Building the Database
"You can't hire someone right out of college to do this, Darren."
She was wrong. I respected her a lot, but I now know for a fact that she was very wrong.
When we founded etailinsights (see here for why) we were on a quest to build the most accurate database of eCommerce Leads. This was no easy task. You see, there was a reason that something like etailinsights didn't exist... it was really really hard to source e-retail leads. And even harder to keep that database updated and accurate because in the e-retail industry, the Directors of eCommerce move around at a rate of 28% per year. It's hard to find the Head of Fulfillment for a major Online Retailer.
We knew this, so we hired the best of the best to help us build the database. A major inflection point in our business was when she and I disagreed over the "profile" of whom we should hire to join our in-house research team. I thought the best person to help us build a database of e-Commerce leads was someone who was hungry, college-educated, with zero experience. She believed it had to be a seasoned researcher with at least 15 years of research experience.
In order to provide the best solution for online retail leads, with accurate contact information, we had to have our own in-house research team. But, I wanted to go further than creating a directory of retailers, or simply a "list of the top e-retailers." I wanted to build a software company. And in order to do this, we needed to hire bright people early in their career and give them an opportunity to grow into larger roles at our company.
And so we parted ways. She was probably the most brilliant person I've ever worked with. But I had to follow my own path. She wasn't wrong, I was just more right.
And 7 years later we are still hiring and promoting researchers who fit the profile that I wanted. They build and constantly refresh the most accurate database of online retailers available today, and it's about to get even better (shhh, an announcement is coming #GlobalCommunityProfiles).
Are you attending any eCommerce Tradeshows for Leads in the next few months? Click below to download a list of conferences.