Two weeks ago, I announced that I was going raise 900,000USD for Sapiengraph. I am raising funds because I believe there is a serious opportunity for (your) data that will disappear from the public domain in the next ten years. Yes, I am referring to those very public Instagram photos that you are sharing indiscriminately. So far, I have managed to raise $0.
There is a plan
So far, I have sent out just two emails, and my first pitch will be on 20th August after my vacation. Only two emails because these were emails to past VCs who I have pitched to previously. Instead, I have been automating the menial aspect of VC research.
I purchased Crunchbase Pro a week and a half ago. And that gave me all the VC (Venture Capital) data that I needed to perform my investor research. These are the people and VC firms that I wanted to talk to:
- CEOs of companies that have exited in the past five years
- Angels and seed investors in San Francisco, Singapore, New York, Beijing, Malaysia, and Japan
- VCs of AI and Big Data companies
These target segments amounted to 7144 individuals. That's a large number, good.
Next, I need a way to contact these individuals. I have their Linkedin profile, but Linkedin is a rigged game. I have to drop into a fairer system -- Emails.
I have to find emails to 7144 individuals. Over the years, I have developed quite a robust system for finding emails. But for this simple exercise that should not take more than two weeks, I opted for a simple solution. Use Bing search and hunt for emails with this search query: "Steven Goh @nubela.co." Chances are if you posted your email anywhere on the interwebs, Bing will find it. I used Bing because Bing does rate-limit automated queries, and Bing's research results are explicit. Explicit in the sense that if are searching "abcdef", it will return results that contain "abcdef". Unlike Google, which has a knack for trying to guess what the meaning of "abcdef" is, which is not the most useful thing when hunting for email addresses.
The success rate of email hunting through this method is about 5-10%. I have not checked my database yet, but I reckon I have about 500 emails for outreach. With the email addresses, I will automate the cold emails with automated follow-ups with Yesware.
Yes, I have been automating cold approach.
A developer for every team
At Nubela, everything that is menial and requires no creativity is automated. We apply the mantra of "automating everything menial" thoroughly. I believe this is why our team remains lean but lethal.
PS: I will continue sharing my fund-raising updates, subscribe below to get notified for my next post!