What it's Like to Be on Shark Tank - lollaland

What it's Like to Be on Shark Tank

It's been 24 hours since our [Lollacup] pitch aired on Shark Tank last night, and my heart and mind have not stopped racing.  So much to do and share.  How we went from a simple idea for a new straw sippy cup to landing Mark Cuban and Robert Herjavec as business partners is baffling.

I guess I'll begin by sharing how Mark and I tuned in last night.  The most responsible thing to do would have been to watch the Shark Tank episode at home, with phone in-hand and computers fired up to attend to any issues that may arise.  BUT we thought about all the people who were in involved in bringing this straw-sippy-cup-project to fruition, and we just had to get everyone together and relish in the moment.  How often does one have an idea, take it to market, get on national TV, and land a business deal with Mark Cuban and Robert Herjavec?  You only live once, so we just had to go the viewing-party-route.  I promise we will respond to your voicemails and emails soon.

Between family, the friends we see regularly, and people who've directly worked on lollacup, we had about 75 people we needed to host.  Our home/office was not an option with those numbers, so Mark and I had to get creative in thinking about how to plan a Shark Tank Viewing Party on a budget.  Mark suggested watching it at our old high school, where we met and started dating.  I thought it was a long-shot, but we asked the administration, and the school was gracious enough to let us use the lunch area for dinner and drinks and the auditorium to watch the show.  It was so nostalgic and special to be on campus for this event.  Some of our teachers even joined us!

Thank you Phil Webb and Fleetwood-Fibre for the "card." We have the BEST vendors.

Guests began to trickle in around 7 pm, and they all tried their best to stay off of social media so as not to know the outcome.  We were last into the "tank," so by 8:40 p.m. everyone was pumped for our appearance - our bellies were full and we had all had a few glasses of wine.

Finally, around 7:45 p.m. the commercial break ended and our friends were cheering [loudly] as we were introduced as "next into the Shark Tank."  I don't know about you, but every time I hear my own voice on a recording, I cringe.  Can you imagine how I felt watching my every mannerism on national TV?

During the taping, Mark and I stood in front of those sharks for well over an hour, and what you saw on Friday was edited down to less than 15 minutes.  I must say that the show did a great job with the editing . . . everything you saw was a concise representation of how we remember it all going down.  Aside from childbirth, it was the most intense and stressful hour+ of my life.  I am so proud we survived and so happy Mark and I did it together.

So to tell you "what it's like to be on Shark Tank" - SIMPLY AMAZING!  For the most part, we have had people go out of their way to send kind words and well-wishes our way via Facebook, Twitter, email, blogs, and even phone calls.  This whole experience is such a huge motivator.  We know how expensive parenting is: the cost of diapers alone is astounding.  Thank you all for supporting Lollacup as we grow.

Here are some of my favorite tweets from the sharks:

Robert HerjavecRobert Herjavec ‏ @robertherjavec #sharktank - i LOVE this guy - " I only want to play with winners " - LOVE IT

#sharktank - wow - it took these two amazing pitchers to get me to work with @mcuban

Mark CubanMark Cuban ‏ @mcuban I really liked them. I'm not usually that nice to robert. I felt bad for him ;-).

Daymond JohnDaymond John ‏ @TheSharkDaymond such cute kids!!! #sharktank
will robert and Mark finally work together!! #sharktank

Lori GreinerLori Greiner ‏ @LoriGreiner Love these two!! Their passion in #SharkTank is undeniable.




Chad Riddersen
Chad Riddersen

Author



46 Responses

lollacup
lollacup

July 02, 2015

I don’t think it will be for a while – We are such a new company. Believe me, we’ll try and make it happen soon.

Crystal
Crystal

July 02, 2015

I love your cup ordered two last night :)

Jeromy
Jeromy

July 02, 2015

Now that the product has funding, when will we see the $9.99 price tag? Soon, I hope?

Jason
Jason

July 02, 2015

I agree with the pervious comment. Stick to your brand, show intgrity to it, and remain in the USA. It is worth the extra money. I ordered two right after the show.

Jessica Krenner
Jessica Krenner

July 02, 2015

I would like to say that I am so glad you stuck to your guns and did not go the overseas route. We own our own farm and have very little money, but we are planning on buying your cup! It is a great idea and it’s about time something like this was designed. I don’t know how many cups we have bought that say “Spill proof,” when really they aren’t and then you have to deal with the valve that you really can’t clean! Congratulations and we LOVE your product!!!!!

Sarah
Sarah

July 02, 2015

I agree 100% and have also bought 1 cup that will be washed repeatedly! I love that this company supports Americans! With so many other companies compromising, this new little Lollacup company has been a breath of fresh air! Thank you x 1,000!!!

miafaery
miafaery

July 02, 2015

Just want to add my 2 cents to the above comment…I know that $18 for a cup is out of many people’s price range, but I think it’s worth it to have it be a little more expensive and have it be non-toxic. If it’s made over-seas, that’s not a guarantee. Part of the appeal, to me, of the Lollacup is that it’s non-toxic and made in the USA. I feel like by changing that, you’re changing the value of the company and the brand that you guys are working hard to create. My husband and I are both educators and have no money leftover at the end of the month, but I found it worth it to purchase a Lollacup. She is only going to have one, but it’s better than having two inferior/toxic other cups that don’t work as well. I can wash it throughout the day. ;) I just wanted to put a voice out there from people who don’t have a ton of money, but still admire what you’re doing and encourage you to charge whatever you need to to keep it the way it is. I know it’s going to be a great success! Cheers!

lollacup
lollacup

July 02, 2015

Thanks Crystal!

Kathleen DeCosmo (@katiesheadesign)
Kathleen DeCosmo (@katiesheadesign)

July 02, 2015

Congratulations! Just watched your pitch and both of you did a grand job! Your product presents as well thought out and user friendly. I will buy your product when I am in need of a gift and I will recommend it also. I am a new viewer to Shark Tank since I myself have been told that I should pitch my products and I am learning so much with each episode. Good Luck!!!

Katie Shea Design Roses of Distinction
Katie Shea Design Roses of Distinction

July 02, 2015

Congratulations! Just watched your pitch and both of you did a grand job! Your product presents as well thought out and user friendly. I will buy your product when I am in need of a gift and I will recommend it also. I am a new viewer to Shark Tank since I myself have been told that I should pitch my products and I am learning so much with each episode. Good Luck!!!

Rachel Blaufeld
Rachel Blaufeld

July 02, 2015

loved your presentation and congrats on your deal — you did what thousands of others want to do!

Court Caesar Smith
Court Caesar Smith

July 02, 2015

God bless you! i wish you tremendous success!

Anari Sengbe
Anari Sengbe

July 02, 2015

Don’t know why you passed up on the 30% Damon offered. Seems to make more sense.

sewpickle
sewpickle

July 02, 2015

My husband and I watched the episode last night. We both agree that as parents are more likely to buy a baby/child product made in the U.S. or Europe. We bought one of you cups last night and we are excited to get it. Good luck! (And I do hope that the price point goes by the time our second child needs them! We are due in October!)

sewpickle
sewpickle

July 02, 2015

My husband and I watched the episode last night. We both agree that as parents were are more likely to buy something manufactured in the U.S. or Europe. We ordered one of you cups last night, we are excited to try it!

Alcohol on school grounds, not good.
Alcohol on school grounds, not good.

July 02, 2015

Not a good idea to mention presence of alcohol and teachers both present on school property. That is grounds for school to received federal funding and prosecution of the teachers.

Do Bamboo (@DoBamboo)
Do Bamboo (@DoBamboo)

July 02, 2015

You’re right. Why can’t Lollacup be a premium brand? Made in the USA speaks volumes about a brand in this category and helps position it in the consumer’s mind. I’d stamp “USA Made” right on the cup for everyone to see. Have you ever noticed the brand of water bottle that is Swiss made? How well do you think that brand is positioned?

Bob
Bob

July 02, 2015

Love this product. Can’t wait to get it. The tv froze when Mark gave 24 seconds so we don’t know what happened how did Robert and Mark get together on this one?

mangkaru (@mangkaru)
mangkaru (@mangkaru)

July 02, 2015

Whats the guarantee it’s non-toxic just because you made it in US? I think you just need to find the right manufacturer who could do the same quality for less regardless of the location.

Michelle
Michelle

July 02, 2015

AGREED!!

Tony
Tony

July 02, 2015

Please keep it “made in USA” That was one of the first things I liked about this. Good Luck

KIM
KIM

July 02, 2015

There wasnt any students there drinking and they were simply using a building…Its not like it was during school hours! Get a grip

Lisa
Lisa

July 02, 2015

I really dislike the chicken design. To me it looks cheap and something produced in China & sold in 99cent stores. I hope you’ll come out with a design worthy of the $18 pricetag. Good luck!

Ashley Massengill
Ashley Massengill

July 02, 2015

I watched shark tank on hulu last night and immediatly ordered one, I cant wait

Kate
Kate

July 02, 2015

We watched Shark Tank last night and we were so happy for you guys! I own Icky Baby, a children’s gift/accessories business and it can be a tough business so I am always cheering for the new companies. Enjoy the ride!

Alcohol on school grounds, not good.
Alcohol on school grounds, not good.

July 02, 2015

grounds for school to Lose federal funding.

dianaliang
dianaliang

July 02, 2015

I can’t wait to get my cups in the mail!!! Thank you for coming up with such a thoughtful product.

Kim
Kim

July 02, 2015

You guys are such great people! Wishing you the very best!!!!!! :)

lollacup
lollacup

July 02, 2015

Thanks :) We really do LOVE our sales reps and Mark and Robert didn’t require us to get out of it, so we are just letting the contract run out, but kind of reluctantly b/c they are so nice to work with.

Kim
Kim

July 02, 2015

Love it! Did you get out of your sales agent contract??? :)

miamomia
miamomia

July 02, 2015

My mom saw your product on Shark Tank and told me to watch on Hulu. I love the product. It’s so cute and a great concept. I love even more that you’re committed to keeping it in the USA. Not just because of the quality of materials but also because you’re supporting the economy. I would pay more for that. When my little one gets old enough for straw sippees in few months we will be getting a Lollacup.

Jared
Jared

July 02, 2015

I agree with this 100%! With 2 sets of boy/girl twins (6 years old and 9-months old), we bought 2-3 different types of water bottles with straws, and 2-3 sippy cups, each in different colors – we have about 10 different ones still in the cupboard. This one looks better than any of those – we may be replacing our old ones with this one!

I knew that would get interest as soon as I saw the weighted straw – I believe this will be one of the more successful products featured on the show (especially in the long term once the price point can come down to the $12 range).

You acquitted yourselves quite well – I especially loved the “I only want to play with winners” and the “I have exclusivity” comments!

Leslie
Leslie

July 02, 2015

Great product, and such a wonderful idea! The weighted straw was absolutely genius, I look forward to receiving mine soon!

Beth
Beth

July 02, 2015

Agreed. I think Mark Cuban understood this. Its not that every product made in China is unsafe, but there is a perception, based on the past few years news, that there could be unknown risk. And so, of all products, the one that goes into your child’s mouth on a daily basis is the product on which to spend a few extra dollars!

lollacup
lollacup

July 02, 2015

You bring up a good point that our friends have even asked us about. First, keep in mind that 1.5 hours of negotiations were edited down to 15 minutes. The sharks were all talking over one another and things were very heated. Mark was in the middle of a conversation with Robert H. so we were focused on him. Daymond literally shouted his 30% offer during several other exchanges between us and sharks, and we had ZERO time to process it all. By the time we realized what was going on, he had already said, “I’m out!” While we would’ve loved to work with him, we took what we could. For a moment it felt like everything was going downhill…

Sarah
Sarah

July 02, 2015

It’s not just the non-toxic factor. Supporting our own economy is a huge deal. Wal Mart and Target already support China and Iraq and Afghanistan and Japan ect. When we check the labels on most of the items that are sold at these major retailers, very few are made in the USA and support our communities. Just FYI _

zobeida
zobeida

July 02, 2015

Bought it too! Better safe then toxic! Will pay whatever for the safety of my son. Seriously people pay more money then this for eating out at a fast food restaurant!

Nikki Garner
Nikki Garner

July 02, 2015

I just have to say that I am one of those moms who likes to save every penny I can when I buy things. Buying for 4 children isn’t an easy (or cheap) task. That being said, I was shocked at the price also until I started thinking about HOW MANY sippy cups that I’ve bought in the past. My children go through sippy cups like they go through toys. Either most of them leak, get cracked, broken, we lose pieces to them or they just don’t like them. I have probably spent 3 times that much for EACH child on sippy cups!! A lot of people don’t realize that in order to save money, you have to spend money on quality items. That’s why a lot of the items you purchase in the dollar store fall apart. By the time you have repurchased that same dollar store item over and over again, you could have bought the high quality item and spent less. So I am very happy to have ordered one of your lollacups and if we love them as much I hope we will then I will be back for another to have as a back-up. I am also extremely thankful for a company that is USA made and I love not having to worry if the product is safe for my children. Thank you for having the courage and determination to go to the Shark Tank show. I am so excited to try your product and be a loyal customer! I wish you lots of luck with all of your endeavors :) (crossing my fingers for a pink cup in the future)

yosephvera
yosephvera

July 02, 2015

keep up the good work

lollaland
lollaland

July 02, 2015

Thank you for the comment. We have a few hospital gift shops carrying it now, but that’s definitely an area we need to expand into more. Congratulations, in advance, on becoming a grandma!

grandma pasagne (lasagne)
grandma pasagne (lasagne)

July 02, 2015

I do not watch much tv anymore,however I always try to catch the “Sharks” when I can.I was so happy to see the segment tonight & my newest grandson who will arrive in March is going to have a lollacup! Too bad you are only marketing in the “rich areas”.Perhaps you could contact the many,many hospitals and have them put in the gift shops for “a new arrival gift”?

Shattered-Earth
Shattered-Earth

July 02, 2015

I’m so behind on shark tank, i just watched it last night. Not only do you have a great product with a great aesthetic it’s always great to see more Asian entrepreneurs in the media! you guys did great, and to be honest $18 isn’t much for something you will probably only buy once per kid since they aren’t something you’re just going to throw away!

Ellie
Ellie

July 02, 2015

was this an open casting call and they put you on TV or was it the actual show??

How to Get Your Business or Product on to ABC’s Shark Tank - Just Elementary, Inc. | Just Elementary, Inc.
How to Get Your Business or Product on to ABC’s Shark Tank - Just Elementary, Inc. | Just Elementary, Inc.

July 02, 2015

[…] Be prepared in advance of showing up at an open Casting Call as the founders of Lollacup will tell you in their blog entry about their experience at a Shark Tank Open Casting event. […]

Bunn Salarzon
Bunn Salarzon

July 02, 2015

*CONGRATS (oops!)

Bunn Salarzon
Bunn Salarzon

July 02, 2015

I don’t even know you guys on a personal level, but I’m truly HAPPY for this exciting new chapter in your lives! CONRATS!!

Leave a comment