The founder of a new social media platform helping to discover musical talent says he couldn’t do it without the support of family, friends and, of course, music.

Photo of Akin Soetan

Akin Soetan, 28, is the founder of Tuneday, which aims to connect industry professionals with peers, record labels and fans.

Since starting out on the venture in 2017, Akin has ran a small valeting business and held 9-5 jobs to help support him on his journey, working in the evenings on his start-up after a full day at work as a project manager.

He says the hours sometimes take their toll, but support from those around him help him to push through to achieve his goals.

He said: “Working 9-5 and running a business is very challenging. Sometimes, you do lose motivation - especially when you’re not getting the results you’d like.

“I often come home from work then go straight out to networking events, looking for the people who can help. It can demoralise you if you can’t find the people you need to talk to.

“I’m in my third year now, so I’ve got to keep myself motivated. Virgin StartUp gave me a big help, but my family – especially my fiancé – is my biggest support system. She gives me the strength to keep going. My friends are good too, with lots of support on social media helping to spread the gospel about the business.

“In difficult times, music can help too. We listen to different types of music when we are feeling different things. I love to listen to music as part of my meditation techniques and it really helps me to escape. Escapism is good for a lot of people, and music allows you to go to wherever you need to be. I love music. I used to play the drums and have a few friends in the music industry, including my little brother, who’s an upcoming rap artist. It plays a big part in my life and has helped me get through a lot.”

Tuneday was boosted by a Start Up Loan from Virgin StartUp. “Virgin StartUp was recommended to me. I filled in an application form and got a mentor to help me,” Akin said. “Initially it helped me to refine my business plan, my cash forecasts and put together an achievable platform.”

But it was after the loan came through that Akin saw the real benefit, with the money being wisely used to help him to kickstart the business.

He added: “I started going along to different networking events and speaking to people and found a great product designer, who has come on board and helped us validate the product more. We’ve undertaken a feasibility study and asked a lot of questions around the product itself, helping to fine tune it and create a prototype. They’ve also helped with the brand and our social media marketing to help get our messages right. The money from Virgin StartUp has gone a long way.”

Akin’s main focus is now preparing for pre-seed round investment and collating as much feedback as possible to create the best product for an MVP.

To follow in Akin's footsteps, read more about how a Start Up Loan from Virgin StartUp could help propel your business to the next level.