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December 2016

About me

What did I do this year? My 2017 new year’s resolutions

H-Farm -Venice- pic by Alessia Camera

2017: what did I do this year?

Last year’s digital detox article have ben tremendously successful, so I decided to keep it like a yearly meeting. But before, what am I worried about this year?
Last year I was experiencing FOMO, this year I see everyone’s digital bias. How is it possible that everyone’s thinking of appearing rather than learning? People are pushing perceptions rather than been recognised for their work or expertise. What’s going on? Are we getting into a world of people pretending to be, when the internet and information can help us learning everything on a fingertip?

I’ll leave it here for the moment and I’ll ask myself another question. What did I do this year? As you know I’m never satisfied and I always think I can do more. I don’t know if it’s because I’m writing it down now, but this year I think I’ve achieved even more than the last one and I’m very proud of it.

I learned to speak up in the right way

When you’re working with big companies you know that speaking up is not always a good idea.
Well, even in some small ones. But this year, thanks to the choice of going back full-time to startups I got the opportunity of working with very passionate people, talking and arguing to make a product every day better. And I learned from their strength, from their passion and their enthusiasm that at one point you need to leave and that’s the best thing you can do to yourself.

Take your time

This year I travelled a lot, I needed it. I needed time to think, to spend by myself. I’ve experienced the first solo trip of my life, where I hear from my silences and from the inner of myself. alessiacamera-stepoutfromyourcomfortzonePeople told me I’ve been brave. But why? Just because I decided to go to Lanzarote alone for one week? I learned to take my time, book my slots and avoid the rest.
In Lanzarote’s been easy.
Not sure I’m good enough when I’m doing it in London! 🙂

Be confident: public speaking hero

I pushed myself in terms of digital marketing workshops and public speaking events accepting the invitation to speak at the Web Marketing Festival in Italy and running digital marketing workshops for artisan and handicraft associations.
It was the first time ever I was speaking in Italians to such a big audience about my experience in growth hacking. And I’m very proud that my talk has been valued as one of the best 6 out of 160 speakers!

Be ready even if you don’t know there’s a train passing: OMG!

meryl-streep-oyeah-2017 new years resolutionsSometimes you need to be ready, even if you don’t know there’s a train passing. It seems to me that, for a lot of projects I’ve been involved, everyone was just waiting for the right circumstances.
There’s a secret project you’ll hear about in 2017 (I can’t tell you more for now but I’ll let you know as soon as I can, promised!!). A few early stage startups: Rawfish is the only one I can mention, the other three are in stealth mode.
I mentored startups at H-Farm and I’m going there also in 2017 to mentor the new batch. And it’s so exciting you can’t believe. Everything I’ve been involved in I didn’t do it on purpose: it just came up as I was ready to jump on it.

Do what you’re passionate about

This year, thanks to this blog, I realised how much I’m passionate about writing. I’ve been asked to write a piece about girls in tech and to write an article about men mentoring women for the Austin startup collection. And you know what? I love the topic and I want to do more to help more women in tech.

I also worked a lot to redesign This is Not Art‘s website and to organise the international touring exhibition Personal Relations which opened in London in December, putting together 150 artists from 3 different countries. It’s been an incredible journey and I’m very happy that 40 artists are coming from Vicenza. I look forward to the private viewing in The Hague and Vicenza…can’t wait for it!

2017 New Years Resolutions

There are 3 things I’ll keep the focus on for 2017:

  1. Learning where my energy is coming from and optimise that channel, in the same way, I’ll do it if it were a traffic or conversion sources 🙂
  2. Make the projects I’m working on amazing: set goals and build plans to exceed them;
  3. Learn as much as I can taking part to discussion and online groups, without been scared of it. If you’re confident in yourself, people will listen to you and it will enrich everyone.

be a better you 2017 new years resolutions

Have a great break, everyone!
See ya in 2017!



Are you a food delivery startup? Start pivoting NOW

food delivery startup london alessiacamera

When you’re working in a startup you need to be ready to pivot every time you see that something in your industry is changing. And I think there are a lot of things happening in this industry which is not guaranteeing a bright and sustainable future.
So, I think if you’re working in a food delivery startup you should run away the fastest you can, as a lot of things are happening giving an idea of where it’s leading to.

Anatomy of a food delivery startup

anatomy-of-a-food-startup-alessiacameraEveryone needs to eat 3 times a day, you might think food delivery is a great business opportunity to be in. You need to pick the category and decide on your business model.

It is a huge space in terms of consumer demand,” says Luciana Lixandru, an investor who helped lead venture capitalist company Accel’s investment in Deliveroo. “People eat three times a day.
“It is one of these markets, like the transportation market, that is so large and it is expanding because it is more affordable now,” she adds, before adding that no new food delivery start-up should be discounted. “It is very early days in Europe. I don’t think you can underestimate anyone.

The food delivery category includes:

  • Meal/restaurant delivery (e.g., Deliveroo, Delivery Hero, FoodPanda)
  • Meal kits (e.g., HelloFresh, Blue Apron)
  • Grocery delivery (e.g., Instacart, Postmates, Door to Door Organics)

In terms of business model you need to plan out on:

  • Decide on your delivery location;
  • Plan your operational needs;
  • Get in touch with eateries within a set radius;
  • Vehicles and delivery employees.

Work on the product, be passionate about food and be ready to charge 15-25% restaurants for your service. It does sound easy, doesn’t it?

Marketing campaigns for a food delivery startup

Apart from the brand, users need to understand the advantage of using the app.
You need to give users an advantage in terms of time and access and make easy to use the app.
It’s about to leverage technology to unlock value in the cost structure and innovate to pull ahead.
A marketing plan should not only be geared up for building a brand, but you have to invest time, energy and money on the channels which get you immediate traffic and revenue.

Goals to achieve:

  1. new users, 
  2. repeat sales , 
  3. recommendation/referrals. 

Strategies and ideas for your digital marketing plan:

  • paid social campaigns, contests, social/time-limited unique discounts.
  • use notifications and discounts to push users to use the app again through newsletters, events-related campaigns or a loyalty program.
  • bulk orders, online to offline social venues (i.e. give promotions for specific FB groups or online communities) or charity-related events.

Funding and deals in the food delivery industry

According to a recent research by CB Insight, after a few peaks in 2014 (+570% year-over-year) and 2015 (+184%), when it hit nearly $5.5 billion across 259 deals, this year things have changed A LOT.
The category’s three most well-funded companies were responsible for 2015′s five largest deals: three deals to the Chinese raised over $2.2B, the German Delivery Hero raised $563M, and the Chinese Womai raised $220M.

Larger competitors include the UK’s Just Eat, which debuted on the London Stock Exchange in 2014 and Deliveroo, which recently picked $275m in a new funding round.

In 2016 only $609M across 23 deals in the first quarter of 2016. A fell of more than 90% in the first quarter. What’s going on?

food delivery startup-annual-2016-alessiacamera-CBinsight

On the other way, companies that deliver meal kits directly to consumers are gaining traction in the UK. According to a report from CardlyticsHelloFresh and Gousto are growing by nearly 65% in the first half of 2016, compared with the same period in 2015.


Pic by Todd Quackenbush

A few food delivery startups have already shut down: do you want to be the next?

Pronto, a London-founded healthy food delivery startup founded in 2014, has shut down in September after running out of money to sustain itself. After having raised $1.6 million (£1.2 million) last August and £800,000 on crowdfunding platform Seedrs in June, it needed more capital in order to compete in this crowded market.
Before was the turn of Take Eat Easy, a Belgium-founded food delivery startup backed by Rocket Internet, which shut down for the same reason earlier in June.
So, why investors are not really keen to pour more money into this category?

London is still the most important city for startups in Europe. It’s the city where you can see the trends and the reactions before every other country in Europe.
This year Uber and Amazon have jumped into the food delivery industry with UberEATS and Amazon Restaurants. For Amazon, it’s just an extension of the grocery delivery service Amazon Fresh.
It’s no doubt that venture capitalists are not optimistic anymore about funding food delivery startups. Amazon and Uber’s advantages are not just related to brand and marketing.
The efficiency in logistics, the huge database of satisfied users and the fact that they might not be oriented at quick economic returns. Which is why if you’re trying to get your space in the crowded food delivery startup sector, you can’t. Better if you start pivoting now!
And not only  if you’re based in London. UberEATS is going global, planning to open in Amsterdam, Brussels, Dubai, Johannesburg and Stockholm before the end of the year.
The market is not for the little Davids anymore: Foodpanda has been acquired by Delivery Hero to synchronise the efforts in terms of customer acquisition and retention.
Competition is hard and it’s in our city already: better if you get ready.