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Freshmen Founders

Author: Channing + Makenzie

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A high-level take on specific business topics for first time entrepreneurs. The hardest part is getting started, but Channing + Makenzie provide resources, anecdotes, and lessons learned to ease that process.
31 Episodes
2020 Recap

2020 Recap


We are THRILLED that 2020 is coming to an end. While it was extremely difficult at times we do believe we came out of this better both personally and professionally. The theme of EVA's 2020 was accelerated iteration. We had to change our model fast when the pandemic hit and it was not something we could have done without our team. In this episode we discuss how our company culture has improved, hiring/firing, and What 2021 holds for us.  
Now it's Makenzie's turn to be in the hot seat. Channing gets Makenzie to open up about who she is and what makes her tick. She discusses her strengths and weaknesses, her influences and interests, and how many bones she's broken. We love feedback!
In this episode Makenzie takes on the challenge of getting Channing to talk about herself. We thought it would be interesting to interview one another and see what questions we didn't already know the answers to. We learn a little more about Channing's way of thinking in personal and professional life. You can ask us questions, provide feedback, or just say hey at 
Warner Carpenter, our software developer, joins us on the podcast. We talk about how he pitched himself for a full time position when we weren't even hiring (and got it), and what it's like working for a startup. He discusses the similarities between music and code and how he transitioned into programming. You can reach us at
Running a company is hard enough without a pandemic, but when one hits things get tougher for every business. We've talked about our pivot and some challenges we've faced in the company but on this episode we get more personal. We talk about how we stay motivated, how we get out of a funk, and how important communication is within a team.
We discuss some of our most embarrassing moments as first time founders. We record in a new studio with a few new fun tools that add to the awkward moments. In this episode we are very candid and open up how we've grown. 
Gordon Droitcour pt. 2

Gordon Droitcour pt. 2


We check back in with Gordon and how his business is doing during the pandemic. Last time we talked we discussed him potentially partnering with another company, so he gives us an update on what happened there. We also discuss how the live music industry may look in the future. 
You know those days when everything feels like it's falling into place? We were grateful to have one, especially in these continued wild times, so we went more off script than ever. This episode is all about what our pandemic pivot has been like for our company and we also reflect on previous pivots made. It's been unnerving to build a business during this time, but there have been lessons learned and experiences made that we wanted to share with you!
The better the brand, the better the business...right? While a beautiful brand isn't the only thing that makes a business, it is a very important piece. A well thought out brand gives your customers confidence that you can do what you say you can, and our brand...was not cutting it. In this episode we discuss what exercises helped us prepare for the rebrand, the creative journey itself, and tips and tricks we learned from a top notch branding agency.
Our roles have changed a lot while building our company. Sometimes it was forced due to our business’s evolution, and at other times it was decided as we found a better path forward. We wanted to be open and honest about all of it. On this episode, we talk about becoming Co-CEOs together this year, and why we insist that our team members act as leaders alongside us as well.
Season 3 is here! We had to get creative and record this without our typical production resources due to the pandemic. It definitely makes this episode that much more candid on what we are all experiencing in the world today. In this episode, we talk about what it's like to have a pandemic hit your business from all sides (aka ours), how we have grown our business since last season, and how we are now repositioning for the future of events. You know what they say, when the going gets tough...add COVID-19!
And that's a wrap, season 2! In this final episode we answered questions that were submitted throughout the season via As always, please reach out if you have any further thoughts/questions or want to talk through pain points when growing a business.
We have found that one of the most exciting yet difficult parts of growing a business is determining what kind of partnerships actually make sense for your company. And how do you know if they are strategic and will complement your company? This episode is part 1 of Partnerships with Gordon Droitcour and how he began to think through this process for his business, Cour Design.More on Cour Design: "Put simply, we are dreamers and creatives with the technical and logistical backgrounds to pull off the impossible. We design for the big and small. We work with management teams to scale emerging artists to the big time and with in house infrastructure to handle design for the largest tours out there. Concert creative direction, lighting design, content, and music videos."
There is truly a method to the madness when it comes to executing sales goals and building a sales team. Not only are there metrics to base your goals off of, but also intrinsic motivators that are unique to each individual that's a part of your team. Chris Becker is an expert on these topics and we are excited for you to hear from him on this episode of Freshmen Founders.
Attention all creators: if you're wondering how to take the next steps in making your passion/creative outlet/hobby a full time business, this is the episode for you. Nathan Brown is an incredible artist that took all of his knowledge from previous career experiences and implemented these lessons into his full time business as a public artist. Nathan is commissioned and travels all over the world to share his mind opening murals and unique designs.To learn more about Nathan Brown, check out:
In this episode we discuss all things digital strategy (and what that actually even means) and how to effectively market your business as a brand.Michael has an impressive background in digital strategy for all different types of businesses, especially in the music industry which we love. He started in project management, moved to interactive marketing, did a lot of cool stuff in between, and is now overseeing his own company, Streaming Promotions - a music placement and streaming company.
This is the third episode on fundraising for your startup (part 1 and part 2 are in season 1). We dive into traditional capital options like utilizing a line of credit or a loan to grow your business, and why this might be more beneficial than initially working with investors.Brad Peterson is the Vice President of Music & Entertainment at Regions Bank and is a huge advocate for artists and entrepreneurs. Brad has changed the game for us in our business and we wanted you to hear directly from the source.
This episode is short and sweet. We learned the hard way on a few finer business details that are need to know, so we wanted to share them with you. Some would say it's boring stuff, we agree, but at least try to make it semi fun.
This episode of Freshmen Founders is all about expanding your business. Clint Smith, former co founder and CEO of Emma, joins us and shares how he and his team strategically took their company from start to acquisition. 
Freshmen Founders hears from the VP of operations at, Tyler Newkirk, on how hires well for their clients and for their own business. There is so much that goes into hiring the best candidates for your team, and we learn about what to pay extra attention to in this episode.What's began as a way to connect open source software developers with awesome gigs. Today, they support thousands of freelance engineers in their quest to provide immense value to teams.
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