products have already been covered on blogs or on your website. We want people's attention riveted at the stage so that you have 2,000 people watching when you launch LIVE. We do this for the benefit of all 40+ startups.

HOW MUCH TIME DO COMPANIES HAVE ON STAGE?

Each company will have 4 minutes for the presentation and 5 to 10 minutes for Q&A.