How to create your own start-up at Hyper Island

The creators of DidWe share their advice to anyone with a start-up dream!

A year ago, we were a group of digital media students at Hyper Island stuck in a Facedown addiction. We realised that while we were busy adding filters to photos or counting likes we were missing out on real-life interactions. We wanted to change this.

Today we are releasing DidWe in the AppStore and Google Play. This is our first try at creating something that will break the facedown isolation and make way for the new digital togetherness.

DidWe is a group photo app that you and your friends can use together to remember all the fun. But:

  • You can’t like pictures.
  • You can’t add filters.
  • You have to use it together with your friends, in-real time, as a team experience.
  • You have to wait to get access to your collaborative photo album (and get surprised).
  • It is for you and your friends eyes’ only.

Before we check-out, we want to share ten learnings to anyone with start-up dreams:

If you have a burning passion, just do it
Try it now when you are a Hyper student with lots of spare time. If in doubt, use actress and feminist Emma Watson’s personal manifesto: “If not me, who? If not now, when?”
This was the same advice we got from our sharp industry leader Pernille Raven: ”Just go for it”. She was right.

If you are serious, start an Inc. and hook up with a business incubator
Without Blekinge Business Incubator we would still be stuck in the dream phase of this adventure.

Early on, share your individual expectations and what you want out of the startup experience with the team
We didn’t do this immediately, but when we did, roles and goals finally became clearer.

Do lots of Team Development Sessions
Without Hyper Island’s TDS’, we would have thrown in the towel when the inevitable rocky times arrived.

From day one, do some user-testing by asking friends and family how they feel about your idea
If you have a need for a product or a service, others probably do too. We have been terrorising the people around us with never-ending questions.

Read up
If you want a good start on your journey, read The lean start-up, Lean in and Start with why. They reminded us of the importance of early user-testing, gender equality and to always communicate your vision.

Ask those that are more experienced than you for advice
Don’t be afraid to ask “silly” questions. We have looked like fools a gazillion times, but it is the ”silly" questions that have moved us forward.

When things are rough, have a fika, sing or dance
All work and no childish Youtube videos makes the DidWe team a very dull team.

How you do things might change
But take what you have learned and use it in your further endeavours towards your why – your vision. Our vision is three-fold. We want to: unite people, help them be more present, and give them a more heightened experience. If people like what we try to accomplish with DidWe, amazing. If it crashes and burns, too bad. But then we will at least have learned how we can move towards our vision in other, smarter, ways.

Try viewing failures like Sara Blakely, founder of Spanx
"Failure is not the outcome, failure is not trying. My father encouraged my brother and me to fail. I remember telling him, 'Dad, I tried out for this and that and I was horrible', and he would give me a high-five and say, 'Way to go'. If you fail, the worst that can happen is you become memorable.” Thanks for the reminder, Sara!

If DidWe sounds like something that would spice things up for you and your friends, try it and give us some good old Hyper feedback!

Love, Team DidWe; Lotta Glimstedt, Märta Nelson, Ben Alasuvanto and Bendik Ramm.