Launch Day, Wedding Day

How a bride and her bridesmaid launched an app on the day of her wedding

Entrepreneurs become entrepreneurs because we are addicted to the adrenaline rush. In therapy, we’re told not to allow ourselves to conflate our personal identity with that of our companies, projects, products…

Why are entrepreneurs at heightened risk for this test of psychological objectivity? Why, in this demographic, is our sense of personal worth so deeply and so perilously tied to the same metrics that we report to our shareholders?

The answer is undisputedly human. Ideating, building, delivering. This is how we establish our sense of purpose and we crave that purposefulness 100% of the time. Every day is judgement day — our sense of purpose on the line — as we proactively consent to a career uniquely, publicly measured by quantitative and qualitative indicators of upward trajection.

Knowing this you can see that, for an entrepreneur, being tactfully busy is not a nuisance. It’s a life source.

I am about to share with you the most life-giving weekend of my 23 years.

My bridesmaid and cofounder, Lilly Mittenthal, and I launched our mobile app, maro — the parent companion for child development — the weekend of my wedding.

The truth is: we anticipated launching maro on October 31, 2020. T minus 6 days before I would tie the knot.

A quick note: To launch an iOS app, you must first pass a rigorous review process. This review process happens each time you submit an updated version of the app to the App Store. The first approval is usually the hardest — a milestone which we surpassed 3 months earlier with an approved beta. Each time you submit a build (a new version of the app) to the app store, you begin a new 24–48 hour review process with Apple’s review board.

As you can imagine, Apple has stringent requirements for app acceptance to ensure quality. Thus, it’s common to experience multiple “rejections” which include specific feedback / requirements for change that must be made in order to be accepted. To be competitive in this process, you MUST ITERATE QUICKLY.

And that we did.

Over the course of 9 days, we were rejected 7 times. Meaning, we received Apple’s feedback, made immediate changes based on this feedback and uploaded 6 unique builds in that time period. Turning around a new, fully uploaded, ready-for-approval build ~every 12 hours.

Responding to the Apple Review Board while doing rehearsal dinner makeup.

On November 6, the morning of my wedding, Apple called me.

Morning of wedding at the hair salon. 1 hour before receiving a call from Apple.

As I am opening the door to leave the hair salon — backpack, hat box, water bottle and who-knows-what-else in hand — I get a call from an unfamiliar number on my cell, a representative from the Apple review board.

“Hi Kenzie, is now a good time to speak?”

“Sure is.”

We spent 30 minutes on the phone pouring over the feedback we had received. I explained that we were confused/concerned as we felt that we more-than adequately aligned with Apple’s requirements. We were hesitant to push a new build without having a guarantee from her that there would be no further issue with going live on iOS.

After expressing the changes we’d made, she confirmed that we did, in fact, meet the requirements as stated by Apple and should move forward with our latest submission.

“Thank you! This is great news. It’s my wedding day and we’re relieved to hear this.”

On that note, she expedited our review.

On November 9, an email from Apple: “The status of your app is now Ready for Sale”

October 30-November 9 was a time of intense love and intense rejection. We are elated to share with you maro 2.0: a step in the right direction as we help parents navigate tough growing-up conversations with their K-8 kids around mental health, empathy, diversity and sex.

Parents, access child-facing and parent-facing bite-sized educational content and document your child’s mood and behavioral events on a day-to-day basis to support whole-child pediatric and mental health care efforts when it comes to early diagnosis of mental, emotional, behavioral, mood and learning disorders.

We don’t tell you how to parent or what values to parent with. We simply support you and your family’s values. Likewise, we do not diagnose. We simply support the efforts of mental health and pediatric care experts who do.

We can’t wait to share with you what is in our upcoming pipeline and invite you to be an early participant in our mission: download, check it out and share if you feel so compelled!

And, of course, one wedding photo.

Written by: Kenzie Butera Davis

Co-Founders of maro parents; you can reach us at www.meetmaro.com

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