ViewStub: A solution ready-made for social distancing
Necessity is the mother of invention. And a global pandemic spawns a whole lot of necessity really fast.
Before social distancing was a familiar phrase, much less a universal necessity, StarterStudio Seed Stage grad Spencer Elliott’s company, ViewStub, was offering a technology perfectly designed for it.
A software as a service (Saas) solution for event producers of all kinds, ViewStub is an event platform and ticketing service that helps connect virtual or in-person attendees to performances, events, speakers, and experiences. The business model is based on a share of revenue, with no upfront costs.
“This is a company that’s going to last in this recession era, and that has spurred investment interest,” Elliott said.
Now that mass gatherings have been curtailed, ViewStub’s ability to handle live streaming, ticket sales and event merchandising for remote viewers is a ready-made solution for those whose in-person events have been forced to cancel but whose audience is still eager for their content.
“People have become very creative in these times, and our platform is very flexible, so it can be used in multiple different ways for streaming or podcasting or for any other type of creative content,” Elliott said.
The platform works for entertainment, sports, continuing education and even nonprofit fundraising, as well as conferences and other live events.
The early-stage company is ramping up rapidly to help artists, professional associations and others keep revenue flowing through virtual performances and events. In the first quarter of 2020, ViewStub grew from eight to more than a dozen employees, and it has more positions posted.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic, Elliott has been hearing from a lot of musicians who are looking to market studio sessions or recordings of past performances online after having their tours screech to a halt.
“On ViewStub they can do free music, donation-based, subscription-based, pay-per-view, or in-person event streaming to a virtual audience,” he said.
Elliott is focused on building relationships and long-term success during the crisis.
“I’ve been fortunate to develop partnerships with other event-industry tech leaders to have referral relationships where they’re able to bring their customer base over to ours, and we also send our new customers to their services,” he said.
Among those are Oviedo-based Engineerica Systems Inc., whose Conference Tracker system works with ViewStub to provide a full-service event management, marketing and video streaming platform. ViewStub is also partnering with event listing and promotion companies Evvnt and Evensi.
“We’ve been able to develop a network of close to a million customers that way in the last two weeks,” Elliot said. “Meanwhile, we’ve made a lot of improvements to our software to handle the scaling. Our developer has been hard at work making sure we’re able to help our customers. We’re looking at a new pricing structure that can help our customers in the long run as well.”
Elliott is looking beyond the pandemic to the future of the industry.
“As companies are unfortunately experiencing layoffs and have to downsize, there is opportunity for consolidation and partnerships. One thing that has come out of this is new customers and new partners and new relationships,” he said.
“I think the market will change, but the event industry will change dramatically after this. We’re really looking at what is on the other side. As long as people can stay optimistic, we can see a quick rebound and transformation, or evolution.”
That forward-thinking approach is one of the takeaways from Elliott’s time at StarterStudio.
“This is all part of our journey,” he said. “StarterStudio is part of our journey with the Seed Fund, the mentors, and everything they did with the accelerator that has been part of our history. We’re excited to continue to put those lessons to good use.”
Looking to scale your startup as well? Apply to our Seed Stage accelerator! Applications close March 27th, 2020 at 11:59PM.