Published: March 18, 2020 By

Joe Sanchez is a 2015 MBA alumni from CU that has spent the last year as co-founder of the tech startup, Promogo. Positioned as “An App for Simplicity and Consistency”, Promogo works to provide software that joins everyone in branded events through one cohesive, user-friendly app. 

Joe Sanchez PromogoDuring his time at the Leeds School of Business, Joe was interested in all things surrounding entrepreneurship. He was even President of the Leeds Entrepreneur Alliance club. A lot of his interest was built around Boulder, CO and he began getting involved with startups in various industries around the community.

As a member of Venture Capital Investment Competition team, Joe got to work with Venture Capitalists. It was a unique experience where they worked directly with a venture capitalist, Jason Mendelson (also a adjunct Professor at the law school).

“It is such an inclusive town, so much entrepreneurship going on, and I took a track that really cultivated and added additional fuel to my interest around entrepreneurship and building my own company.”

“The Layover in Denver”

The idea for Promogo came about in what Joe calls “the layover in Denver.” While working in Operations and Logistics at Uber post graduation, a friend from high school approached him with an idea. The two found similarities between this idea and Uber in terms of building a technology platform around a really fragmented industry. His friend, Jeff saw a problem in the industry that didn’t have technology. At the time he was living in Las Vegas and had witnessed first hand the issues with accountability in the promotional marketing industry.

Market changes

Joe began working with Promogo as COO and “late edition co-founder,” as he calls himself, since jumping on the team in 2019 after moving to Austin, Texas. When he came onto this company, they saw themselves as a technology company that wanted to own the market, so they jumped into the industry because they created software better than anyone else. 

“As you get into the industry and learn the market, it dictates the direction you have to move. And it is on you as founder or early employee of a company to either listen to the market or continue down the path you think is right”

In June of 2019, Promogo shifted their path. They realized that this industry is very relation based, and after an additional 6 months of work, they created a software platform that provides brand ambassadors with a mobile based application to capture important data. Still fairly new to the market, Promogo launched out of beta this month.

From director of operations to co-founding his own tech startup

With only 5 internal employees, the Promogo team works collaboratively to utilize each person’s unique skills to get their tasks done. Joe found a great team to surround himself with. Through their network and some luck, they were able to bump shoulders with the right people. From Jeff with the idea, to Olek with the enterprise software experience, they knew they could get the proper foundation.

Joe’s role varies, as do all members of this team, but most recently he has been developing the insight reports and dashboards for the supplier side of the platform - a strong value proposition for Promogo's customers.

“If you're someone with a learning mindset, being part of a startup is perfect for that.”

As a director in the past, he had a large team to delegate and accomplish a variety of tasks. In a co-founder role, he is definitely finding himself back to being an independent contributor, at least in the early stages. But this was an opportunity for him to apply all of his skills to a variety of tasks.

Advice to current students

“Doing things with intention is important. The reason I say that, especially as an entrepreneur, is that there are so many people in this world and if you think you're the only one with that idea, the probability is that you're not. If you have the idea and then act with intention, you're the one who's gonna get it done. I think its most important for someone to not only coming up with the idea, but to see it through."