With money we didn't have, my brother and I flew to San Diego to try out for the reality show Shark Tank. At the airport, our precious box of flowers was accidentally damaged by airport security during the x-ray process. The flowers survived, but the product packaging did not.
Upon arriving at the San Diego International Airport, we literally ran to our rental car and immediately hit a Target superstore in search of supplies that might save our packaging. After a three hour search, we finally walked out of the store with several bags of supplies we hoped would salvage our product (with more money we didn't have). We were able to make new packaging for our flowers out of recycled newspaper, burlap, paper bags, and ribbon. See below:
From there, we decided to drive past the location where tryouts were to be held the next day at 12:00pm. We told ourselves that this was so we could familiarize ourselves with our surroundings. As we arrived to the location, we could already see a line had started to form. On our application, it clearly stated that standing in line the night before was not necessary. As panic set in, we decided that we would go back to Target, purchase a camping chair, pillow, blanket, and treats so my brother could spend the night in line while I stayed at the hotel, to get my beauty rest of course.
The line at 2:00am:
In line, my brother met dozens of entrepreneurs who each had big hopes and dreams for their product. Even though their products were intimidating, our confidence did not waiver. We knew we had something good the sharks would love.
We were number 99 in line and our audition was among one of the first held that morning. We didn't walk into the audition with a prepared presentation. We gave our flowers to the producers, answered the questions she had, smiled, laughed with her, and told her why our product was Shark Tank worthy. We left the audition knowing in our hearts that we would advance to the next round. We stayed calm and acted natural.
Two weeks later, we got the phone call we had been waiting for....
We were contacted by the Shark Tank producer who informed us that we had made it to the next round. The next step was to make a five minute casting video/commercial explaining our product. We went all out with hair, make up, professional cameras, lighting, and editing.
The producers loved the video and again, we received news that we had advanced to the next round. This third round consisted of paperwork and very personal information regarding our finances and personal lives. Again, we passed this phase with flying colors. Unfortunately, that was the last round of good news that came. For no reason other than they didn't have room for us in the 2014 season, we were cut. Out of 33,000 businesses who auditioned, we made the top 200.
Since the Shark Tank tryout, we received an investment from a local investment firm, our sales have increased by over 800%, we have hired five employees, and the shop moved to a 4,000 sqft warehouse. We have quit our day jobs and we work for our company full time.
In Salt Lake City, on April 17th, 2015, we will try out for Shark Tank again. This time, we have the sales, more experience, and more motivation than ever to partner with one of the sharks. For more information on the 2015 Shark Tank auditions, visit the ABC.com Shark Tank website.
Interview we did with our local ABC news channel to talk about Shark Tank.
Late night business meetings at my house to prepare for the final phase of Shark Tank.