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Sample Program Schedule

Our program is an immersive education in entrepreneurship for high-potential ventures. Click to view our sample week-to-week program schedule for the Western Accelerator.


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Western Accelerator Program Outline

 

Week 1

Western Accelerator Kickoff: The purpose of the Accelerator Kickoff is to help everyone get acquainted with the program, and to spend time getting to know each other. There will be an overview of the Accelerator, an opportunity to ask questions, an introduction to each team, and some fun virtual activities together.

Refining your Vision and Understanding Early Adopters: During the Vision section of this workshop we will dig deep into your values and what drives you to make this startup happen. We will use several exercises to uncover or refine your core values, core ideology and what makes you tick. We’ll get this down on paper so you can get comfortable articulating this to customers, investors and employees.

In Understanding your Early Adopters we will create a framework that we can use as a common vernacular to describe where your customers land in the product adoption lifecycle. This will help you quickly identify who your customers are, what drives them and how difficult it will be to land them as a paying client.  


Week 2

Value Proposition: During this session, we will describe the 6 elements of a value proposition. For all entrepreneurs it is critical to be able to articulate your value proposition as succinctly as possible, and in order to do that you must be able to understand it completely. We will take a deep dive into understanding your customers and why they implicitly and explicitly want to buy from you.

Following this session you will be required to schedule 1-on-1 time with the instructor to review the value proposition you have written.

Mentor Hours: Each team will have the opportunity to spend 30 minutes 1-on-1 with Eric Morse, Executive Director Morrissette Institute for Entrepreneurship, to discuss the current state of their startup, and where they need help. Eric will provide advice, guidance and introductions where appropriate.

 

Week 3

Customer Interviews: The last thing you want to do as an entrepreneur is to build a product that does not meet your customer’s needs. In this session we will uncover a framework that will help you talk to customers in a way that will reveal new insights into your customer’s mindset. Following this session you will be required to conduct 10 customer interviews within the next 2 weeks.

Week 4

Leadership: What is your leadership style? During this session, we will use a personality framework to uncover your leadership style under normal conditions, and under stress. You will not only learn new things about yourself, but your co-founder(s) and cohort members as well.

Week 5

Sales: In this session we will be learning about the sales process and how we can us OKRs to propel our business forward. We’ll also talk about practical strategies that you can use today to get the attention of your first customers.   

 

Week 6

B2B Sales: B2B sales is very difficult and has many ups and downs. In this workshop, we will lead you through an Ivey Case about challenges encountered by Boise Automation. The learning outcomes will help you think differently about how you approach B2B sales and the people involved.

Mentor Hours: Each team will have the opportunity to spend 30 minutes 1-on-1 with Eric Morse, Executive Director Morrissette Institute for Entrepreneurship, to discuss the current state of their startup, and where they need help. Eric will provide advice, guidance and introductions where appropriate.

 

Week 7

Intellectual Property: In this workshop we will explore intermediate topics in Intellectual Property. The discussion will cover Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights and how they can be used to protect your company. We will also spend time discussing the IP of each team.
Customer Interviews Due: Results of the Customer Interviews from the Feb 9th workshop are due at 4:00pm. Please use insights from your interviews to write at least 2 digital ads and 1 landing page.       

 

Week 8

Copywriting: Writing copy for your website and marketing is easy right? Or is it?? In this session we will talk about the goal of copywriting, how to define your brand voice, and take some time to review your ads and landing pages.

Following this workshop you will need to setup a Facebook or Google ads campaign to get test data for our March 23 workshop.

 

Week 9

SRED and Government Grants: During this session we will provide an in-depth look at SRED and several other Government grant that may be applicable to you. The second part of the session will cover topics related to Bookkeeping, Accounting and planning for tax time.

Mentor Hours: Each team will have the opportunity to spend 30 minutes 1-on-1 with Eric Morse, Executive Director Morrissette Institute for Entrepreneurship, to discuss the current state of their startup, and where they need help. Eric will provide advice, guidance and introductions where appropriate.

 

Week 10

Search Engine Optimization: Now that we understand our customer and have written landing pages that speak to our customer in our brand voices… *Gasp* ... It’s time to start driving traffic to our site. How does Google know to recommend our site vs. others? We’ll take and advanced dive into how we can drive unpaid (but not free) traffic to our website.

 

Week 11

Paid Ads: We’ve talked about how to drive free traffic to our site, but how do we get sales leads today? This session will cover both Facebook and Google ads platforms and how to set them up for success.

 

Week 12

Pitching to Investors: What are the elements of a good investor pitch? We will take you through all the slides that make a good pitch deck, and describe each of them in detail. Following this workshop you will be able to book time to review your deck for Amplify and WADD.

 

Week 13

Public Relations: Getting press to promote your business takes intentional work. Don’t get caught unprepared for your first interview with a journalist. In this session, we will discuss the challenges of getting your business covered and how to prepare once you’ve scheduled an interview.

 

Week 14 - 16

TBD: This time slot is will be planned after the cohort begins based on team needs.

 

Week 17

Western Angels’ Demo Day: Demo Day is an incredible opportunity to get your business in front of Western Alumni who are business investors including angels, VCs and institutional investors. Only the top 4 presentations from Amplify will be chosen to pitch at WADD.