Wow, last episode of doing my first TV series!
For those who don’t know Shark Tank, this show or versions of it are being shown in over 25 countries around the world. Some of you may know it as Dragon’s Den or Monkey’s Tiger – which was its original name when it started in Japan in 2001.
What a ride doing this show was. I got to know my fellow investors better and loved chatting about all the things in their lives and their life journey. I have learned an enormous amount of general business by doing the show and got a real appreciation of different industries and the challenges that each industry faces. We saw over 120 pitches (I think 65-70 went to air) and in every pitch I learned something new; whether it was how to transform rice waste into plywood or the origins of aboriginal art.
Pictures tell a thousand words, so here are some of my snaps from my iPhone to share.
The journey so far
I was so surprised when I first come on-set by how many people are involved with getting a show up-and-running. The above left photo was taken on the last day and is of the entire crew. I have to say how lucky we were, as they were a great bunch of people. One of the reasons we would love to be part of Season Two is to be able to hang out and have some fun with the people in this pic.
When you say yes to something like a TV show, you get to share the experience with loved ones. Many of our family and friends visited us on set during the filming. I think they were more impressed that the Voice was filmed in the same studio that Shark Tank was!
Riley, above middle, was doing work experience so he got to hang with mum for a few days. My niece, Tiffany, also worked next door, which was handy for visits. Riley is my biggest critic and he was very happy to point out all the things I did wrong on a daily basis on the show – and in his opinion, there were many…!
During the shooting, Andrew and I had a birthday. Having had a few in my time I was very happy to let the day unfold without any mention of birthday but to my surprise, as we were waiting for the next pitch, the doors opened and Sarah and Alison came through the doors with flowers and cake.
There were some amazing pitches. The one above right was was a horror concept. The young lady was in character the WHOLE time. It was a bit creepy but I am assuming that was the point!
I enjoyed sitting next to Steve. He has the same sense of humour as I do and he is a little bit naughty, so we had a lot of laughs. Steve is a classic man that has the boy still in him and he spent most of the time doing everyone’s job, from the cameraman to the clapper.
One thing you don’t realise when you do a TV show is that it’s not just about the show itself but the introduction and the promotions surrounding the show. The photo above right is us filming the opening scene. It was freezing and windy – hence the robes! They did get the shots but it was not that successful.
Above left is our cameraman. I was very nice to him so that he used good filters.
In the above middle photo, we were doing PR shots and we were into our fifth hour and my shoulder was being used as a prop for Steve’s photo, hence my opportunity to get some email done.
Sarah Harris, is a delight and a true professional. She was a real asset for me in understanding how the TV world works. It was great to get to know her better with our early morning makeup sessions. Above right is a visit I had at the Studio Ten studios.
We were very lucky that the critics were kind to the show. They were very supportive on what we were doing and it was a lot of fun.
Above from left to right: Oliver from La Mule, the boys from Incurstion, Emma from Flybabee.
My back ground is PR, so this part of the job was not too much of a surprise. I must admit, I didn’t think I was going to be in a fashion magazine, let alone win the InStyle business award, which was a really fun night. They certainly do it well.
This was, to be honest, my greatest fear with doing the show. You are in the hands of the editors and also, what you say doesn’t please all the people all the time. I had to learn to switch off the negative comments. Sometimes people don’t understand that it’s not a game show but a business show, and it really, really is our own money and time we’re committing after the show, so we take this very seriously. This was the first time that I was actually active on Twitter and I found the comments to be very positive and people genuinely liked the feedback and the information that we posted on Twitter and the other social platforms.
Nat, who is one of the behind-the-scenes guys who does facebook etc, was very active in getting reach on social media. One thing we did was a live chat one evening. I was thrilled that we reached over 18,000 people, who interacted with our blogs. A throw-away comment I made about my boobs had the biggest reaction. The back story is that we were trying to get a bra that worked with the top I wore on the show and I am very tiny in the boob area, so we were struggling to find anything. Hence why my boobs were front of mind!
Of course there are perks to being on TV. You get invited to the best parties, like the Logies, and to places like the Jamala Wildlife Lodge, just to name a couple. The Logies was great fun and was a great chance to catch up with Naomi and Steve for a mini reunion.
The other thing that surprised me was the inspiration that you give to people. You forget the impact that telling your story has on other people.
Finally, thanks for reading my Shark Tank Blog, and I hope you have found it informative and sometimes entertaining having a sneak peek into the mind of a Shark on Shark Tank. I think you will have found that we are mad as hatters but also simple people having a crack. I truly hope you have enjoyed the show and we hope to inspire you to create your own business one day.
Now onto my last comments on the pitches.
What a great idea and something that is a great solution to a problem. The models loved the product and said all the right things. The business had good margins and she is fulfilling a hole in the market that is growing. The freight for overseas was a problem that she needed to focus on. The main issue for me was her focus on the USA when there was a lot of work to do here. There were some problems with overseas as the cost doubles due to freight. She spoke quite a lot about America in the business which did put me off.
Thrilled that Naomi did the deal here and she got a great partner in Naomi.
Joanne and Michelle
Mr Brown tanning
I did not believe in the business model, as the product is available now for men. The girls did a good job with the presentation and Michelle knew her business but it take a long time in my opinion for them to get this product to where it is. They should have maximised the early publicity and this was a concern for me.
They got Naomi’s mummy voice, as she calls it, which is never a good thing! But it was with good reason and I agreed with Naomi; it was very hard to follow the pitch when multiple people were talking at the same time. There is no way we can understand what they are selling if everyone is talking over the top of each other.
They were not hungry enough in business for me to invest. You need to not leave any stone unturned, and these guys did not seem that way to me. You need to be more hungry to succeed. They may have the tenacity required, but they did not show it in the pitch.
I love property and do some sort of development every year, so this was really interesting for me. I just did not love the product nor the business model. He may do very well but it didn’t interest me.
The numbers didn’t make sense. He was proposing eight units that did not make money. He needed more like sixteen units to break even or make a small profit. The business model did not work for me.
The business model seemed incomplete, so I couldn’t invest at this time.
Lauren and Elena
How could you not love these girls! The margins on this business are amazing. I am an expert in this industry so I know the pitfalls and what it takes to get this business to the next level. They were looking at bottling the product, which is a highly competitive market and in my opinion a high risk strategy. Their revenue at this early stage also needs to increase but they have a great start and they are doing events really well. They need to get their trademark sorted.
I have met with these girls a number of times to assist in their direction as well as doing trials on some of these products.
I will watch this business grow with interest. Good luck ladies. Steve is a great partner.