I’ll bet if you were to do the research you would probably find thousands and thousands of conferences and conventions for marketing folks. I seem to get invited to a new marketing conference every other day. But can you believe there’s no social network, community or collaborative space online just for marketers? That was until Ottawa startup Suprpod came along.
The online portfolio and collaboration site exclusively for marketers takes it’s name Suprpod from Dolphins. In an interview with nibletz.com co-founder Jennifer Butson says:
“Superpod is the term given to large groups of dolphins who travel together. Because dolphins are brilliant communicators in the animal kingdom, the term lends well to the group of expert communicators in the human world!”
Which is why their logo is also a dolphin. You should see the tricks their team can do with rubber balls on their noses.
All kidding aside though, collaboration between left brained marketers can be healthy, creative and produce some amazing results. That’s why it’s hard to believe no one had thought of this before.
The site has three basic function areas, browse, share and create.
The browse section is home to curated portfolios from some of the industry’s hottest minds. It’s ripe for the taking right their at Suprpod. PR, and marketing people can check out Suprpod for some of the best marketing ideas out there.
Share is where questions are asked and answered about anything related to PR, marketing and social media.
Create, will allow users to display their work like they’ve never seen before.
Butson has a lot of experience in both marketing and startups. It was working on a different startup that helped he find, hone and craft the idea for Suprpod. We got a chance to talk with Butson, read the rest of the interview below.
What is Suprpod?
Suprpod is a portfolio and community platform exclusively for marketers.
In layman’s terms, how does it work? (In other words how would you explain it to your grandmother)
Marketers can input content and analytics (everything from blog posts and press, to web analytics and social media) from a campaign that is displayed like an infographic. They can also pose marketing-related questions to the community.
Who are the founders and what are their backgrounds?
Jen Butson, Co-Founder, is a self-professed marketing aficionado. After graduating from Telfer, she worked at various agencies and studios. Often left to her own devices, Jen became frustrated with the lack of platforms for young, savvy, ambitious marketers.
She currently lives in Ottawa, Canada, and when not working on Suprpod is doing freelance marketing for some awesome clients, and doing promotions work (http://jenniferleepromotions.com).
Jamie Calder, Co-Founder, left the Maritimes after a failed semester of a B.Sc., due to an addiction to playing Risk. Reaching Vancouver Island and realizing he couldn’t go any further, he settled down almost long enough to receive a Computer Programmer Analyst diploma before heading to Ottawa to join the tech boom; working for several startups, multi-nationals, government and design agencies before finally deciding he’d had enough of working for other people’s startups.
When not working on Suprpod, Jamie is busy making sure the men of the world have fresh underwear as the Director of Technology at Manpacks, or helping others find work as the Founder of RealWebJobs.
Where are you based?
Ottawa, Canada, eh!
What’s the startup scene/culture like where you’re based?
We have a small, but dedicated startup scene here. We have some local success stories that inspire and help us in funding and hosting events, lots of offices with extra desk space, and plenty of amazing mentors.
How did you come up with the idea for Suprpod?
I had been working for another local startup fairly soon after graduating University. Being young I lacked experience in certain areas. Being at a startup I didn’t have a lot of guidance or resources so often I was left to my own devices. It was when I was searching the internet for help with writing a release on our impending acquisition that I realized a huge need for an online community for marketers like myself.
How did you come up with the name?
Superpod is the term given to large groups of dolphins who travel together. Because dolphins are brilliant communicators in the animal kingdom, the term lends well to the group of expert communicators in the human world!
What problem does Suprpod solve?
The umbrella problem that we solve is getting marketers recognition. Users can do this through infographic-style case studies of their work, as well as gaining expert status in their areas of expertise through the questions section.
What’s your secret sauce?
Because Suprpod is the first of its kind, we have an obvious advantage. We’re confident that our platform design, partnerships, and users will be our competitive advantage.
Are you bootstrapped or funded?
What is your goto market strategy?
We had close to 600 people sign up for Suprpod before we had anything to show – and that was without paid advertising or public relations. We have a large network of people that are champions for the platform, and are helping us in the alpha and beta phases of testing. Once we have a solid product to show, we will target University/College marketing groups, and startups to generate interest.
What’s one challenge you’ve overcome in the startup process?
Our biggest challenge to this date has been getting a focus on the platform. Because there are no competitors, only inspiration sources, we had to figure out a lot on our own. The makeup of the case studies was especially difficult because it blended content and analytics, and also had to be visually appealing and easy to read. An infographic style was a natural direction.
Who are some of your mentors and business role models?
We’re very lucky to have some amazing mentors and advisors on our side. Among them are Scott Annan (Mercury Grove and Accel.io), Harley Finkelstein (Shopify), and Andrew Draper (formerly Manpacks, currently Snapable and Scratchpad).
For role models we really admire the co-founders of Dribbble. The essence of their community – the passion, the skill, and the camaraderie – is something we’re aiming to cultivate in Suprpod. I look up to Arlene Dickinson as both an entrepreneur and a marketer.
What’s next for Suprpod?
Currently we are working on releasing our beta version and on-boarding our remaining signups, in phases. The next steps largely depend on if we receive funding or not, and how much. We need to have the bulk of the platform re-designed once we’ve changed and added some features, and need to tend to our multiple revenue streams.