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58 Small Business Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals

At Hello Alice, we believe every weekend should be spent shopping with small businesses. That said, there’s no better time to save than with these amazing small business Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. Save big and support burgeoning entrepreneurs with this roundup of promotions from Hello Alice small business owners. Whether you are shopping for skincare, clothing, or sustainable goods these small businesses have unique offerings to gift every person on your holiday shopping list. Browse By Category: ClothingAccessoriesBeauty & GroomingWellnessProductivityHomeFoodKidsGifts Clothing Wearwell Sustainable clothing curated monthly for you. Get 20% off all gift cards of $100 or more with code GIVEWEARWELL. Get 20% off items in their marketplace with free shipping on orders with three or more items with no code needed. Or, enjoy three months of membership free with code 3MONTHSOFCHEER. Save from 11/29-12/4.  Katlinmartelle Elevation Couture Custom apparel made to your measurements. Save 50% if you book on 11/26.  WUNZ Power jumpsuits that give back to The Los Angeles Mission. Save 15% through 12/24 with code FESTIVE15. Jae Martin Hoodies, tees, and leggings featuring unique graffiti-based designs. Save 25% on apparel and art through 12/20 with no code necessary.  AttirebyAA Clothing and accessories that celebrate Black excellence. Enjoy 35% off sitewide from 11/25-11/29. Use code 35OFF. Plus, get free shipping on orders of $35 or more.  Classy Chick Boutique Stylish apparel in bold prints and colors. Get 25-40% from 11/26-11/29. No code necessary.  Woke Creations Athleisure and fashion accessories designed to wake up your wardrobe. Gift with purchase on orders of $50 or more with code WOKEHOLIDAY4U while supplies last through 12/31.  Divine7Boutique Cute crop hoodies and matching sets. Save 20% on all apparel on 11/26 using code HOWDIVINE.  PZTV Art Co.  Tees and sweatshirts with positive messages. Save 15% sitewide with code GIFT15 from 11/26-11/30. Accessories Unoeth Handmade leather handbags, totes, duffles, and accessories. Save 30% sitewide from 11/26-11/29 with code BIGGESTSALE30. beYOUteous Eye-catching and handcrafted beaded jewelry. Save 40% on 11/26 with code BLACKFRIDAY2021. Or, save 20% on 11/29 with code CYBERMONDAY2021.  Brown Haze Jewelry Sustainable jewelry from a company that employs young adults aging out of the foster care system. Save 25% through 12/31 with code Brownish25.  Sarep + Rose Stylish bags, accessories, and footwear handmade in fair trade factories. Save 20% sitewide from 11/26-12/3. Nichet Supply Bold print sneakers and more. Save 20% sitewide through 1/6 using code BFCM20.  Beauty & Grooming Element Mom A K-Beauty skincare brand designed specifically for maternal care. Save 50% sitewide on 11/26 with code BLACKFRIDAY or 40% from 11/27-11/29 with code CYBERMONDAY.  Renew You Body Butters Organic and ethically sourced skincare. Save 50% on a mini vegan facial set from 11/26-11/30. No code needed.  Coco Leveaux A smoothing bikini cream formulated by two dermatologists. Save 20% with code Black21.  Every Girl’s Dream by Royshun   High-quality hair extensions and wigs. Save 20% sitewide from 11/26-11/27 and get free shipping on orders of $200 or more. Unspoken Beauty Beauty products, supplies, and lifestyle goods. Save 30% sitewide through 1/1.  NoirGirlbyJWhit Beauty products for lashes and lips. Save 37% sitewide on 11/26 with no code needed.  Angel’s Essence Natural skincare designed for sensitive skin. Save 20-35% off sitewide on 11/26.  Esteem Royale Cosmetics Non-toxic skincare with a high concentration of clean active ingredients. Save up to 50% on all skincare products from 11/24-11/29 plus get a free gift with purchase. Navaeh Naturals Natural shampoos, conditioners, growth oils, and curl care. Save 15% on all haircare products on 11/26.  SANA Skin & Wellness Plant-derived skincare formulated to address a variety of skin concerns. Save 50% on 11/29. Made Stronger Essentials Clean and cruelty-free body scrubs, butters, and oils. Save 30% from 11/26-11/29 using code GiveThanks.  Recover Restore Gro Natural products that support scalp health and hair growth. Sitewide discounts from 11/25-11/27.  YANY Beauty Sustainable luxury cosmetics. Save up to 50% on all cosmetics and skincare on 11/26. Or, save 30% on 11/29 with a free mini skincare set for purchases of $150 or more. No code necessary.  Wellness Savhera Organic essential oils and diffusers that support the employment of trafficking survivors. Save 30% sitewide.  JECA Artisanal Nutrition Bars Vegan-friendly energy bars that are free of sugar, oils, gluten, and soy. Save 20% and get free shipping on all orders from 11/26-11/28 with code jbf2021.  Robin Eitland Success Coaching Life and business coaching. Save 30% through 12/31 using code Holiday.  LouLou Piscatore Acupuncturist-approved essential oil blends. Save 20% on all essential oils through 12/31 using code HOLIDAY20. Start Within Coaching Digital journals, guided meditations, and other self-care tools. Save 25% using code BFCM21 through 11/29.  Gold Coast Doulas An online program to give expecting mothers confidence in their transition to motherhood. Save $100 from 11/24-11/30.  Melanin Moves Project A non-profit that champions social justice through wellness. Save 50% on their 200 hour on-demand yoga training from 11/15-11/29. The first ten people to sign up get a free Manduka Yoga Mat. Or, save 30% on yoga workbooks on 11/29 with no code needed.  Elitone A device that strengthens pelvic floor muscles for incontinence. Save $50 through 11/29 using code BlackFriYay.  The Inspired Life Empowering self-care journals, workbooks, and crystal accessories. Save 30% on all purchases of $50 or more through 11/29 with code RESILIENCE.  Productivity Bold Babes Co A digital planner to set and meet your goals for the new year. Save $20 through 11/30. No code necessary.  The Pay We Deserve One-on-one salary negotiation coaching with an expert. Receive a bonus session free when you sign up for the Four Steps Forward package using code HELLOALICE through 11/26.  Home Refill Goodness Sustainable home and cleaning supplies curated to eliminate plastic packaging. Save 15% on 11/29 with code GIVING.  Ettitude Sustainable bedding and bath linens made from bamboo. Save 20% sitewide from 11/23-11/29 using code FEELGOOD. Food SIMPLi Sustainable ingredients that are ethically sourced and support the farming communities they come from. Save 20% on their Journey Around the World ingredients basket.   Call Me Caramel Intriguing cheese caramels for the ultimate in salty-sweet snacking. Save 15% on orders over $100 from 11/26-11/29 using code SWEETSAVORY. Kikos Coffee & Tea Certified organic teas and fair-trade coffee. Save 30% on any three loose-leaf teas or 25% off their Colombian coffees.  Jack & Friends Jerky Plant-based jerky that’s packed with protein. Save 20% on all orders from 11/22-11/29 with code BLACKFRIDAY2021.  New Line Blending & Roastery Artisanal loose leaf tea and craft-roasted coffee. Save 30% sitewide with code HOTHOLIDAY30. Kids Lauren Simone Publishing House Children’s books that champion diversity, inclusion, and nontraditional authors. Save 30% from 11/21-11/27 with code SHOPBLACKCT.  Reading Revolutionaries Subscription gift boxes for young readers ranging from picture books to YA. Save 35% when you subscribe and 25% off every quarter for 2022 when you sign up from 11/25-11/26. The Original My Buddy Towel Adorable onesie towel suits made with 100% cotton. Save $5 on each one from 11/26-11/29 and get free shipping.  Beautiful Curly Me Natural haircare for girls and curly-haired dolls to match. Save 20% on all orders through 12/1 using code HELLOALICE. Or, get 50% off all bundles with no code needed. Gifts Olive and Poppy Home goods and accessories from California’s wine country. Save 25% off sitewide from 11/22-11/29 with code SHOPSMALL.  Abide Candle Co. Natural candles in festive seasonal scents. Save 35% sitewide on 11/19 using code light35 or 45% on 11/26 using code light45.  ImSafeNow Wearable safety buttons that offer peace of mind and support. Buy three and get one free for a limited time.  Trelawear Jewelry that doubles as a personal emergency response system and monitors for falls. Get two free months of monitoring service with any device purchase through 11/30. Bocu Custom gift boxes with quality goods and personalized wrapping. Save 20% from 11/26-11/29. No code necessary. Illuminate B. Candles Eco-friendly candles, room sprays, and wax melts. Save 45% on most products from 11/25-11/28 with code BFRIDAY21. Effie’s Paper Stylish stationary and other office goods with flair. Save 25% sitewide from 11/26-11/29. No code necessary.  Heavenscent by Aaryn Eco-friendly candles and body cream in decadent scents. Save 50% sitewide on 11/25, 11/26, and 11/29 with no code required.  Maraval Made Handmade face masks for you and your loved ones. Get five for $9.99 while supplies last. No code needed.  Interested in joining the community of Hello Alice owners? Sign up for a free membership here for tools to grow your small business.
Nov 23, 2021 • 5 min read
Women Entrepreneur Q&A

4 Pieces of Advice for Women Starting Businesses

Did you know that women are the fastest growing entrepreneurial demographic in the United States? (1) To celebrate this quickly growing sector of small business owners Hello Alice Co-Founder Elizabeth Gore spoke with Natalie Madeira Cofield. Natalie is not only an entrepreneur herself with almost fifteen years of experience but also the assistant administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership. Together they discussed their experience and advice for women starting businesses. Read our key takeaways here and view the full Q&A recording below for our insights. About the Office of Women’s Business Ownership All entrepreneurs face many challenges as they build their businesses. However, women entrepreneurs were subject to unique legislative obstacles not that long ago. Natalie explained that her office was codified during the Women’s Business Ownership Act of 1988.  “At that time, part of the legislation was about ensuring that women didn’t have to have a male co-signer for loans,” she explained. Natalie’s office has worked hard to support women-owned businesses since then. Notably, she’s been in charge of an expansion of the Women’s Business Center network that has put $70 million to work in federal grants to women-led firms.  Tips for Women Starting Businesses Here are our biggest takeaways from Natalie’s conversation with Elizabeth on entrepreneurship: 1. Take advantage of grants and opportunities for small businesses.  In truth, Hello Alice’s origins are itself a testament to the power of grants.  “Don’t do this,” Elizabeth warned, “but we (she and co-founder Carolyn Rodz) basically maxed out our credit cards to start Hello Alice and pursue our dream. Then we heard about the SBA (Small Business Administration). We applied for an SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) grant and got $50,000. It was life-changing for us. It allowed us to move forward and build the technology in a time when, frankly, no one really believed in our idea or that small business owners were worth investing in.” [Hello Alice Guide: Learn About SBIR/STTR Awards]  There are so many different grants available, including grants for women-owned businesses, specifically. Entrepreneurs can easily apply for small business owner grants with a free account on Hello Alice. Additionally, you can check the SBA website for more grant opportunities or visit one of their Women’s Business Centers nationwide for guidance and support.   2. Prepare for pitfalls and persist with resilience. Hearing “no” is an inevitable part of entrepreneurship. As much as you can, embrace it as a learning opportunity.  “Natalie and I, both as entrepreneurs — especially women entrepreneurs — in our first round of funding got told no 200 times,” Elizabeth said. “I had a spreadsheet of every single one and it was so demoralizing. But then, you learn from the no’s. You get back on the horse. You keep applying.” As your business grows, she encouraged, you’ll hear less no’s. Until then? Keep applying and continuing building experience.  “If you want to build a recession-proof business, you’ve got to be resilient,” Natalie affirmed.  Additionally, consider financial resiliency by securing funding and lines of credit for emergencies before they happen. “Even if you don’t need something right now,” Elizabeth advised, “walk into that bank and get to know your banker and really try and plan out how to diversify your cash flow.” That way you’ll be ready when the unexpected happens.  3. Adapt with the times and your customer’s needs.  According to one report Natalie shared, 78% of women businesses had to pivot during the pandemic. (2) Both she and Elizabeth supported thinking customer-first and adapting to their changing needs. Natalie recommends being “prepared to make the essential changes to your business model that are going to meet your customers exactly where they are.” For instance, consider what lifestyle challenges you can solve for them at any given time. Furthermore, Natalie recommends embracing technology in your small business. “I think one of the things that the pandemic demonstrated to all of us was that people have to have an opportunity to engage with you in a digital way, whether that be purchasing your services or receiving communication from you,” she said. Ultimately, these digital touchpoints provide greater accessibility.  4. There is no better time to start and promote your small business.  “For all of us women, we tend to really think things through,” said Elizabeth. But while it’s important to plan, it’s also important to make it happen. Her advice? “I would say, go for it. Start that business. There couldn’t be a better time to start a business. I feel strongly about that,” she encouraged.  Now more than ever, administrations such as Natalie’s are turning their attention to support small businesses. Q&A Recording For more insights, you can view the full Q&A recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVgl2nyn98E More Resources for Women Starting Businesses Subscribe to our weekly newsletter for more small business advice and to be the first to know about future events with industry experts to ask your own questions live.  You can also check out these recommended resources from Elizabeth and Natalie: The Small Business Growth Fund The Hello Alice Funding Center The Small Business Grants Forum on Hello Alice The Office of Women's Business Ownership The Official Website of the U.S. Small Business Administration 
Nov 16, 2021 • 3 min read

You’re Invited to the TikTok #SmallBizBlockParty!

Is your business on TikTok yet? If not, it's time to think about getting started. Since its dance trend beginnings, TikTok has evolved into a uniquely powerful new growth channel for small businesses — a platform that enables you to tell your story, connect with audiences, and drive results in a new, dynamic way. We've teamed up with TikTok For Business to share access to a FREE virtual workshops as part of the TikTok #SmallBizBlockParty national tour. You're invited!  Through each workshop, you'll learn how to tap into TikTok's massive popularity and create scroll-stopping content to grow your business. Each hour-long virtual event will teach you: What makes TikTok different and uniquely powerful for small businessesHow you can create content your audience will love, even without big budgets or teamsWhy you should get started on TikTok today! You'll hear this from some of our top small business leaders across the company, plus some small business owners who have seen for themselves the difference TikTok can make. Don't miss out on this unique opportunity! RSVP for one of the regional or national events below: California - October 19, 1-2 p.m. ET Northeast - October 21, 1-2 p.m. ETNationwide - November 18, 1-2 p.m. ET
Oct 12, 2021 • < 1 min read

Town Hall: The State of the LGBTQ+ Economy

There was an interesting finding in a recent survey conducted by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC). Although roughly one-third of LGBTQ+ small business owners lost 50% of their business due to COVID-19, nearly 80% expect to make a full recovery. What explains this remarkable resurgence? “As LGBTQ people overall, we always learned to be resilient — even in our personal lives, dealing with family or coworkers or people in general who are not accepting,” said Donnya "Zi" Piggott, the co-founder and CEO of the LGBTQ+ travel platform Pink Coconuts. “Because of that, it has taught us to use these same tools to persevere.” In conversation with Hello Alice's Sophia Zisook, NGLCC Senior Vice President Sabrina Kent, and StartOut Director of Programs and Partnerships Sarah Burgaud, Piggott discussed the current situation of the country's roughly 1.4 million LGBTQ+ small business owners in a virtual town hall. The event builds on a recent impact report analyzing the LGBTQ+ small business community. According to Hello Alice data, the number one challenge these owners face is access to capital; they also operate in the industries most affected by pandemic health restrictions, making it difficult to operate their businesses. Even so, we measured an incredible emphasis on community. LGBTQ+ owners create jobs for their community, donate to LGBTQ+ nonprofits, and foster safe spaces for all. In an hour-long conversation, the panelists discussed the most pressing concerns of LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs and shared resources to help this community as we emerge from the pandemic. You can watch the full panel embedded below and read key take takeaways and action items to carry us forward. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XHVygimkB-w LGBTQ+ Virtual Town Hall | June 23, 2021 How to Be a More Inclusive Business Owner First, all business owners should ensure their employees feel comfortable at work. That means using correct pronouns, not enforcing gendered dress codes, and hiring a diverse staff. This advice applies to LGBTQ+ owners, too. “We have a lot of work to do within our own LGBT community when it comes to gender inclusion,” said Kent of the NGLCC. “Just because we're L or G or B doesn't mean that we’re well-versed on these things. We have even more work to do when it comes to breaking down silos within our community.” On the HR front, business owners should evaluate their benefits and HR policies. Many insurance plans do not cover trans healthcare, and it's common for employee handbooks to not accommodate the needs of queer families. "Making a statement to include those is a really big deal," said Burgaud of StartOut. Voice Your Support for the Equality Act For both members of the community and allies, you can urge your senator to pass the Equality Act. This piece of legislation adds sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes under the 1964 Civil Rights Act alongside race, color, religion, and national origin. “We need the Equality Act because, in over half of the states in the country, you can be denied access to credit or a business loan just because of the fact that you’re LGBT,” said Kent of the NGLCC. The act passed the House of Representatives in February, but the bill has recently stalled in the Senate. Now is the time to contact your elected officials and urge them to negotiate a deal to protect all Americans! Where LGBTQ+ Owners Can Look for Funding The number one challenge LGBTQ+ owners face is finding the capital to start and grow their businesses. Measures like the Equality Act will hopefully make it easier for queer entrepreneurs to get traditional financing, but the panelists pointed to several funds and angel investors interested in funding New Majority businesses. Here are some of the sources mentioned during the town hall: GaingelsBackstage CapitalAll RaiseVenture ForwardPride Fund 1StartOut Our Small Business Funding Center also curates grants and other opportunities from across the internet in one convenient location. Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates! Why LGBTQ+ Entrepreneurs Should Get Certified Finally, LGBTQ+ owners can unlock new opportunities by getting certified through our partners at the NGLCC. Becoming a certified LGBT-owned enterprise provides contracting opportunities and a network of hundreds of fellow entrepreneurs. Crucially, your LGBTE certification challenges stereotypes of who small business owners are and what they can look like "We can do a better job of being visible because visibility is power," said Kent. For more data and stories from the LGBTQ+ business community, download the full 2021 LGBTQ+ Hello Alice Impact Report.
Jun 29, 2021 • 3 min read

‘COVID Is an Opportunity Built on the Backdrop of a Disaster’

In a recent event titled “The Black-Owned Economy: A Virtual Town Hall,” NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson made a case for optimism after the events of the last year. As he put it, “COVID is an opportunity built on the backdrop of a disaster.” In conversation with Earth's Nectar Co-Founder Tamika Fletcher, Bivium Capital CEO Lawrence Bancroft, and Hello Alice Vice President of Product Kelsey Ruger, Johnson discussed the status of the more than 2.6 million Black-owned businesses in the United States. The good news is that while the pandemic has forced many businesses to adapt, sometimes these changes have helped them grow their businesses. Owners won’t lose these gains after the pandemic, either. “We figured out what we can live without. We figured out how to take technology and replace some of the positions that we had that were costing us a lot more,” explained Fletcher, co-owner of a Houston-based salon and beauty brand. The last year highlighted the value of our local communities. Fletcher said she’s relied on her local SBA office and SCORE mentors to guide her decisions. She’s also turned to accelerators like The Workshop at Macy’s and Target’s Rising Stars. “I learned really how to run a business and not just have an expensive hobby,” she said of these programs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZcC-uzszHk The Black-Owned Economy: A Virtual Town Hall | Recorded April 2, 2021 At the same time, panelists acknowledged how hard it is to keep up with resources available to small business owners, particularly when it comes to business grants. “I’m shocked at how much grant money is available out there that goes unclaimed, just because people don't know about it,” Ruger said. “[Hello Alice] is actually working on a grants hub that gets all of those things together in one compiled location so that even outside of our own grants, people can see what else is available for them to help their business.” Beyond the soon-to-be-launched Hello Alice grants hub, panelists said the Black community has much to look forward to: more financial support for HBCUs, a Civilian Climate Corps to help young people gain marketable skills, and tangible progress in the diversity of business leaders. Johnson’s closing message emphasized the digital transformation of the last year. Yes, we should be excited to return to in-person business soon, but we should also take advantage of our ability to use digital tools like Zoom to reach customers in every corner of the world. “Whether you are in financial services or some type of lifestyle product, we are in the moment where your customer base is not based on your geography — your customer base is global, and you can touch them at any given point,” Johnson said. You can watch the full Hello Alice x NAACP town hall both linked above and on YouTube.
Apr 5, 2021 • 2 min read

Dany Garcia on the Latinx the Mosaic Grant Fund

Long before Dany Garcia learned what it meant to an entrepreneur, she remembers learning what it meant to be a Latina. "Not only was I the only Cuban in my high school, I was the only Latina in my high school with my sister and my younger brother," Garcia said. "Right from the beginning there was this attitude that I was a little bit different, but I couldn’t understand why." Best known today as the co-founder of Seven Bucks Companies, CEO of The Garcia Companies, and the new owner of the XFL, Garcia has come to understand the true diversity of the Hispanic and Latinx community, which spans different nationalities, races, and indigenous roots. What is Latinx the Mosaic? That diversity is one reason the businesswoman partnered with Hello Alice on a new initiative called Latinx the Mosaic. Structured as a $100,000 grant fund for Hispanic and Latinx business owners, Garcia's program also convened a panel of multi-hyphenate activists from the Latinx community to begin a conversation in service of a kinder, more inclusive identity. Speaking with professor and author Tanya Hernández, award winning filmmaker Nadia Hallgren, Orange Is the New Black actress Dascha Yolaine Polanco, fitness guru Robin Arzón, and journalist Lilliana Vazquez, Garcia hosted a virtual discussion in which each woman described a similar journey of finding their place in the larger community.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53HF6YbMmbw&feature=emb_title Conversation Takeaways "Even though my my dad was Puerto Rican, I thought that all Latinos were Mexicanos — that was my identity," says Vazquez, who grew up in Texas. "That was all my family and my community around me. Later, I quickly realized that this community is rich in culture and rich in diversity." Whether it was being teased for having curly hair or shamed for a lack of Spanish language skills, many of the women on the panel described aspects of colorism and racism that penetrated every aspect of life, including their careers, relationships, body image, and family dynamics. Each said it took many years to grow into a sense of pride and understanding regarding their identity. "As I’m older, I feel like we have to pick a side," Polanco said of her Afro-Dominican identity. "But it’s not about which one I want to be. I want to be all." Showing that there is no singular way to be Latina has become an important part of each participant's life as a role model for the next generation — something that isn't always easy. “We don’t have to be perfect in making this happen," Garcia said in conclusion. "We just need to make it happen." For more small business tips and inspiration create a free account on Hello Alice or subscribe to our weekly newsletter.
Oct 15, 2020 • 2 min read

5 of Our Favorite Diverse Founders at CES 2020

Last year at CES, the Consumer Technical Association, which puts on the conference every year in Las Vegas, announced that it would invest $10 million in venture firms and funds focused on women, people of color, and other historically underserved entrepreneurs. According to the CTA's 2019 Economic Impact Study, women and other underrepresented groups hold one-third of all tech jobs. That hasn't changed much in the last three decades, despite the fact that tech professions have surged. In fact, between 1991 and 2017, women have become 5% less likely to have a computing job. Basically, the CTA realizes that there’s a big gap in diversity in the tech world, and it’s doing what it can to fill it. And given our mission of helping all founders to find success, so is Alice. Yesterday, we sent entrepreneur in residence Ramon Ray and director of marketing Sandra Crawford out into CES’s Eureka Park, devoted entirely to startups, to find business owners who didn’t fit the common profile of white men who mostly filled the building. Here are some of the stellar people we met. Mymanu Ever been on a business call with a foreign client or investor and wished that you could automatically speak their language? Danny Manu of Mymanu feels your pain. Manu started developing his CLIK earbuds in 2012 while working full-time as an engineer at a major aerospace company in his homeland of England. CLIK allows users to hear real-time translations in 37 languages, powered by Manu’s own Mymanu Translate system. In 2018, another of Manu’s inventions, the GABBY speaker, which uses its own voice-triggering software that doesn’t require wi-fi (preventing spying), won CES’s Innovation Award. Loopie Laundry Hate doing your laundry? Or worse still, don’t have a washer-dryer in your small apartment? The Loopie Laundry team has you in mind. Well, actually, not just you. They also know that there are folks out there who do have laundry facilities and are eager to take advantage of a new gig economy and wash your underwear for you. Welcome to the world of the loopy service created by CEO John Vincent Lee. Since launching in 2018, the company has already grown to employ 20 people, as well as attracting a fleet of washer men and women around Seattle. Vivoo We all know that peeing on a stick or strip can tell you if you’re pregnant or have diabetes. But what if something so simple could go much deeper? Miray Tayfun is proving that it can with her app, Vivoo. By tracking your urine, Vivoo can tell you anything from the state of your liver and kidneys to whether you have a urinary tract infection. All you have to do is pee on the strip and scan it with the app. From there, the program undertakes a complex health overview. The young Turkish bioengineer is already a serial entrepreneur and definitely one to watch. InsideCoach Smart Technology Soccer coach Nicolas San Juan was disappointed that his daughter didn’t enjoy practicing the sport outside of games and team scrimmages. But with a computer science degree, a career in technology, and a small team of engineers, he made soccer practice a whole lot cooler. His invention, InsideCoach Smart Soccer Ball, is filled with sensors that connect to a smartphone. After a practice, you can analyze your game down to every spin, kick, and pass. If it made a little girl more passionate about practice, just imagine what it could do to refine the games in the pros. Compocket For those still stinging from the disappointment of Elizabeth Holmes, look no further than İlayda Büyükdoğal. The co-founder of Compocket is just 22 years old, a college dropout, and is a real scientist with a product that works. Her invention is undeniably nerdy. We had to look up what an oscilloscope was in order to appreciate the fact that Büyükdoğal had helped to create a pocket-sized version. Oscilloscopes are instruments used to test electrical test signals and chart them in graph form. For scientists, this is transformative, because it allows them to work anywhere with ease — no heavy equipment necessary. And Büyükdoğal isn’t stopping there. She wants to do the same for other old-fashioned, unwieldy devices. For more small business tips and inspiration create a free account on Hello Alice or subscribe to our weekly newsletter.
Jan 8, 2020 • 3 min read

5 Takeaways from Circular Summit 2019

Two weeks ago, in Sonoma County, California, at Circular Summit, we took all of the stories told about women entrepreneurs ("Only 2.2% of venture capital went to women." "The average loan size for women is 31% below that of men." "Women-owned businesses generate just 4.3% of total private sector revenue."), crumpled them up, stomped on them, and caught glimpse of a new world where we tell the story of entrepreneurship just like it is: a personal battle of grit, access, and a healthy dose of luck. Of the 400+ women entrepreneurs in attendance, some  had crossed the billion dollar valuation threshold; others were ideas incubating in someone's mind, just starting to take shape. No matter where the stories started, stagnated, or catapulted, by Friday's close, it seemed that we had all gained a newfound energy from our collective community. After four years of watching this community become more diverse, supportive, and inclusive, I wanted to share a few lessons we've learned, in hopes that this energy can be replicated elsewhere, and multiply: 1. Tell the whole truth. There is not a human on this earth without insecurities, and this only intensifies for someone who has quit the traditional path in lieu of the unknown (i.e., entrepreneurs). When we check armor at the door, talk about the real things that keep us up at night (cash flow, anyone?), and open the door to those difficult, uncomfortable conversations, relationships get real, and fast. At Circular Summit, we do this by sharing our own journey in building HelloAlice, which, while different, is just as unpredictable as any other. We do this, because truth begets truth, and we all hate superficial small talk. 2. Bring the outside in... Each year, we've increased the number of scholarships offered to guests. We know it's expensive to get to a conference, and we want to ensure that financial privilege isn't a prerequisite. We are able to do this because we ask our partners to support our mission of inclusion, and they respond, wholeheartedly. As I heard stories of how people made their way to Circular Summit, it was so clearly apparent that those scholarships didn't just offer access to a conference; they offered access to a stronger community for all of us. To all who joined us via scholarship, and to all who made those scholarships possible, I have nothing but gratitude, and a promise that we'll continue to do more. 3. ...and bring the inside out. For the first time, we took our community outdoors, with twelve unique adventure tracks, and they served their purpose in getting all of us out of our comfort zones, into our sneakers, and starting conversations with investors, mentors, and fellow entrepreneurs. From horseback riding to cheese making, we all gave our business-cluttered minds a moment of white space to build real relationships that ultimately led to investor meetings, media coverage, partner collaborations, and more. You river rafters get a special shout-out here, for proving that women entrepreneurs are unflappable. 4. The middle is a messy, messy place for all of us. As we started to unravel the "messy middle" of entrepreneurship, everybody had a story to tell. From our friends in venture capital, to corporate leaders driving change, to entrepreneurs at every stage of the game, our entire ecosystem is aligned in trying to sort through change. The answers are rarely black and white, and there is no clear start and finish. We're all learning as we go, and even if we share every secret of our paths, we'll never end up in the same place. It's why we're able to collaborate, to support, and to cheer on even those we may be competing with. 5. Rules were meant to be broken. There is no pipeline problem. That much was apparent with a single glance across the event, and it's something I see in cities across the United States and beyond. We spoke with 400 brilliant minds challenging the status quo, solving real-world problems, and building scalable solutions that offer massive financial opportunities. But beyond the pipeline, and the outcomes, the journey is different with community by our sides. When you open the doors, spark real and authentic conversation, and invite all people to speak up, entrepreneurship starts to look a lot less lonely, a lot more diverse, and a hell of a lot more fun. For more small business tips and inspiration create a free account on Hello Alice or subscribe to our weekly newsletter.
May 21, 2019 • 3 min read

Get the Most From Circular Summit (and Other Conferences)

Put Those Business Cards Back in Your Wallet — Here’s How You Should Approach Every Networking Event We’ve all been to the networking event where you do the business card handoff dance over and over…and over. The thing is, we don’t do that dance because it’s effective, but rather, because it’s easy. So, as we gear up for Circular Summit (March 1–2, 2018), let’s make a commitment to each other: we will leave the shallow end and make the most out of our time at events. Let’s form deeper connections and expand our circle of fierce mentors, partners and friends. Here’s how we can do it: Be Open This year, arrive at Circular Summit and other events with your expectations at a minimum. Expectations can close our mind to opportunities for learning, dreaming and relationship building. You never know who you will meet, how you can collaborate with each other or what new adventures you may encounter. Circular Summit 2017 Give and Ye Shall Receive You know the saying, “if you put good energy out into the world, it’ll return to you tenfold?” The same holds true for networking. We’re all in this entrepreneurship thing together, and the more we can support each other, the higher we’ll all rise. At Circular Summit, you’ll find a “Giving Tree,” where you can ask for advice and offer help. Take advantage of the opportunity to be of service to your circle and solve your own challenges, at the same time. Sneak peek of the “Giving Tree” at Circular Summit 2018 Ride the Elevator (Pitch) Hone your pitch (30 seconds, 5 minutes and longer) before you get to Circular Summit, because there will be chances around every corner to tell your story. At past events, attendees have walked away with stories in major media outlets, like Entrepreneur and Inc., investor commitments, corporate partnerships and prizes galore. Practice in front of the mirror, your grandma and the dog. And then practice some more to make sure that your messages and calls to action are crystal clear. Circular Summit 2017 attendees mingling and making connections Connect the Dots The upcoming two days of Circular Summit are just the cracked door; you have to walk through that door and down the road to achieve your goals. Follow up with the people you meet at the conference and keep following up. Schedule monthly or quarterly check-in calls to continue to support each other. Ask Hello Alice your burning questions and request introductions to other users you find on the site. March 1–2 are just the beginning of your best year yet.
Feb 1, 2018 • 2 min read

Our 5 Favorite Moments at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2017

If you’ve ever attended a technology conference, you know that the gender scales tip heavily into the cis male category. TechCrunch Disrupt SF didn’t break that trend, as evidenced by the bathroom lines. We’re all for short restroom lines, but this disparity is too striking to celebrate. Bathrooms aside, there were quite a few shining moments for female founders and women tech stars throughout the three days in San Francisco. Let’s take a look at some of Team Alice’s favorite moments from Disrupt: Have you ever wanted to walk around handing out billion-dollar bills? Team Alice did, too, and so we did. Check out #HelloAlice on Twitter and Instagram for some amazing billion-dollar ideas from female founders at Disrupt.Alice Ambassador Anita Darden Gardyne took home the Startup Battlefield runner-up honors, and we couldn’t be more proud of this amazing woman. Read more about her corporate concierge service, Onēva, in TechCrunch.Who knew breastfeeding and technology went together like peanut butter and jelly? Circular Board accelerator alums and Medolac founders Adrianne Weir and Elena Medo took to the stage to talk about what it’s like to be a mother-daughter startup team and to innovate the donor breastmilk market. Breastfeeding design company Mamava also had a station set up in Startup Alley, and though it wasn’t operational Disrupt, the application for shopping malls, offices, etc. is a genius idea.Pymetrics, founded by Julie Yoo and Frida Polli, is using AI to omit intrinsic biases in hiring practices. Even cooler? Anyone can take the Pymetrics test to get scored on their hireable traits and find out which jobs are best suited for you.Our own Carolyn Rodz took to the Women of Disrupt stage to talk about creating Alice so that other women entrepreneurs don’t have to waste time and money trying to figure out the right business practices, events, and networks for their company. She also broke the news that Alice closed its first equity financing round with investors like, Signia Venture Partners, Jean Case, Sherpa Ventures, Shatter Fund, Ann Lovell, Cathie Reid and Jacki Zehner. With so much happening at Pier 48, we know we missed out on other amazing talks and announcements from female founders. Tweet us at @HelloAlice with links, pics, quotes, or anything else that you want to help spotlight, and we’ll help get the word out.
Sep 23, 2017 • 2 min read