Friday Interview: Andrew Weaver
Could you please introduce yourself briefly?
Andrew Weaver, Co-Founder and CEO of LawyerFair. Investor, Mentor, Podcaster, Blogger, Cranfield MBA, Spanish Wife, Athletic Bilbao & Nottingham Forest Fan
How did you get the idea of starting your business?
I have been in business for 20+ years and used lawyers on a regular basis. I have always found the process frustrating – not only finding genuine legal experts but also in controlling costs.
I wanted to create an efficient, free service for business owners that allowed them to find the right lawyers, at the fairest price and for those lawyers to be accountable for their performance and customer service
What were the challenges you first faced when starting a business?
The challenges I faced are familiar to many start ups …. how to create traction and brand awareness with very little money and very small team … often just the founder.
You want to do everything yourself at the start, but that’s not sensible so which “experts” to trust and spend your time/money with.
Then, how to raise finance to get your idea properly off the ground.
How did you start developing your network of contacts for your business? Any tips of groups entrepreneurs, a future entrepreneur should attend?
Starting a business is amazing fun but very hard work and a key part of the initial months and years is building up a reputation in your market place and within key influencers in your sector.
This comes from attending the right networking events and always following up by doing, what you say you’re going to do. Trust and credibility is crucial in building up a network and hoping that network will recommend and/or help you. If you’re unreliable or a dreamer, then they won’t be interested.
What made you want to start your business in London?
It’s the greatest city in the world and a city state … whilst more expensive than many other start up locations, there is a fantastic start up ecosystem, lots of contacts, potential employees, and funding options.
Tell us what the future holds for your business.
LawyerFair has fantastic ambition to be the no.1 marketplace in the world for commercial legal services.
We want our free service to be available to as many business owners as possible so that can get the right legal advice at the fairest price and be in control on their lawyers, not the other way round.
We’re due to close our next round of funding from which we will be scaling quickly and starting to reach overseas.
It’s a perfect service for migrant entrepreneurs and we hope if they like our service, they might recommend us to colleagues in the UK and beyond.
What are some of the challenges you faced in setting up your business and the top 3 tips you give to those thinking of getting into your industry?
Online B2B is very challenging as business owners have to cope with a lot of online noise – how do you stand out from the crowd.
Understand your target customer, find out where they meet, get in front of their influencers, create fantastic content, over exceed expectations …