Startup stories: Myko AI

Welcome to Startup stories! In this series, we’ll interview some exciting startups from AI to Social to SaaS to find out what they’re working on and how they think about Marketing. First up, Trevor Lee from Myko.ai, a AI powered platform built to answer all of your Sales and Revenue questions in seconds. Here’s the interview!

What do you think about AI?

Trevor – AI is going to replace the pieces of your jobs that you hate, especially over the short run, like next five years or so. Most of the disruption is going to come from people starting to utilize AI to really make their jobs and parts of their life more beneficial. If you think about the kind of even where we are today, versus where we are in chat, PT came out to me, I use it for everything, right? It’s like a daily part of my workflow.

Most of the world is not like that, right? AI has not stolen all of these jobs yet. And so it’s going to be another technological shift in terms of how people work, where people work, what those jobs are like, and the types of jobs people have. But I’m optimistic about the ability to really help people spend less time doing a lot of that manual rote work that they frankly just don’t enjoy anyway.

Where did the idea for the platform come from?

Trevor – Yeah, so we actually had an old product in the market. It was in Excel add -in for quite some time. And in the summer of 2022, my co-founder and I saw all of these image-generation apps like Dolly coming out. And it became immediately clear to us that natural language analytics would be the future.

What does Myko.ai do?

Trevor – Yeah, that probably should have been the first intro. So we do conversational AI for sales and revenue data. So we plug in directly to your CRM, like Salesforce, and let people ask questions instead of going into Salesforce reporting, for example, and getting their data. So if you want to say, like, what’s our average sales cycle by lead source over the last two quarters?

You just type that into a text box. We go get the data, analyze it, and return it back to the user. So you don’t have to fumble around with dashboards or reports anymore.

How did you go about Marketing it?

Trevor – We actually built our own language model from scratch and released it two weeks before ChatGPT came out. So very lucky with the timing. Could not have done better from that regard as you all saw on X. Like lots of people were posting AI demos. We wound up going viral on a TikTok video actually that an influencer just like found us from, did a video on us, got like 400 ,000 views. It crashed our website at the time, massive amount of traffic.

Sounds like a bit of good fortune. Was it planned?

Trevor – The funny part was we got our app when we did our launch of the first natural language layer, we got listed in this newsletter, Ben’s Bytes, I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but it’s a popular AI newsletter. And the influencer just saw the link from that newsletter and did a video about us. We didn’t even know that there was a video and we couldn’t tell where the traffic was coming from because our app wasn’t actually linked in the video. So everyone was just Googling our product and then coming to our product from Google.

And what’s your main approach to sales and lead gen?

Trevor – Yeah, so we’re fortunate that we got a lot of inbound so that we’re still kind of like working our way through. And so setting up what that outbound looks like in those next steps exactly as you’ve identified, we’ve started doing some email. It hasn’t been as successful, I think, as we might have actually thought it would be. We’ve seen the sales professionals actually fairly reluctant to reply to cold email. And so we’ve been getting more targeted and thinking through.

And how did you do a VC round with Khosla Ventures?

Trevor – On the fundraising process…obviously, once we built our first AI product, my co -founder is a former Nvidia engineer. So he’s got pretty serious, true machine learning chops, which really helps our pitch of why we were building this product. So once we had the AI product in market, we started to have significantly more investor conversations. And Vinod’s chief of staff, Hassam, who actually is running a company, Archify now, reached out to us because one of his friends was using our product.

What does your team look like today?

Trevor – Yeah, we’ve got eight full time. It’s mostly engineers. So we have a pretty heavy technical team, multiple kind of self -driving engineers. So really like tackling the problem, technical first of you ask a question, we give you the right answer and make sure it doesn’t make something up or pull the wrong data. And so that’s why the team is mostly technical. And then we’ve got a product manager and a product designer as well to really make sure that user experience is seamless. So you get into the product.

How did you meet your co-founder?

Trevor – Yeah, so he was one of my classmates at Columbia. We I went on a leadership expedition as one does in business school where a couple of my classmates the whole trip, they’re like, you gotta meet Zeng. And so I started talking and we started kind of forming a relationship. Then we actually worked together in another startup he built that was automatically cut NBA player highlights. So basketball game ends. Every single box score event for a player would automatically get cut into a YouTube video. So we get really popular for international players. You want to see every single Luka Doncic play. It’s just now handling one YouTube video. So we worked on that together for a little while.

How important is branding to Myko.ai?

Trevor – I’m working on the branding. As we keep growing and as we kind of prove out the product market fit of the actual software, that’s where I think the branding becomes really important, especially cutting through all the noise of, especially a product like this, there’s a lot of sales tools. And so how do we stand out? How do we create that brand name recognition? It was very, very important.

What’s your vision in the long term?

Trevor – Yeah, I mean, I think I’ll take where you were going with it anyway. And we have a pretty strong thesis that AI isn’t going to necessarily replace people. AI is going to replace the pieces of your jobs that you hate, especially over the short run, like next five years or so. Most of the disruption is going to come from people starting to utilize AI to really make their jobs and parts of their life more beneficial. If you think about the kind of even where we are today, versus where we are in chat, PT came out to me, I use it for everything, right? It’s like a daily part of my workflow. Most of the world is not like that, right? Like AI has not stolen all of these jobs yet. And so it’s gonna be another kind of like technological shift in terms of how people work, where people work, what those jobs are like, the types of jobs people have.

Visit Myko.ai to find out more. Do tell us also who you’d like us to interview next!



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