Sramana Mitra: However, right now it’s very inadequate. We only actually do content marketing. Our strategy, in terms of marketing, does not consist of advertising. However, the infrastructure around that content marketing in terms of analytics and being able to tie those pieces together is absolutely and terribly difficult.
Larry Augustin: That’s an interesting comment on your part. This is a digression for our discussion today. I see content marketing as incredibly valuable. I agree with you that we’re just at the beginning of an industry of the right tools to really help and enable content marketing in a significant way. That said, I think content marketing is a piece of an overall strategy. We have to understand sometimes that a tool like content marketing, which is still early, is one of the set of tools in the toolbox. I have in fact >>>
Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) is trying several initiatives to keep the market interested in their stock, but continuing losses are leading to its “worst annual stock decline since 2008”. The stock has already fallen 22% since the beginning of the year.
Sramana Mitra: How long did it take you to get zero to one million in revenue and how many people were involved in the company at that point?
Adam Bloomston: It took us about two to three years. Maybe four.
Sramana Mitra: Three years? Just around the 2007-2008 timeframe, you hit that milestone?
Adam Bloomston: Probably right around there, yes.
Sramana Mitra: And how many people were you at that point? >>>
Jacob Cooke: Some of the software that we’ve developed plugs into all of the stores, so we can actually take products, put them in warehouses, and fulfill for JD.com, Yihaodian, or Tmall out of one logistics center. Once you’ve got your legal and licensing details worked out, they really push you towards getting into the platform. >>>
MIT Technology Review has recently published a 1959 article by sci-fi writer Isaac Asimov on how people get ideas. The article, relevant even today, says idea formulation requires isolation, because creativity is best nurtured alone and that group sizes to discuss ideas should be limited to five. For this week’s posts, click on the paragraph links.
Larry Augustin: What we find is that the open platform makes that very easy for anyone coming in. And that community buids very early integrations. Twitter is a great example. We had a Twitter integration available for our product long before most of us here even knew what Twitter was. It’s now part of the product, but it started out in that open developer ecosystem. That’s been a great success for us and that’s one of the reasons that we’re in business.
Sramana Mitra: That’s a good segue into my next question. You are in a very interesting vantage point to call out and introduce our audience to stuff that is happening now that are especially innovative. You talked about Twitter, D&B, Data.com type of integrations, which are kind of established partners at this point. What is the most interesting, exciting, and cool innovations that you’ve seen on that platform that’s from a startup?
Sramana Mitra: So were they paying you as consultant at that point and you would set up their credit card processing function?
Adam Bloomston: No. In credit card processing, the way it works is we would set up one account and then have them for months and years as a client.
Sramana Mitra: I see. And where did the technology of doing this come from? >>>
Jacob Cooke: What Alibaba has done is take that a step further and acted as the mediator between the transactions. Owner Jack Ma is one of the richest and most trusted people in the country, just the way Steve Jobs or Bill Gates are perceived in the West. What he’s done is add a level of guarantee. To be in the Tmall platform, for example, you have to accept the fact that anybody can return any product within seven days with no questions asked or in thirty days if there is a product defect. Consumers in China had no real worries about losing their credit card information or getting ripped off. They know it’s very safe.