Hyperscaling Hopin: An early team member’s story

I just celebrated my two-year anniversary at Hopin, having joined the company when it was just a few months old and in beta — pre-revenue, pre-funding, no full-time employees. Today, Hopin is over 800 employees and closed a $450 million Series D funding, having raised $1 billion to date.

I thought now would be a good time to sit down and reflect on the journey thus far and distill some of the stories and experiences into helpful lessons and takeaways.

Perhaps the best place to start is the beginning, as I get asked a lot about how I became one…

On the Entrepreneur’s Handbook Show, a video podcast on Medium

Episode 2: Sarah Downey

Sarah A. Downey is an operating partner at Accomplice VC, an angel investor, and the founder of an upcoming lifestyle app (currently in stealth).

She is also one of my new favorite human beings. She has a magnetic energy, a sharp wit, and a deep wealth of knowledge about investing and startups.

This conversation was plumb fun. Here’s the video:

An outline of the topics we discussed

  • 1:15 Thoughts on Medium
  • 3:10 Writing process
  • 5:00 The “stealth lifestyle company” Sarah’s building
  • 17:53 Self-censorship: How to balance speaking your mind without causing trouble
  • 21:06 How Sarah made the jump from Director of Community to VC partner
  • 22:09…

Only on Medium

Six years ago, I founded Entrepreneur’s Handbook when Medium first opened its doors.

The publication’s mission was, and still remains — to help entrepreneurs succeed.

It’s simple, I know, but the secret sauce that has really guided the publication’s editorial direction over the years is the formula:

Inspirational stories plus practical takeaways.

Again, simple. But it means every story needs to have a personal point of view — entrepreneurs being genuine and real about their successes and failures. …

We were six people this time one year ago. No revenue. Now we’re 300 people, profitable, and just made a $250 million acquisition.

My journey with Hopin began in December 2018. I interviewed the community builder David Markovich for an article and he insisted he introduce me to a London-based founder called Johnny Bourfarhat. He was working on an online events company — then known as “Hopiin” — with a whole new way to host online events. Over the course of 2019, we got to know each other remotely as I was across the pond in Virginia. I ran one of Hopin’s first major events through my Medium publication Entrepreneur’s Handbook.

My first event on Hopin was the easiest yet most valuable initiative…

How to create interactive online events with a stage, sessions, networking, expos, chats, expos and more, using Hopin

Hi, there —

We’re getting a lot of demand right now so I wanted to put together a quick all-in-one resource to help new users get started organizing awesome online events on Hopin. This is originally from the Hopin blog but wanted to share here on Medium as well. Cheers.

Cofounder, Hopin

Below you’ll find videos, docs, and links that will help you learn and master the Hopin platform.

If this is your first time hearing about Hopin, here’s a 90-second overview video:

Simply sharing another article or video isn’t enough anymore

If you have a brand — any kind of brand at all — you probably publish content.

If you publish content, people probably (hopefully) consume it: subscribers, followers, viewers, or readers. Ideally, they’re your customers.

This swath of people who likes your stuff, supports your brand, buys your products, hires your team, donates to your cause, and so on — this is your community.

Every brand has a community

After a marketer identifies their community, big or small, the next question is: How do we keep our community engaged?

This is where a lot of companies can get stuck.

Many believe the answer is: produce…

Here’s the best of Entrepreneur’s Handbook for you.

  • If you’re working on negotiating a deal that is $10,000 — $10,000,000, make sure you have a strong Master Services Agreement (MSA) in place. This story from the experts at LegalZoom covers the critical basics of an MSA that every entrepreneur should know.
  • Million-dollar ideas had to come from somewhere, right? Here’s a study of 100 multi-million dollar tech startups and how the founders came up with the initial idea for their business.
  • If you’re an entrepreneur, one of the toughest choices you have to make is when to go “all-in” —…

The story of a founder and co-founder who met remotely and ended up launching a startup

Starting a business with someone is always an arduous process. There are contracts. There are differences in personal values and backgrounds. There are questions of trust, personality clashes, and sacrifices that have to be made.

But starting a business with someone you’ve never actually shaken hands with changes the game completely.

Given our virtually unlimited ability to meet people around the world in today’s global and tech-powered economy, it’s becoming less and less uncommon that two people in two different countries can come together and launch a business together.

Launching a business is different from remote hiring and contracting, which…

Hello there,

Happy Christmas Week. I hope your year is wrapping up nicely.

Here’s thanks for a great 2019 and cheers to a brilliant 2020.

May these stories enchant you as much as they did me.

All the best,

Dave Schools
Editor, Entrepreneur’s Handbook

⏱ The two-minute read

☕️ The morning cup of coffee read

😤 The good kick in the bottom read

🤳 The work on me day read

♟ The MBA in an article read

Skip the stockbrokers and use the “Knowledge Advantage” principle instead.

When Mark Cuban, worth $4.1 billion today (2019), was in his early twenties, he barely made enough money to pay rent.

“I remember being 24-years-old, living in Dallas in a three-bedroom apartment with five other friends,” wrote Cuban in 2007 on his personal website.

“I didn’t have my own bedroom. I slept on the couch or floor depending on what time I got home. I had no closet. Instead I had a pile that everyone knew was mine. …

Dave Schools

#2 at Hopin. Bylines in CNBC, BI, Inc., Trends, Axios. Creator of https://mediumwritingcourse.com and Party Qs app.

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