At Patriot Software, we’re committed to providing accounting software and payroll that lets small business owners keep their time and money for what they love: running their business!
Our #PatriotSpotlight customer success stories celebrate and inspire U.S. small business owners across the country. For the December small business spotlight, we spoke with John Feghali, co-founder of Toaster Party Inc.
Toaster Party Inc creates toys that let children easily (and safely) make their own cartoon animation videos to share with their friends, family, and the world. Toaster Party prides itself on making products that are fun, educational, easy-to-use, and safe for children who are eager to experiment with new technology in this digital age.
Can you tell me a little bit about what you do and offer?
We help kids with what we create. We create a cartoon studio to let kids safely make their own videos. After they create the videos, they can publish them on platforms like YouTube and share them with family and friends via text message, e-mail, etc. With Toaster Party, we take something difficult and make it an easy process for children.
What made you decide to start Toaster Party?
When we started, we were looking for ways to replicate real-world experience of pet ownership through a digital app. In the early stages, we interviewed ~200 kids and asked what they did on devices, what they wanted to do, etc. Ninety percent of the kids wanted to be online and be YouTubers. The problem with this is that parents don’t want kids online 24/7 or on YouTube without supervision. Not to mention, to be successful on YouTube, you have to be willing to deal with a long process of shooting content, editing it, and sharing it online. For the kids who do post content, they typically don’t get the traction (e.g., views, likes, comments) they want, and they get discouraged.
Toaster Party helps kids be online in a safe environment. Allowing them to create their own cartoons easily allows them to post kid-friendly content without exposing who they are on the internet. Our product makes it simple to create cartoon content and share it online and with others.
What’s your favorite part of running your own business?
There are a lot of good parts. We’re in a very creative business. So, it’s great being able to work with highly creative and talented people. All of that talent gives us the ability to bring things into the world that we never imagined before.
What are some of the biggest challenges?
We’re a small business, so funding and fundraising to get to the next step has been the most difficult part. There’s a lot that needs to go in before you make money on products. It’s difficult in general to raise capital, but it’s especially harder with the current pandemic.
How does Patriot’s Full Service Payroll help you run your business?
Patriot’s Full Service Payroll makes it easier to handle a lot of our tasks. It makes running payroll a lot simpler, cheaper, and faster for us as a small business.
When it comes to your business, what are you most proud of?
We built something we didn’t think we could build. It’s a dream come true. Making something difficult (creating videos) something easy to do is a very difficult process for us. We’re creating the tools for someone who doesn’t know anything about it, so that can be challenging. But, it brings a lot of fulfillment.
What words of advice do you have for people hoping to start their own small business?
I would say love what you do. Really, really love what you do. It’s not enough to only be passionate. You’ve got to absolutely love what you do because it’s a rocky road. You have to love it in good times and bad times.
Connect with Toaster Party: