Movers & Shakers Q&A with Gideon Lask of BuyaPowa.com
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Gideon Lask, founder and CEO of BuyaPowa.com
1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business?
Brands recognising the power of social commerce as an amazing marketing tool; and a great way to develop direct, transactional relationships with their end-customer.
2. What is the biggest challenge to your business?
Customers are ready; we are ready; and we all want brands to start embracing social commerce more aggressively. It will come, and it will be great, but we want it faster.
3. With the benefit of hindsight what would you have done differently so far?
We’d have started working with the magazine publishers earlier. They are using co-buying to make that tricky shift from content to commerce. Their view is that co-buying leverages the relationship they already have with their audience, which is based on recommendation and empowerment. It’s proving to be far more powerful than bolting on a traditional e-commerce store. They also get to charge their existing advertisers for running a co-buy to complement an existing ad campaign – so it proves to be lucrative too.
4. What is the future of the physical store?
They’ll be far fewer; and we’ll hopefully move beyond the Apple store-clone phase we’re in.
5. What will the high street look like in a decade?
I want them all to look like Marylebone high street, but they won’t. I predict Coffee shops, pizza restaurants, and Amazon lockers.
6. Will mobile devices be the primary sales channel in the future?
No – don’t forget the TV, and the fact that huge amounts of online shopping happens from the office. The future is about shopping across all of these channels.
7. What other retail business do you admire?
As a customer I’m really enjoying Mr. Porter, by Net-a-Porter. It demonstrates how brilliantly a melting pot of editorial and commerce can work. I love Amazon, but the thought of an online future dominated by mega departments stores depresses me. And I’m excited by businesses like Shop Kick. Multi-channel means so much more than click-and-collect. The potential of mobile CRM to deliver entertaining and rewarding shopping experiences is huge.
8. If you hadn’t been a retailer what would you have liked to do?
I’d have liked to be Jensen Button. That would have made my wife happy too.
9. What marks out of 10 do you give yourself so far for achievement?
I give the BuyaPowa team a solid 10. We’re all in this to help define the next chapter of e-commerce – and we’re doing it. As a retailer I’ve never seen the levels of sharing, lead generation, and brand advocacy that goes on around a co-buy. I’m very proud of what we’ve done in just 12 months and I’m excited to see what we do in the next 12.
10. Who would you place in the Top 30 Multi-channel/e-commerce Movers & Shakers?
Patrick Wall, founder of MetaPack. He is quietly and very successfully streamlining the home delivery experience for all of us online retailers. It’s a great solution and he is a great guy.