4 Lessons Learned From My Startup — SnoHassle

Jay Mulakala
3 min readAug 27, 2018

SnoHassle was a project that a friend and I took on to solve a common problem on campus — bike damage and theft over winter break. We noticed that many students leave their bikes out in the cold and in the open over winter break, often resulting in theft of the bike or damage.

SnoHassle allowed students to protect their bikes over winter break by transporting and storing their bikes in a secure facility. After a successful launch, I’ve come to learn a few important things about business and marketing. These techniques can be applied to any business venture.

1. Create Scarcity

Create the impression of scarcity among your offerings. Potential clients are more inclined to purchase a product or service at that instant if they feel that there is a limited quantity available or if you’re going to be sold out. This can be achieved through emphasizing the rarity of your service, or by simply offering limited quantities of products or services. At SnoHassle, we did this by offering discounts during a limited period, and only offering a certain number of registrations at different price points. This allowed us to rack up dollars early on to validate our business model.

2. Limit Options

When a potential client has to look through several products or several services, they experience “decision paralysis”, which restricts their ability to make a decision. When possible, offer limited products. If you have several products or services, highlight one that offers the best value for the client, allowing them to make a decision quickly. At SnoHassle, we offered 3 different options for our customers and differing service levels and price points. We highlighted our middle option as the most popular. This mitigated decision anxiety by our customers and lead them to a sale quickly.

3. Offer Speed or Convenience

People today want everything quick and as soon as possible. Most people are willing to pay extra to get that convenience or speed. By promising an “instant download” or “super fast shipping” your client is much more inclined to be motivated by getting something quickly. SnoHassle provided convenience to students with a specific problem. Allowing them to ensure their bike is protected without ever moving their bike.

4. Be Professional!!!

This applies to everything you do regarding your business and interacting with clients. When contacting your clients, address them professionally and acknowledge their concerns quickly. Apply this in any form of communication, with your clients, and within your company. Maintain a clean a website, and stay uniform in your design. These little steps play a large role when it comes to attracting clients and ensuring you retain them!

Find out more about SnoHassle and my other successes and failures and https://jaymulakala.com/snohassle-2/.

What tips do you have for someone interested in starting their own company? Comment below.



Jay Mulakala

Product > Sales > Entrepreneurship > Self-Proclaimed Drone-Nut