Tiny Startup Camp

A tiny camp for making tiny startups.

November 10-11, 2012
Portland, Oregon

Tiny Start Camp reduces prices, offers partial refunds, and tells a story.

Today we’re announcing that we’re lowering our ticket price to $50; we’re also refunding on a pro-rated basis to make all previously purchased tickets $50.

The short story:

Ticket prices were high for a first time conference, and we weren’t going to sell out the event, which is a shame… So, we’re changing that and being transparent in the process.

The long story:

(note: I’m a big fan of W+K’s philosophy to Fail Harder. I’m about to, so get ready :)

I’ve tried to be honest that this Tiny Startup Camp is an experiment. I’ve never run a conference or event of any kind before, and I had some ideas that I wanted to try. I also know there’s huge demand for this type of information (making tiny startups).

Since I’m always game for trying something new, and this actually meets my criteria for my own tiny startups, this became my next tiny startup (how meta, right?).

I’m really excited about sharing the information I’ve collected, and I’m even more excited about what our speakers are going to be sharing. This is absolutely going to be an amazing event.

So, what’s the problem?

Well, the ticket prices were high; at a level that required me to tell a compelling story demonstrating the value of attending.

This is where I think I failed. I didn’t do that properly. And I’m still trying to figure the best way to do that.

However, I do think that this is going to be a great event, maybe even better than other events I’ve attended costing over $500 (looking at you SXSW). I just didn’t tell that story well enough. Now, we sold about half our capacity, which I still think is awesome, but I would love for more people to come.

This is where the Tiny Lesson comes in.

If I’d have thought huge, and rented out a big space, I’d be screwed. But I purposely started small, knowing this was a first time event. And now, when I have to make an adjustment, I can without worrying about closing the doors or going bankrupt. This whole thing is like a tiny startup, one where I’m staying agile/lean/nimble/whatever. Failing isn’t a bad word. It can be as simple as recognizing when something isn’t working, and fixing it. When an idea, or a decision, or a method fails, you learn from it, and correct it.

So now that I’ve acknowledged a mistake, I have two choices: mope and whine and complain not enough people are coming; or do something about it. Sure, it’s a little embarrassing when you write blog posts about the mistakes, but who the hell cares. Let’s have a great event with people who are excited to learn, and people who are excited to teach. What’s really embarrassing is screwing that part up. But that’s not what I’m worried about.

So, what next then?

Now, all tickets are $50, period. We think this is a screaming deal. But, the one thing I’ve realized is that it’s our job to prove it.

So, we’re not only offering a dramatically lower price, we’ll offer a refund to anyone who comes away from this conference that isn’t blown away. MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. For a CONFERENCE!


It’s effective immediately and all that. If you have questions, shoot me an email: jason@jasonglaspey.com

Let’s make some tiny startups people. You’re invited.

Oh, and you should sign up here.

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  • Guest

    BTW: The Eventbrite site still shows prices @ $250/$175

    • jasonglaspey

      This should be fixed… Sorry about that.

  • http://danielbachhuber.com/ Daniel Bachhuber

    How did you choose the new $50 price point? What sort of comments did you get about the previous price structure?

    • jasonglaspey

      Actually, almost everyone I talked to thought the original price was totally reasonable. But those were people I could personally explain the conference to, and the value. A lot of those people signed up. However, people I didn’t know, or didn’t get a chance to talk to, weren’t signing up at the same rate. So, I picked a number that seems ridiculously low. If it was me, I’d sign up in a second at a $50 conference. So, it was just a gut number.

  • Christian

    You sold half the conference at $175+ and have now reduced to $50 to sell it out?

    Math fail!

    • jasonglaspey

      Yup. I am losing money by giving partial refunds. If I stayed half-full, at full price, I made more money. But my goal isn’t just to make money. I actually really want to have a great event that helps a lot of people. And second, I hope to have more of these events over the next year or two. And the best way to sell out future events, is to demonstrate how awesome the first one is. Which is a lot easier to do when it’s filled with excited, motivated, people.

  • http://twitter.com/camikaos Cami Kaos

    The eventbrite pricing is fixed. Sorry about that, it was a race against the clock as Jason posted!