Small Business Spotlight of the Week: DormStormer

There are those who think and those who do.  Current University of Southern California students Adam Gausepohl and Bryant Laitipaya definitely fall into the latter category.

As college room mates and fraternity brothers, they both knew they wanted to eventually start a business, but like many entrepreneurs, struggled to find an idea they were both equally confident in.  Finally, frustrated with the lack of flash sales websites that cared about what college kids need, they came up with DormStormer.

DormStormer takes extra inventory from top brands and sells it to students at around 50% off.  These sales take place in 72 hour events.  In order to buy off of DormStormer, a person has to have a .edu email address, making it exclusive to the coveted and valuable 18 – 25 demographic.

Adam took the time to answer a few questions I had regarding DormStormer and using crowdSPRING to help them develop a website:

1.  How did you get things designed before crowdSPRING? Or if this is your first project, what other options were you considering?

Before crowdSPRING, we tried to design our own website on Wix. Wix is a very easy to use website that allows you to create your own custom flash site. We found it easy to start making something that looked pretty good, but it was hard to customize it to the point that we needed to. Also, flash sites take longer to load and we did not want this problem for our customers who may have slower connections.

2. Why in the world did you decide to use crowdSPRING?

We decided to use crowdSPRING because it was a relatively cheap option to obtain high quality results. We are extremely pleased with the outcome of our competition, and the designer emadz has provided us with the exact type of website we were looking for. We browsed crowdSPRING’s competitors, but decided to choose crowdSPRING as we thought we could obtain the highest results. Also, we loved how much information crowdSPRING requested of us, as we thought this would give the creatives the best possible chance at fully understanding what we were looking for.

3. What’s the single best small biz resource that you’ve found (magazine, website, blog, etc.)?

Besides crowdSPRING, I would have to say sites like where you can outsource things such as programming for a very low price. There are people out there who want to work for you and you do not need to pay thousands of dollars.

4.  If your best friend told you they were going to start a business, what’s the ONE piece of advice you’d give them?

My one piece of advice I would give a friend who is starting a business is to fully commit and do it. Being in the Lloyd Greif Entrepreneurship program at USC, I see many people talk about their business ideas, but not nearly as many who actively try to make them a reality.

5.  What’s the best part about starting your own company?

The best part about starting my own company is knowing that I am taking the initiative and doing everything I can. I hated the feeling of being stagnant and dwelling on my ideas. It brings me great excitement and a feeling of pride that money alone cannot provide.

DormStormer’s call for an uncoded web design received 44 entries and was awarded to emadz.