NachoBirthday is a crowdfunding website where users can raise money for a good cause in lieu of receiving birthday presents. The Dallas-based company was launched by founder Ryan Ogbeide in the Spring of 2015.
Like most new online platforms, NachoBirthday has had challenges gaining initial traction, but seems to have had a big breakthrough recently after a TV celebrity started using the site. When Sean Lowe, a national celebrity (ABC’s The Bachelor from Season 17), started using the site to raise funds for a local charity, NachoBirthday started experiencing record website traffic and more than doubled its user base from 3,200 to 7,000.
The campaign started by the celebrity raised over $2,500 in 15 days, exceeding the campaign goal and garnering hundreds of comments. All of the proceeds will be going to the local charity, Micaela’s Army. As a result of the celebrity using the platform, NachoBirthday’s user base doubled in a period of three weeks and has had a record amount of comments and social shares due to all of the buzz. In addition to the funds, the local charity is also getting tons of exposure through social media because of the massive following of the celebrity.
So how does a relatively new startup end up getting a TV personality on board? Enter our local startup ecosystem. Ryan, the founder of NachoBirthday.com, has presented at several local startup community events this year including 1 Million Cups, Dallas New Tech, and Startup Marketing Hacks, and others. He says that without the feedback and connections he got from the local community, it would have been nearly impossible to connect the dots between the local charity, the celebrity, and NachoBirthday’s passionate community. While NachoBirthday is based at NoD Coworking, Ryan has also spent time at The DEC, The Grove, and Fort Work and credits those relationships to much of his success.