Brad Palmer founded Jostle.me after watching his first, publicly-traded company be dismantled and sold off after a hostile takeover.
Brad Palmer founded Jostle.me after watching his first, publicly-traded company be dismantled and sold off after a hostile takeover. Today he tells us about the importance of trimming everything from costs to bullet points on your presentations, and making enough noise to be noticed in today’s crowded market.
Q: What does your company do, how did it get started and where did the idea come from?
Brad Palmer: Jostle enables employees, amplifies culture and fosters teamwork inside of companies. We do what intranets have always tried to do, but never could.
For over 30 years, I’ve been building, leading and transforming teams inside of a wide variety of companies. Jostle came by reflecting on what was important to lead teams that could now be driven by web-based software.
Q: What are some of the projects you are working on right now?
Brad Palmer: Our People Engagement platform provides an overall foundation for an organization, connecting the people and teams together into a vibrant and connected organization. We are busy adding some exciting new aspects to the platform, based on input from our customers.
Q: Do you or have you owned any other businesses in the past, if so what happen to them?
Brad Palmer: I previously created ThermicEdge, a startup in the electronic materials space that grew its revenue to a run rate of $15 M. This was a public company that underwent a hostile takeover and then dismantled into cash, technology and its public company listing.
Q: How many people are currently using this platform and how do you plan to keep growing?
Brad Palmer: Jostle has been crafting its platform for four years in conjunction with carefully selected lead customers. We intentionally picked very conservative, very dispersed and very multi-generational customers so that we could refine the right usability and engagement dynamics. This fall we knew we had a robust product that resonated with users, so we started to ramp sales. In Q4 we acquired twice as many customers as we acquired in Q3.
Q: What is one thing you know now that you wish you knew before starting your company?
Brad Palmer: How hard it is to be noticed in a noisy marketplace. Although our product is very unique, it is hard to get noticed amongst the many, many look-alike enterprise social players.
Q: Can you please share some marketing advice for first time entrepreneurs.
Brad Palmer: Force yourself to always trim lists of benefits, bullets in slides, etc. to no more than 3. Find your essence.
Q: Starting out what were some of the mistake you made with your business and what did you learn from it?
Brad Palmer: We bought into the minimum viable product concept and got a simple version of our vision out within months. Then we spent too long trying to market this limited product on its own, rather than hunker down and build out the full value of the platform. Our magic is as a simple, elegant platform embodies an organization. Our minimum viable product was a lot bigger than we originally thought it would be. The good news is that as a platform play, our potential is huge.
Q: What was the best entrepreneurial advice you have ever been given and by whom?
Brad Palmer: “Never run out of cash.” Ian Delaney.
Q: What’s your definition of success?
Brad Palmer: For our product — seeing it create more vibrant and healthy workplaces (this one is already accomplished).
For our company — $100 M in profitable revenue
Q: What is your favorite entrepreneurship quote?
Q: What is the best way our community can get in touch with you?
Brad Palmer: Email is a good way to connect. firstname.lastname@example.org