Springfield, MO

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Startup Corner: Chris Hunter,

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Minimally viable product …
Weekly revenue management coaching calls to help hotels get financially healthy.

Problem solving …
Using the revenue management system I’ve developed, I show hotels how to find the demand curve for their property, allowing them to raise rates during times of high demand to increase profit and to lower rates during times of low demand to increase occupancy.

Seed money …
My startup cost was about $1,200 for hiring an accountant to guide me through the registration process ($600), purchasing multiple URLs ($100), hiring a web developer to help me setup a basic site ($200), joining the Branson/Lakes Area Lodging Association ($200), and other smaller costs like business cards ($100).

Hurdles overcome …
Getting in front of hoteliers to show how I can benefit them. I made some videos about revenue management that answer some of the most common questions I get asked as a consultant, and I made them available for free on my site. Hoteliers from around the country and all over the world see my videos, then contact me to ask follow-up questions.

Next phase …
Three people in one week told me to take the five videos offline that explained how to build and use my revenue management system and turn my system into a software as a service licensing model.

Pivot …
Originally, I only had in-person meetings once a week with my clients. But since hoteliers are finding my videos on YouTube, I’m using a simple cellphone call and a free screen-sharing app called to host weekly coaching calls with out-of-state clients.

Biggest mistake …
I was in the middle of customizing my system to be used for a vacation rental resort but didn’t figure it out in time and lost that opportunity.

Worst advice …
If you want to be in business for yourself, just do it! Quit your job and start working for yourself. I didn’t follow this advice, and I’m glad. I just continued to build my business on the side for a couple of years, until the beginning of this year when I transitioned to full time.

Best advice …
There will be lean times, and times of great success. Just keep doing the work.

Food for thought …
The most valuable thing you have is your network. It’s like a will: If you don’t have it ready when you need it, then it’s already too late. Having a strong network in Branson that I’ve actively built for 10 years has really helped me fast-forward the growth of my business.


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