A couple on months ago I initiated a survey, aimed at learning my own market – the market of startups and hi-tech entrepreneurs and their approach to contracting expert help.

I would like to share the current results on the startup pattern survey. An updated summary will be published when I have more responses. If you didn’t fill it yet go to:
http://www.yourpinion.net/The_Startup_Experts_Pattern

Here is a summary of the initial results, in percentages:

Who participated?
66% entrepreneurs who answered are from the Internet and media industry.
10% Enterprise software
10% Life Sciences
3% wireless/mobile

41%- are in the idea stage/initial development/bootstrapping.
28% are looking for seed money.
14% are after a first round investment.

55% have a founding team only
14% of the companies have 10-25 employees.
10% have up to 5 employees.

72% of the participating entrepreneurs are males.
24% are females.
The rest didn’t fill in this detail.

52% are between 25-35 years old.
38% are 35-45
7% are 45-55.

Education –
41% have business experience and 34.5% have startup experience.
38% hold a BA, 31% hold an MBA and 13.8% are engineers.

Title:
35% describe themselves as entrepreneurs
21% as CEOs
17% as serial entrepreneurs
10% as VP Marketing or Business Development.
Only 3% – CTOs

Location – nearly 45% didn’t select a location.
21% are from the Sharon area
14% are located in Gush Dan
10% are not in Israel
3% are in the north of Israel
0% in from the south.

The pattern:
Only 65% have a business plan and/or executive summary.
55% have a also a marketing plan
24% have a communications scheme or branding strategy in addition
24% don’t have any of the above.

59% said they did their business plan/executive summary/marketing plan on their own.
27% used the help of a business consultant
24% used a lawyer
24% used a graphic artist or studio
21% used internal resources
14% used a marketing consultant
7% used a communications strategist

To the question which resources you assume you may use in the future for strategic plans:
55% said they can do it on their own
44% said they will use graphic artists or studios
41% said they will use a business consultant
38% said they will use a marketing consultant
31% said they will use a lawyer
28% said they will use an accountant
17% said they will try a branding consultant or firm
17% said they will need a copywriter
17% said they will manage strategic plans using internal resources
14% said they will use a communications strategist
10% said they will use an outsourced project manager.

What outsources will you use if you had no budget limitations?
65% – a strategic consultant
59% – SEO search engine optimization
55% – PR
55% – web marketing specialist
51% marketing consultant
52% – graphics studio
52% – branding firm
45% – copywriter
45% – research and information specialist
35% – Communication strategist
24% – naming expert

Opinion regarding hiring professional consultants or outsources:
38% – can’t afford it
17% – prefer to do it in house
17% – are concerned because of legal/patent/secrecy issues
7% didn’t find outsourced answer to their needs.

Preferred method of contracting help:
52% – agree on a project’s budget
14% – hire employees
10% – get full time partners
7% – agree on an monthly retainer fee
7% – agree on a reduced fee plus equity or options
3% – pay an hourly rate