커리어 피드

Gotta innovate on distribution

Jason Calacanis interview on David Sacks

(주)플레이팅 / Paul Jang / 17. 07. 14. 오후 3:27


플레이팅의 마케팅에 대해 고민하다가 접한 인터뷰 하나를 팀과 공유합니다. 플레이팅에서 실제로 판매를 시작한 지 3주, 재구매율은 높지만 신규고객의 유입은 아직 더딘 편이라 많은 고민이 필요한 시점입니다.

아래 동영상과 excerpt는 Paypal Mafia 중 한명인 David Sacks의 인터뷰입니다. David Sacks는 Paypal (sold to eBay for $1.5 billion) 에서 COO를 맡았고 Paypal 매각 후 Yammer를 창업해 역사상 (당시) 가장 빨리 성장한 SaaS company로 이름을 남겼습니다 (sold to Microsoft for $1.2 billion, 3.5 years into business). 최근 또 다른 역사상 가장 빨리 성장하고 있는 SaaS company인 Zenefits (valued at $4.5 billion, 2.5 years into business) 에 COO로 합류했습니다.

긴 인터뷰지만 플레이팅과 깊은 관련이 있는 두가지 포인트에 집중하고 싶어요. 제품만큼이나 distribution도 중요하다는 점, 그리고 플레이팅의 모델에 적합한 virality를 찾는 방향성을 제시하고 있습니다.

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(Excerpts from the interview)

TL;DR:

1. You can't just develop a great product; you have to innovate on distribution, too.

2. If you're doing something that's fundamentally local in nature, 'real world virality' helps.

"You have to have a way either for customers to find you or for you to find customers. That's the problem of distribution. Wearing my hat as an angel investor for a minute, I will invest in a company that has not figured out a business model yet; I will NOT invest in a company that hasn't figured out a distribution model - or at least doesn't have a strong theory.

You can't just develop a great product, you HAVE to innovate on distribution, too.

If there's a common denominator between Paypal, Yammer and Zenefits, all three companies innovated on distribution, not just product. What makes it difficult to innovate on distribution is that any good idea gets copied to death right away. If you think about the days of email/facebook, so many people did it and the channel got burned out by spam (email marketing) or was shut down (facebook games). It works for a while and gets copied. I call this the law of distribution arbitrage - any unusually successful distribution techniques will get copied until it's no longer effective.

Software is eating the world. There's a lot of different things SW can eat. Work on things for which you can innovate the distribution model. You should think about that from the beginning and bake that into your model."

Speaking of Uber's growth (David Sacks is an investor in Uber): 

"If you're doing something that's fundamentally local in nature, it makes a lot of sense to nail the model in one location/city/geography, and then scale it from there, because there's no point of scaling the model that's fundamentally broken.In terms of what I think made Uber grow unusually fast is the phenomenon I call 'real world virality.' 

When you use Uber, you're frequently doing it with other people. I can't tell you how many times, especially in the early days when not many people have heard about it, when I'm pulling out my phone and calling an Uber, people ask 'what is that?' and I end up explaining it to the people you're riding with or meeting with. There's somehow this nexus to the physical world virality.

Square Cash register is another example of this. They did this beautiful job of branding the machine. Then you'd walk into a store and you'd be like 'what is that? I wanna know what that is!' When enough other small business owners would see other stores using it, it will feed on itself."


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