Why this DC founder is giving away her audiobook - Technical.ly DC

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Jul. 7, 2016 10:15 am

Why this DC founder is giving away her audiobook

Danielle Tate has partnered with incubators and accelerators around the world to distribute digital “copies” to the women they serve.

Danielle Tate and her book.

(Photo via Kickstarter)

Danielle Tate is really intent on helping female entrepreneurs the world over start and grow businesses. The founder of MissNowMrs.com, a web-based service for changing one’s name after marriage, started her business with very little in the way of traditional experience, so she knows it can be done. But yes, the learning curve was steep, and Tate wants to help make it less so for those just starting out.

This interest led Tate to write a book, titled Elegant Entrepreneur, which was released in January. The book details Tate’s own experiences as well as those of other prominent female entrepreneurs, including 1776 cofounder Donna Harris. It’s basically a guide to the stages of starting up — including evaluating an idea, dealing with competition, building a team and more.

Danielle Tate and Amal Al-Shammari at the 10,000 Women event. (Courtesy photo)

Danielle Tate (right) and Amal Al-Shammari at 10,000 Women. (Courtesy photo)

But shortly after the book’s launch, Tate realized that its very format might be prohibitive of a truly broad reach. Tate told Technical.ly that she was at a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women event in March, meeting women from all over the world, when this became clear.

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“Women were asking, ‘How do we get your book?’ and when I’d say that it’s on Amazon they’d say, ‘Oh, we don’t get that,'” she said.

What’s the purpose of writing a book if not to give it to those who need and want it, Tate wondered.

Tate decided an audiobook could be a way around this dilemma, and launched a Kickstarter campaign for enough cash to put it together. She raised just over $3,000, booked time in a recording studio and set to work. The new audio edition of her book is an MP3 hosted on an Amazon site like this and is easily playable on a bunch of difference devices.

Next, Tate set about the business of distribution. Essentially, she told Technical.ly, she and an intern search for female entrepreneur-focused incubators and accelerators around the world, cold email them and ask if they’d be interested. “The response has been great,” she said.

There are currently 11 such partners working with Tate to give the book to those who might benefit from it. These include the She Inspires Her Network, in Southern, Eastern and West Africa; Meridian International Center, which has a global reach; Connecting Founders in Thailand; Invest2Innovate in Pakistan; Jitahidi Group in Kenya; LUMS Center for Entrepreneurship, also in Pakistan; DzWit in Algeria; Injaz and Ice Cairo in Egypt; Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC) in Qatar; and Wayra in Peru.

Over time, she said, Tate hopes to cultivate relationships with these partners so that she can learn from the women they serve as well as those women learning from her and her work. A kind of international exchange of ideas and lessons in female entrepreneurship.

“I don’t think I’m going to save the world,” Tate told Technical.ly. “But maybe I can make some small changes that turn into bigger changes over time.”

Small but meaningful changes, she hopes — like giving women in Peru and Pakistan and Kenya and Egypt the gift of the knowledge she’s acquired since starting her own business.

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Tajha Chappellet-Lanier

Tajha Chappellet-Lanier was the lead reporter for Technical.ly DC. The California native previously worked for NPR and the editorial board at USA Today. She can talk travel plans all day, and has strong opinions on the best doughnut in D.C.

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