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Episode #80 with Jacqueline Garrett

21st Oct 2022 | 38mins 28secs

On this episode of the NTP podcast we chat with Jacqueline Garrett, Founder and CEO at GGWP Academy. We find out more on the creation of GGWP, the need for this in the gaming world, working as female founder in tech and GGWP’s recent opportunities for fundraising. Hope you enjoy the episode!

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Show Notes

Here you can source all the things we have talked about in the podcast whether that be books, events, meet-up groups and what’s new in the Newcastle tech scene.

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In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • (00:38)

    What does GGWP Academy stand for?

  • (04:24)

    How was GGWP created or formed?

  • (10:41)

    How has gaming changed?

  • (18:18)

    What is next for GGWP?

  • (19:13)

    Tell us about your crowdfunding opportunities.

  • (22:05)

    What’s the GGWP team look like for the next couple of hires for you?.

  • (24:18)

    Can you tell us about the growth of GGWP in the US?

  • (26:18)

    What appeals to you about Newcastle?

  • (28:32)

    What has your experience been like as a female founder in a technology company?

  • (38:00)

    How can people get in touch with you?

00:00:20:17 – 00:00:38:19
James MacDonald
Welcome to another episode of NewyTechPeople Podcast. On today’s episode, we have Jacqueline Garrett from GGWP Academy. GGWP I was trying to practice before you came in to have it rolling off the tongue. What does GGWP Academy stand for?

00:00:38:19 – 00:00:52:23
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Good Game Well-played. It’s kind of like the hashtag or the or the prompt or whatever you would type into the game or into your comms when you’re playing another person. So you know, at the end of a match or at the end of a game, you might time GG or GGWP.

00:00:52:23 – 00:01:05:17
James MacDonald
Which gives us better insight in who you are, what you do exactly for the audience, for those who don’t know who you are. You are Newcastle local, but for those who don’t know who you are. Could you give us a bit of an update?

00:01:05:18 – 00:01:25:23
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So GGWP Academy is an e-learning and influencer marketplace platform for gamers globally. So what that really means is that we teach people to become YouTubers or Twitch streamers or or Facebook gaming streamers, and then we give them opportunities via our marketplace to work with brands from all over the world.

00:01:26:04 – 00:01:42:14
James MacDonald
That’s phenomenal. And I know a little bit the backstory, but for those that don’t know how JJ WP came about, I don’t imagine you just fall into, you know, creating a marketplace or an in-person platform from scratch. Can you give people an understanding of where they come from?

00:01:42:15 – 00:02:06:17
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, for sure. So my son at the age of nine started well. He was playing Pokemon from five onwards, and this is just in local competitions. A good game or, you know, wherever on these days. And so he started to qualify for bigger and bigger competitions, whether it be oceanic. So, you know, whatever. And then he was invited to the World Pokemon Championships.

00:02:06:17 – 00:02:25:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And the first one, I believe, was Anaheim that he went to and, and over the next three years we went to Nashville and then Washington as well. So yeah, he went to three world championships in, in Pokemon and as part of him being signed to an E-sports team so that they would pay for his travel and everything else.

00:02:26:08 – 00:02:50:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It basically meant that he had to start creating content on YouTube. Yeah. And through doing that I realized that there was a massive fragmented industry here that was, you know, there was this big gap that nobody was really playing in, and it seemed like a really interesting place. And I really wanted to add a layer of education, professionalism and structure to the world of gaming influence.

00:02:50:12 – 00:02:56:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It’s been a little bit of the Wild West over the last five, seven years, and I can’t wait to change that.

00:02:56:21 – 00:03:09:07
James MacDonald
Yeah, especially the New York kids, as you said, by age nine who are then mandated to create content online in the, you know, the big wide world of social media can be a bit dangerous, I imagine. And as you said, the wild, Wild West. Yeah.

00:03:09:20 – 00:03:32:01
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And I mean, at nine or even at 18 necessarily, you don’t know what it means to build a personal brand. You don’t know what it means to engage an audience or to grow that audience. So unless you’ve been to uni or done it previously or gone to tape or learned to, you know, through your job or something like that, it’s not necessarily a skill that you’re, you know, that you come out of school learning.

00:03:32:01 – 00:03:38:12
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I really wanted to teach people things like, you know, personal branding and social media one on one and stuff like that. Yeah.

00:03:38:12 – 00:03:49:06
James MacDonald
Then I imagine maybe the docs, I bet the trolls and you know, at a very impressionable age, being attacked online would be massive.

00:03:49:07 – 00:04:07:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, huge. One of the one of the things I learned very, very quickly about managing my son’s accounts online was the amount of trolls that will say literally anything to a nine year old. So and I always had to keep my emotions in check. But some deal with those things fairly swiftly and yeah.

00:04:08:09 – 00:04:24:12
James MacDonald
That’s disgusting. Yeah. Meant as an obvious need that you know, I manage. That’ll help with that or educate t point. So your son’s having some success online. You see an opportunity there. How was JJ? WP created or formed?

00:04:24:23 – 00:04:48:12
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So in 2018, as a non-technical founder, I founded Gwp. So I did that by writing 20 modules of training and that was all on the social media side and on the personal branding side. And I put all of that together. I started pitching accelerators because being a soldier, you need to obviously find someone who can build the product, who can join this journey.

00:04:48:21 – 00:05:09:22
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I had to really build up that narrative. I had to start showing that there was a market for this and get some funding under my belt so that I could find the right people and attract the right people. I was accepted to the lead sports accelerator in Berlin, and that was only two months after founding. JG Gwp Just by myself, I just pitched online.

00:05:10:06 – 00:05:34:05
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
I think I did about 8 hours worth of pitching to get on onto that accelerator, and that was in Berlin. So I went to Berlin for the second half of 2018, left the family at home, as you do, and came back with a very clear understanding of what I needed to do to get the next load of funding, find my co-founders and start building this product.

00:05:34:15 – 00:05:46:24
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I continued to build out the the education piece, but when I came back, I was actually doing some mentoring and and helping people out in the Sydney Start UPS Facebook Group.

00:05:47:10 – 00:05:48:15
James MacDonald
Which is a pretty engaged group.

00:05:48:18 – 00:06:08:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It is actually a really good group for start ups. And I was just offering assistance in terms of pitch decks and, you know, things that I knew really well that I could help other people with. And I’ve, I met Cassie and John and they were working on a traditional sports app that would find talent and match people and stuff like that.

00:06:08:19 – 00:06:37:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And after about a month of getting to know their start up and them, we realized pretty quickly that we were building a very similar product that our that our skills were really complementary to each other. I mean John is a fantastic CTO. He comes from the background of freelancer and spaceship era. And then you’ve got Cassie, who has previously worked on a number of different early stage startups, including freelancer and spaceship, right?

00:06:38:03 – 00:07:00:18
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So they knew each other early on and it just worked out that we happened to be building very similar products, very different industries. But with them being both gamers, it worked out really well. I was able to convince them, you know, that our industry was in a massive state of growth while theirs was kind of in decline. Unfortunately, yeah, for traditional sports, but yes.

00:07:01:00 – 00:07:09:01
James MacDonald
Not. So you’ve then found your technical co-founders, I assume, and then gone about building the product from the ground up.

00:07:09:03 – 00:07:37:05
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yes. So they stayed on full time at their jobs for the next year and a half. And it wasn’t until. So John is the CTO. Cassie is a CMO, even though she also acts as an operational manager. But we moved very quickly into Start Mate, which was in 2021, and we once we got a little bit of funding behind us, pre-seed funding we did with Flying Fox and Scale investors and and Start Mate.

00:07:37:11 – 00:08:05:11
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And at that point we brought them on full time and from there it’s just been really, really quick. So it took us a little while to get going, coming from that non-technical background and really I think we kind of needed that because the industry was still very much even forming and still in its infancy, very much so. Now we have a very clear understanding of what the industry looks like and even what it’s going to look like for the next five, ten years and how we can be of service to that industry.

00:08:05:19 – 00:08:27:06
James MacDonald
For a couple of aspects that I want to pull apart, in particular, working on what would have been a side hustle for them, I guess whilst working a full time job trying to get something from side hustle to full time job. Was that the sticking point there, the funding that came in that allowed you to go or allowed the other co-founders to go from side project to jumping all in?

00:08:27:15 – 00:08:28:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Pretty much.

00:08:28:06 – 00:08:45:07
James MacDonald
Yeah. Was there any advice you could give to other people that are currently operating in a side project type of way? Because that’s how a lot of startups, you know, start, right? Not unless you got a helper money behind you from somewhere else. A lot of people would have to work a full time job and have this side hustle play with that early morning, late at night.

00:08:45:09 – 00:08:52:22
James MacDonald
Yeah. Any advice for people to keep that going whilst in the side hustle phase or or then make that transition.

00:08:53:10 – 00:09:20:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
The momentum or the or the want because they’re very different things. You can you can build up momentum. You can make a personal brand that says, you know, X, Y and Z. But having the want to keep on going is really just knowing your own passion and and how you can be of service to that industry. So knowing that what you’re going to do is changing that industry and having that kind of that level of passion I think is insanely important for an early stage startup to succeed.

00:09:21:10 – 00:09:32:23
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
If you don’t have that, it becomes very difficult, I would say, to be to keep motivated, to keep on going back and back to something that isn’t necessarily earning you money or going anywhere right at that moment.

00:09:33:10 – 00:09:41:01
James MacDonald
Yeah, that’s a big point, actually. I feel like, you know, everyone has an idea to sell and it’s really motivated, you know, run through a brick wall for it, right? Yeah.

00:09:41:01 – 00:09:43:08
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Buy it for two years while you’re not being paid.

00:09:43:10 – 00:09:49:09
James MacDonald
Yeah. Do you think the key point of difference for you was the fact that it was so close to your heart with your son being in that industry?

00:09:49:13 – 00:10:10:02
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, I do think that that’s a clear differentiator and also that we just knew the industry so well and network was already in it. You know, my whole family was a part of the gaming industry. We were going to gaming cons and even through COVID. I mean, you can see just how wildly useful gaming was to people through COVID.

00:10:11:00 – 00:10:15:24
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Our industry actually it through the roof in COVID. Yeah, it was an interesting time.

00:10:16:08 – 00:10:36:03
James MacDonald
Yeah. On that point, I think I’m a bit keen to get your opinion that gaming I think can be viewed through two different lenses. Sometimes some people can be ah, as anti-social because people are just playing games online and they’re being outside and playing with friends, etc.. But on the flip side of that, it actually opens up communication channels for people that don’t otherwise find communication with other people very easily.

00:10:36:10 – 00:10:40:11
James MacDonald
Can I get your opinion sort of how that’s changed your view on the market?

00:10:40:15 – 00:11:02:23
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, correct. So it is it has been insanely useful for people who suffered with mental health or, you know, being too lonely and stuff like that through COVID. But I think it’s highlighted a whole range of other things. I think that there’s a study out there that shows that when a young girl games, she is three times more likely to go into a STEM career.

00:11:03:06 – 00:11:03:20
James MacDonald
Yeah, right.

00:11:04:04 – 00:11:34:14
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I think that when you can show stats like that, you begin to see just how useful gaming is to someone in their problem solving and their communication skills, all of these other ranges of skills that you wouldn’t necessarily get. So I would argue that, you know, in with everything in life, whether it be, you know, drugs, alcohol, whatever else you’re going to look at that that very small percentage, well, maybe not so small, but, you know, a smaller percentage that is having an issue with addiction and stuff like that.

00:11:35:08 – 00:11:59:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
The same goes for gaming. There is definitely a gaming addiction. You know, the World Health Organization has dictated so. So, you know, we go with that definition. But I think the number that it actually applies to is well below 1% of the gaming market. Yeah. So you’ve got to look at the good versus bad. You know, there’s always going to be somebody who’s negatively affected by something.

00:11:59:19 – 00:12:09:10
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
But I think you’ve also got to look at these major positive effects that it can have on a person’s, you know, confidence and and career paths going forward.

00:12:09:10 – 00:12:26:17
James MacDonald
Yeah, correct. I think, yeah. Two things that I think the career paths being one is it’s creating new careers, new opportunities for people outside of traditional, you know, traditional career paths. But the second part as well probably ties into, you know, what you’re doing in the educational space around mental health and, you know, things you can do to potentially alleviate that.

00:12:26:22 – 00:12:32:19
James MacDonald
You’re not going to fix all of the problems. But that educational piece can definitely be something that helps in this market, right?

00:12:32:20 – 00:12:35:09
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah.

00:12:35:09 – 00:12:55:10
James MacDonald
Nice. And so the story today then, you’ve obviously you’ve grown off and you’ve got some friends on board. You’ve gone through an accelerator program or international accelerator program, got some funding locally here in Australia. I imagine the industry continues to evolve. You continue to evolve. Is that bring us to where we’re at today, where you currently what’s next for Gwp?

00:12:55:11 – 00:13:20:16
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, pretty much so right at the moment. I mean if you look at our product, we have 90 plus videos showing people how to build their personal brand, how to do their social media, even how to do accounting for freelancers. So it’s down to that kind of level. And we have a product whereby a brand can come at least a gig on the platform much the same way as a job would be listed and influencers can apply to represent.

00:13:21:08 – 00:13:27:13
James MacDonald
So that’s like a product that they’d like to have in one of the gamers sell or promote.

00:13:27:15 – 00:13:49:01
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, So Casio watches came to us and said, We’ve got a Pac-Man watch that we’d like to sell. Yeah. And so they bought us the product, they gave us a budget. We went out and worked with a number of different influences and we actually sold out that product within a week in Australia. And so and that was, you know, the only marketing campaign that they actually put together for that particular watch.

00:13:49:01 – 00:14:14:07
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So we know that it was well, effective. And that’s one of the things we’re really trying to prove out is that the smarter that an influencer is, the higher the ROI on these marketing campaigns, because that’s what brings all of these brands back. Yeah, to gaming and why we wanted to add the professionalism and structure and everything else, because we could see, you know, there were literally hundreds of millions of dollars coming into gaming in this way.

00:14:14:10 – 00:14:21:22
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah. To work with influencers. And there was no one really sort of facilitating this, this exchange.

00:14:21:22 – 00:14:45:16
James MacDonald
Yeah, I think that the big point there as well as that is micro-influencers are like I think the Red Bulls in the world are going to, you know, sponsor maybe the top, you know, very small percentage. But those micro-influencers that’s the same gaming as everything else in the world right micro-influencers as big marketer of hundreds of thousands tens of millions of dollars being poured in those markets, that somebody with a couple of, you know, hundreds or thousands of followers can actually have a big influence.

00:14:45:16 – 00:15:10:17
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Absolutely. We work that’s actually where we play the hardest is the other 99%. Yeah, that top 1% of brands and top 1% of influencers. That’s, you know, kind of already organized by agencies and stuff like that. What we’re really interested in is the other 99% and creating that creator economy from the ground up so that everyone can be a part of this, this economy.

00:15:11:00 – 00:15:36:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It means that startups can engage us for as little as $5,000. Yeah. To get their name out globally with influences, you know, via gaming, it means that we can work with everyone on the way up to that top 1%. And, you know, not only does everyone get a go, so to speak, but it also means that, you know, brands can engage and get as much out of this as possible.

00:15:37:01 – 00:16:06:14
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And I think the really cool thing about this is that we can work with so many different and diverse types of brands. We can work with VPNs, we can work with fintech providers, we can work with fashion sneakers. We’ve worked with, as I say, Casio watches, Indomie, noodles, Logitech, just so many different brands across every ecosystem. And I guess, you know, the technology that we’re building out is really changing ad tech.

00:16:06:22 – 00:16:07:05
James MacDonald
Yeah.

00:16:07:12 – 00:16:27:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It’s really moving into that wider piece about where qualifying influences for the first time we’re actually showing that, you know, these people, the people on our platform are smarter. They know what they’re doing. They didn’t get there by luck and they know how to represent your brand and get you, you know, really great ROI on your campaigns.

00:16:28:00 – 00:16:49:22
James MacDonald
Yeah. So you’ve got the educational part for. Yeah, obviously influence himself said I do a better job of building their brands. And then on the flip side of that, you’ve also got that the ad or the marketing model which can help companies, you know, find the right influencers to support their brands. Yeah, Yeah. What I love about that also is, you know, brands and marketing dollars are no longer just spent for pure branding.

00:16:49:22 – 00:16:51:03
James MacDonald
You know, they want to look at their actual.

00:16:51:14 – 00:16:52:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Brand awareness anymore.

00:16:53:10 – 00:17:11:07
James MacDonald
They want to look at their attribution Models are not quite smart about where marketing dollars go now. And if you can actually tie that into, as you said, the influencers are can, you know, can actually get to, you know, show they rely on the span of, you know, how the how that plays out for the company. You know different change itself than the rest of them are.

00:17:11:07 – 00:17:33:08
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Hugely and I guess when we talk further about the technology and the more legacy piece that we’re building on the other side of this and media marketplace that we’re building, we’re talking about the alignment of brands. So we’re also talking about, you know, how do we utilize ARM to build an engine that will align both sides of that market.

00:17:33:20 – 00:17:56:09
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So we’re looking at things like like Red Bull, for instance, is an adventurous style archetype, you know, in branding. And so if we can match Red Bull or that particular archetype with an influencer from the same from the same place, from the same archetype, it means that the cut through in the ROI is going to be so much higher.

00:17:56:12 – 00:18:00:02
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, because that audience is already set up for that message.

00:18:00:02 – 00:18:18:11
James MacDonald
Yeah. Now I love that. I love that. And that’s where you get some spots around the marketing that really differentiates yourself from the rest of the market. That that path today obviously you’re at a point now where you’ve got a platform, you’ve got users, you’ve got brands. What’s next? What’s oh, whoa, hey, what’s next? And then Bay, what’s a greater vision?

00:18:18:11 – 00:18:19:15
James MacDonald
Like, what’s the end game?

00:18:19:24 – 00:18:44:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, look, I might start with the end result for us is it’s really about that that education structure and and professionalism for the gaming industry. That’s the first and foremost of what we’re trying to do. At the end of the day, we also want to make sure that brands can get the ROI and get the, you know, exactly what they came for out of the gaming industry in a wider, wider sense.

00:18:44:06 – 00:19:12:15
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
That also means that the technology that we’re building at the moment is going to be licensed or whitelisted all now to other influencer marketing or marketplaces all over the world. So we anticipate this to be not only for gaming, but to go out to the verticals like beauty, fitness, lifestyle, travel. Yeah. So that’s kind of the plan. Within the next five years, we’ve actually got a very well detailed plan that gets us that.

00:19:13:05 – 00:19:47:22
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So we’re pretty excited to implement that over the coming years. But at the moment we are actually crowdfunding, so we’ve previously raised 1.1 to 5 mil with great investors like Flying Fox as scale investors, as well as smaller angels as well across the ecosystem. But now we’re looking to crowdfund. We’ve engaged our community and really wanted to show product market fit through this and we’ve raised 393,000 to date just over the last two weeks with our community.

00:19:47:22 – 00:20:01:02
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah. So I think that that’s a great teller of what our community thinks of our product. And now we’re taking it out to investors and angels and other business people to participate over the next seven days in our crowdfund.

00:20:01:02 – 00:20:27:09
James MacDonald
Yeah. Wow. So we’ve got seven days from today, which is October 20th. So we’ve got October 27th closes. We’ll try and get this podcast app as a way to try to give our community an opportunity to actually have a look in this for those who want to potentially get involved. How I imagine there’s just a simple link they can click on for more information.

00:20:27:21 – 00:20:34:11
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And we’re an equities. So if you simply go to the equities equity crowdfunding platform, you’ll see us pretty quickly.

00:20:34:11 – 00:20:55:19
James MacDonald
The nice I think we had Mark from Declan recently, maybe also interactive. So we’ll share that link and astronauts as and on social media posts we do for the vision next five years for people that are willing to get involved or wanting to get involved a little bit more interested. What’s what’s his current race? What’s that allow JJ to JJ WP allowed them to do so we’ve.

00:20:55:19 – 00:21:14:21
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Gone with them in Max. We have two on any crowdfunding platform, so we’ve gone with them in max of 350 to 1.2. The sweet spot is really that 550 K Yeah, the we’re looking to get our next 12 months of runway out of this will allow us to build what we’re calling the MVP of the next phase of our business.

00:21:15:05 – 00:21:44:08
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It basically means that we can streamline, automate this means payments, it means a brand experience. It means that a brand can come build a profile, they can search for talent. It means that every time that they do a campaign, they can get post campaign reporting automatically sent to them. So there’s all of these things that we’re looking to really provide the brand side now so that we can start to build that out and make sure that everything we’re providing brands is what it should be because we’ve done the user side.

00:21:44:08 – 00:21:58:05
Jacqueline Garrett
We know that they need the education and the gigs and all of these features, but now we need to build out that brand side. The payments between them and really just automate everything that we’ve been doing manually for the past two years.

00:21:58:09 – 00:22:01:22
James MacDonald
Yeah. Now does that include building out the team in any capacity?

00:22:01:22 – 00:22:02:16
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Certainly does.

00:22:02:16 – 00:22:05:02
James MacDonald
What’s that team look like for the next couple of hires for you? Yeah.

00:22:05:02 – 00:22:24:00
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So the next two hires that we anticipate to make are going to be salespeople. Yeah. Because we know now without one salesperson what we can do. Now it’s time to really bring up that revenue side of things. And we plan to do that in the US. We’ve got a number of brands that we need to one bought from the US and we need someone on the ground there to do that.

00:22:24:00 – 00:22:40:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
We’ve actually just started advertising for that role. We’re going to be doing a little bit, I would say, you know, just in these early stages there’s going to be some outsourcing in terms of, you know, software developers and stuff like that. It’s not really the way that we wanted to build our team. We wanted to build it out.

00:22:40:19 – 00:22:56:23
Jacqueline Garrett
You know, with solid, full time members and really grow. But with the market the way that it is, we’ve decided that we need to do it this way now and move really quickly. So that’s kind of where we’re at now. We’re going to be outsourcing our tech team and hiring some salespeople.

00:22:56:24 – 00:23:16:20
James MacDonald
With you, CTO internally, managing that right and managing the build. Yeah, not so you still got that internal capability as well. Beautiful. I imagine sales people in the US and the gaming world, that might be an exciting hire for you from our perspective, that’s a pretty easy sell, right? A Come join a company that’s working both brand name fonts inside in the gaming community.

00:23:17:04 – 00:23:19:17
James MacDonald
Surely that’s going to be a pretty popular role.

00:23:19:17 – 00:23:40:02
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It is. But I tell you what, when you tell people, you know, what the pay might be that you’re you know, we’re looking to use some equity or, you know, commissions and things like that, It can it can change things a little bit, especially when there’s so much money in startups in the US. Yeah. So we’re really relying on our network at the moment to help us with referrals.

00:23:40:02 – 00:24:00:16
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And you know, obviously we need someone who already has a little black book of brands of connections, so we’re really trying to whittle it down. I think we opened it up and I think in the first day we had 92 applicants and so it’s flowing through really nicely at the moment. I think the hard part is going to be more about just finding the right person from it, of course.

00:24:00:17 – 00:24:18:23
James MacDonald
Nice. You mentioned something that the US and Australia. I think it’s an interesting space for anyone in Newcastle, but anyone in Australia in general finding money is more difficult in general even over the past the past six months, even worse. But how have you found that experience being a startup, found a base here in Australia that’s potentially been based in the US?

00:24:19:10 – 00:24:39:09
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Oh look, I have colleagues and peers in the US who are, you know, starting their own gaming startups and they can pull, you know, two and three times our valuation over there and pull together a $2 million seed round very, very quickly and easily. I’m yet to see a friend over there who hasn’t been able to do it, in fact.

00:24:40:04 – 00:24:58:13
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I think that being in a more regional area like Australia for gaming in particular has been a really interesting road. In the beginning we found that we had to educate investors and even tell them what it meant to be a part of the gaming or e-sports worlds. Yeah, so we were doing more education than we were asking for it.

00:24:58:17 – 00:25:27:21
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, we were just exceptionally lucky that we, that we managed to get to know Matt Allen. Yeah, he’s in the space interactive ventures and he introduced us to Kylie Fraser from to a flying fox, then Eleanor and Chelsea at Scale. Both of those groups support more heavily on female founders. Yeah, and you know, being run by women, of course they could see that we are in a really weird position.

00:25:27:21 – 00:25:48:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
We’re in a heavily male dominated field, female founder. You know, it was always going to be a bit of a long, hard road. Yeah. So we can’t wait to get past this next point because this next volume inflection point for us is going to mean that we have a product that is completely different from anything in the market.

00:25:48:06 – 00:26:07:13
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
It is completely undeniable at that point. You know, if we if we build exactly what we say we’re going to build in the next 12 months, it will just surpass anything on the market. So I think that when we reach that kind of a point, there’s no denying it. That’s when we can go to investors in the US and be, you know, I mean we’ve always been fairly confident.

00:26:07:16 – 00:26:19:03
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, but now it’s like here it is, like this is literally it’s done. We’re not talking about it anymore. We’re changing the game. Yeah, we expect the investment to change dramatically from their VFL.

00:26:19:11 – 00:26:24:21
James MacDonald
Let’s take on that US point for one more bet. Do you think at some point in time that you’re going to have to move to the US?

00:26:24:21 – 00:26:42:00
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
There will definitely be a part of our company that has to be in the US. There’s no denying that whether I’m in the US is is a totally different but totally different question. However, I anticipate that there will be a point where I need to be there on the ground a lot more.

00:26:42:00 – 00:26:51:21
James MacDonald
Yeah, yeah. On the flip side of that, there’s some positives being in Newcastle or in Australia. What’s kept you local in Newcastle and growing the business here in Australia?

00:26:52:00 – 00:27:10:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
I love the lifestyle in UAE. I like being able to go to the beach, you know, if it’s in the middle of the Christmas school holidays, you know, my my husband might drive us up to Port Stephens, so I’ll be working in the car for that and you know, 45 minute drive. Yeah. And get out and, you know, go do stuff with the family and then work on the way home.

00:27:10:20 – 00:27:31:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I love the lifestyle that it allows us. And more and more. So you’re seeing the the ecosystem change in terms of talent and that talent grow and stay more local. You know, I think that five, ten years ago was very different story. And now with more and more exciting start ups staying in Newcastle, you’re starting to see the talent stay here a bit better as well.

00:27:31:19 – 00:27:44:01
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I think that that’s really exciting. I can’t wait to see how we can grow that here as well. But I mean primarily my team works remotely, so I work with, you know, most of my team are in Sydney, but I’m here in Newcastle. Yeah.

00:27:45:14 – 00:28:04:16
James MacDonald
Yeah. Ability to speak to other founders and, you know, bounce off them. I feel as grown in Newcastle, you know, I’ve got a few people that have had some successes, even more so in Sydney. Right? You can bounce off. Other people have been there, done that. I think once you get to that next point and you are able to then share that knowledge, you know, in fun to speculate, okay, community here in Newcastle in Australia as a whole.

00:28:04:22 – 00:28:32:04
James MacDonald
Yeah. And the other point you mentioned is before female founder are female founders are obviously a very small group, successful female founders are just female founders in general, and there’s obvious difficulties out there and challenges which make or have made your experience, I assume, much harder. Can you give some insights into, I guess, your journey today as a female founder and then also potentially some advice that you might be able to share with others?

00:28:32:04 – 00:28:53:21
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, I mean, I’ve definitely had some interactions that were, you know, kill your toes and really make you cringe. For anyone who supports female founders, you would really cringe at some of the things that we’ve seen. I mean, I’ve been called just a mum with an idea. I’ve called, you know, I’ve been called all sorts of things. I’ve been told to go and find a male co-founder.

00:28:54:00 – 00:29:28:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, I’ve, yeah, it’s not been easy and it certainly isn’t easy when you’re fundraising. Yeah. One of the reasons why most of our investors are female or female supporting is, you know, it’s it’s very difficult in any country, whether whether you’re here or the US to raise funds as a as a woman. So I think that just before COVID the percentage of global VC money that went to women was at 2.9% and this year it’s gone down to 0.7%.

00:29:28:16 – 00:29:30:22
James MacDonald
I was about to ask is do you think it’s getting better?

00:29:30:23 – 00:29:59:00
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
No, it is not very, unfortunately. And there are still studies out there that show that women led startups are performing better in terms of revenue. So I don’t understand why the disparity, but I think that the best advice I can give to anyone as as as another woman would be to just be insanely confident, even if you’re you’re not I, you know, fake it till you make it, so to speak.

00:29:59:00 – 00:30:30:05
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
I really hated that. And I actually had a few investors kind of say that to me. You need to fake it to make it. And I was like, No, I’m conservative, I’m transparent. I’m always going to speak to you in real terms instead of blowing things up like a show pony. You know what I mean? Yeah. When it turns out that I actually needed a little bit of that, I needed a little bit of that storytelling, a little bit more of that, you know, just blind confidence in yourself that sometimes, you know, they expect to see from men.

00:30:30:05 – 00:30:56:01
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So I think that, you know, for a certain part of this is investors looking at a founder and expecting to see certain traits because that’s what they’ve seen of male founders when they’ve been successful, they’ve been overly confident, they’ve been this that I think now that we need to redefine what that successful founder looks like. Yeah, because it doesn’t necessarily look like that.

00:30:56:01 – 00:30:56:09
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So.

00:30:56:09 – 00:31:10:07
James MacDonald
PONY Yeah, Yeah, that’s a that’s a sad situation and especially sad that, you know, it’s not changing to the positive, you know, as quickly as any of us would have hoped. Have you found that there is a strong support network for female founders in Australia?

00:31:10:09 – 00:31:33:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah, absolutely. There’s there are men out there championing female founders, which is fantastic to say. There are women out there, you know, starting to put together funds, which is also great to see. And there are there are few existing as well. There are also accelerator programs like SBA Global, which is the springboard network for female founders to go to the US.

00:31:33:20 – 00:32:00:14
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So we’ve also done that program too. I think that’s in these early stages while we’re still really trying to move the needle on funding going to women led founders, women led startups, we really need to stick together. I think that we we need to lean into being female founders, find the other people around us and really utilize each other’s networks and and, you know, make it happen together.

00:32:00:14 – 00:32:04:17
Jacqueline Garrett
Because I feel like that’s the only way it’s going to move at this point. Yeah.

00:32:05:02 – 00:32:12:23
James MacDonald
It would be nice to see, you know, over the next, you know, short turnaround later that that trend line started obviously change.

00:32:13:05 – 00:32:22:04
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And I think that the more I think it’s actually been proven don’t hold me to this but I’m fairly certain that the more you invest in women, the more they turn around and invest in more women.

00:32:23:13 – 00:32:23:23
James MacDonald
I was like.

00:32:24:08 – 00:32:32:10
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
I can’t wait to be on the other side. And actually, you know, helping and mentoring and funding other women, I, I so badly want to get to that place.

00:32:32:10 – 00:32:42:09
James MacDonald
Yeah, get to the place. I obviously that key focus for you obviously these guys who’ve been are super focused on your you’re building your company first and then the opportunity to then give back to that community.

00:32:42:09 – 00:32:43:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yeah absolutely Yeah.

00:32:43:20 – 00:33:04:10
James MacDonald
Beautiful taking our idea from 0 to 1 super difficult I feel like lots of people have ideas, ideas worth nothing executions, everything called these lectures for anyone that’s got an idea might be working a full time job somewhere else. But passion area Samson Melody passion area and an idea around that passion area. Is there any advice that you would give that person?

00:33:04:10 – 00:33:16:14
James MacDonald
Because I feel like there’s a lot of people out there in this day and age that are working in a95 job and reasonably happy but have a passion area and have an idea around that. Can you give anyone some advice to, you know, to bring that to life.

00:33:17:11 – 00:33:37:17
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
And hate really quickly? Yeah, constantly coming up with new and different and more effective ways of, you know, how can I package this up and sell it? Basically, yeah. You know, will 100 people pay for it, make it happen, and then get into it, You know what I mean? So you’ve got to find out whether it’s useful, if it’s not been done before, what’s the differentiator?

00:33:37:21 – 00:33:45:11
Jacqueline Garrett
There are so many little things that need to be sorted out really, really quickly. And then you’ve got to figure out if 100,000 a million people would pay for it.

00:33:45:13 – 00:33:53:19
James MacDonald
Yeah, and you don’t have to build that from scratch. You don’t get a software engineer to build it for the lab. You can get a no code solution or you can just deal with an actual ideation. Actually, you.

00:33:53:19 – 00:34:07:05
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Can start with surveying your, you know, your community, then you can build a part of it and then, you know, ask them what they think. And, you know, you can do all of these other things to figure out whether you’re on the right track before you jump in to fate. No pay.

00:34:07:19 – 00:34:08:03
James MacDonald
Yeah.

00:34:08:11 – 00:34:11:17
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
You know, so now I think that that’s the start.

00:34:11:20 – 00:34:22:19
James MacDonald
Yeah. Beautiful from that starting point in the next like your managing a family your managing a business, fully remote business, you know, managing fundraising. There’s a lot to that. How do you manage your day?

00:34:23:23 – 00:34:36:04
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Well, I’m not the average. I’ll give you that. Being in the gaming world, it can quite often mean a 3 a.m. meeting. Yeah. So I am very, very flexible. I’m very adaptable. My day changes every hour.

00:34:36:08 – 00:34:36:16
James MacDonald
Yeah.

00:34:37:10 – 00:34:40:00
Jacqueline Garrett
I’m a little bit all over the place, to be honest.

00:34:40:00 – 00:34:41:23
James MacDonald
To use a calendar for meetings.

00:34:41:23 – 00:35:02:20
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yes. So I use calendar for all of my meetings. Obviously. But it just means that, you know, while I’m doing outreach on LinkedIn or whatever, it means that, you know, I can go from going to sleep at 8 p.m. like I would want to. Yeah. And to you know, I’ve got to go to bed at 6 p.m. so that I can get up and do a call at 1:00 or you know what I mean.

00:35:02:20 – 00:35:08:04
Jacqueline Garrett
So it really does change fairly, you know, consistently throughout the days.

00:35:08:12 – 00:35:18:06
James MacDonald
Yeah, right. It’s a calendar, obviously one. So and the idea you just get is that a project management tool or is that you know, areas of the job. What what any other software that you use.

00:35:18:15 – 00:35:41:03
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
We use version for everything nation in that in our business is basically our Wikipedia that’s where we everything for the company all of our succession planning, all of our sales and everything like that and then that ties into HubSpot. So for, you know, outreach and stuff like that. So I would say that they’re the two biggest tools that we’re using internally at the moment.

00:35:41:03 – 00:35:43:23
James MacDonald
And subsequent nation that’s not stopped except.

00:35:44:01 – 00:35:46:02
Jacqueline Garrett
As just simple. Yeah.

00:35:46:08 – 00:36:11:15
James MacDonald
And I feel like it does that really well. They, they, they, they have a spot for founders and startups with little or no budget with the free options right up to enterprise level solutions. So it’s beautiful outside of that. Like you’ve obviously gone through a journey I feel like once you get there as well, there’s a lot of education you’ll be able provide others, but it’s like for right now it’s a is our A book or podcasts or anyone that you follow that you’d really, hey, this person was a game changer.

00:36:11:15 – 00:36:12:24
James MacDonald
This book was a game changer for me.

00:36:12:24 – 00:36:46:19
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Hmm. There’s there’s one podcast that I do listen to a little bit. It’s the startup playbook. Yeah, local ecosystem startup stuff. Then Atomic Habits would be the books that I would suggest to check out. Yeah, I’m really again, I’m not a linear pathway on on this either, but I like to, you know, if there’s a particular startup like cable file, like Canva, you know, some of those really cool stories that you just can’t get enough of, they’re the ones like, you know, if they’re on whatever podcast, I’ll go and listen to that.

00:36:46:19 – 00:36:51:05
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
So yeah, yeah, I tend to follow startups, not podcasts. Yeah.

00:36:51:15 – 00:37:05:10
James MacDonald
Yeah, I follow individuals and where they pop up. And what you’ll find is that they go in there for a fundraising round, they’ll pop up and everyone’s podcast or they got a book coming out or something like that. That’s really good. We try not to take up too much time. Is there any like parting advice you’d like to provide anyone.

00:37:07:04 – 00:37:27:14
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Really, again, just to go back to that female found a piece that, you know, if we can all bend together and I don’t mind when women reach out to me, I don’t mind when anyone reaches out to me, but I certainly don’t mind if if a female founder reaches out to me for advice or or help or an introduction or whatever, I’m always, you know, there to be a part of it.

00:37:27:14 – 00:37:29:01
James MacDonald
What’s the easiest way to reach out to you.

00:37:29:07 – 00:37:32:18
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
On LinkedIn is usually pretty quick and easy. On the Jaclyn Garrett.

00:37:32:18 – 00:37:34:12
James MacDonald
Yeah, and we’ll like that unfortunate.

00:37:34:12 – 00:37:36:06
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Channel name instead of Jacks.

00:37:36:06 – 00:37:58:05
James MacDonald
Yeah, no, I went through that only the other day. I will link that up in the show notes, make it nice and easy for those as well. So equities right now I will open for another seven days. We’ll get that out ASAP. So if people want to get involved the game or questions. I know that I’ve been through the site myself and there is a lot of information there for any potential investors.

00:37:58:05 – 00:37:59:16
James MacDonald
But if there’s any other questions come to you.

00:37:59:19 – 00:38:14:24
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Yes, absolutely. We’ve got a 40 offer document on the platform that you can download. We also have a Q&A video that you can check out as well. So lots of information, but otherwise, please feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn or any of the social media platforms.

00:38:15:06 – 00:38:18:18
James MacDonald
For Thank you for coming on and sharing your story and your Take People podcast.

00:38:18:18 – 00:38:19:08
Jacqueline Garrett – GGWP Academy
Thanks, James.

00:38:19:08 – 00:38:21:01
James MacDonald
Just.

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