Anyone who’s gone through the pain of planning an event – whether a birthday party or wedding – know how much work it takes to effectively execute such a soiree. From task tracking to budgeting, the devil is in the details and those details are often overlooked. To help simplify celebrations husband and wife duo, Brittany and Will Garman, created BashBLOK, a platform that ties together all the tasks of event planning into one consolidated place.
Hear how the co-founders make event planning a piece of cake and how they’re turning planning attitudes from I don’t to I do.
BashBLOK was founded by husband and wife team Brittany and Will Garman. Both are graduates of Auburn University and have unique skill sets that have lead to the early success of BashBLOK. Will has a degree in Information Systems management and has over 8 years experience in consulting and strategy. Brittany’s background is in interior design, social media and her family and friends refer to her as ‘The Event Planner.’ Brittany’s many years of planning events and frustration with current planning platforms lead to the creation of BashBLOK. She is also a recent graduate from the Atlanta Technology Angel’s LaunchPad2X program which targets early stage, female-founded companies.
BashBLOK makes event planning a piece of cake! So often, the joy of celebration is lost because of a breakdown in communication and information scattered over multiple outlets. Sharing ideas, task tracking, setting budgets and communicating with co-planners if finally consolidated in one place to save time, and stay organized. Our mission at BashBLOK is to put the fun back into planning and hosting events. From birthday parties to the black tie wedding, BashBLOK is the easiest and most collaborative way to manage all your events. May your next bash, be a smash!
What problem is BashBLOK solving?
Planning an event can take the enjoyment out of the celebration. Not only are there countless details to consider, but keeping track of the small stuff becomes a big deal. Life’s distractions and barriers hinder effective collaboration between those involved. Currently, there is not a free platform to organize and consolidate all variables (budgets, tasks, inspiration) for planning all types of event. Our target customers are using multiple applications, social media, and/or event coordinators to plan events. These range from spreadsheets, online platforms, good ole magazine clippings in a file folder, and emails. Planners are creating quite a mess of information over multiple outlets. Online platforms have provided some aspects of convenience however, social platforms such as Pinterest and Facebook have become a noisy experience and functionality is limited. With BashBLOK, we are streamlining and consolidating all event planning components into one application. We provide not only tools for communicating and sharing ideas, but also to manage budgets and tasks to help users stay organized and save time.
Describe the market/industry impact:
The number of people utilizing the world’s top social sites shows a paradigm shift in the way technology has been integrated into all aspects of everyday life. This familiarity and acceptance of technology demonstrates the natural extension and need for a social event planning site. Looking at the wedding industry, in particular, there is a growing trend with the use of mobile applications and social media during the planning process. On average, 45% of those preparing for a wedding are using a mobile application in attempts to better plan the event. However, due to limited functionality in solutions currently available, the adoption rates of these technologies have failed to move past the early adopters and reach the majority of customers. Only 17% of users are relying on current social platforms to plan non-wedding events. This trend creates a unique opportunity as BashBLOK is not limited to one type of event and can capture the majority of the event planning market. Our application is easily adaptable to suit any planning style, any event size and finally, all the details are in one place.
With BashBLOK, any information, products or photos aggregated from third party sites is added with intention. This means our users are actively planning an event so any information added to our site is relevant and with an intention to purchase. This gives us an opportunity to monetize sooner. We will focus on three main areas for monetizing.
1) Affiliate Marketing Program
As we gain customers, BashBLOK’s monetization model automatically kicks in and converts our users’ e-commerce purchases into revenue (automating traditional, affiliate marketing programs). Essentially, everything works behind the scenes and is driven by content that is curated by the user.
Targeted advertising would be based upon types of events a user is participating in or planning. This ensures that content is useful and relevant to a user thus giving us a better chance at capturing a sale.
BashBLOK Pro would be available to professional event planners to manage their new and existing customer base. These subscription-based accounts and would offer enhanced features and functionality for more detailed planning.
How’d you get the idea for BashBLOK?
BashBLOK was inspired by personal frustration with event planning. As someone who loves to entertain, I’ve planned fundraisers, showers, and even my very own wedding. During the planning process, I was confronted by the same problems time and time again. I was so tired of the endless email chains, text messages, and links that lead to nowhere and thought, there has to be a better way to plan a party. Thus, the idea of BashBLOK was born! Event planning should be just as exciting as the actual celebration and we are committed to providing a solution to better this process for our users. And, all for free!
Who are your competitors and how do you stand out?
We believe our biggest competitors are The Knot, Facebook, and Pinterest. Of these, The Knot is the only to offer tools to manage an event but caters only to weddings. The wedding industry is big business but there are other events that are equally as detailed and stressful to plan. BashBLOK is customizable and suited for planning all types of events. Our application is able to pull information from third party sites as well as local files and offer budgeting, task and communication tools to keep all aspects of event planning in one place.
What’s on deck for 2016?
With the growth of BashBLOK in the event planning market, we will continue to innovate in what we believe is the easiest and most collaborative way to plan and manage all events. We plan to release a mobile application later this year as well as add enhanced features to our web application to better serve our active growing user base. We truly have a passion for consumer solutions and are exploring possible product adjacencies. BashBLOK will be the first in a series of applications designed for personal project management.
How does ATL weave into your story?
After graduating from college, the allure of Atlanta was hard to ignore. The city is filled with immense opportunity and of course, a thriving startup market. We are thrilled to call Atlanta home and look forward to making our mark in the startup and tech communities.
Hiring? At present, we are content with our current staff and team of advisors but are always on the lookout for talent. We will gladly review submitted resumes as we will be looking to hire in the near future. (Post your open positions here and we can promote them in this piece and on social).