Jerry and I interviewed Jason Kintzler back in November. Jason is the founder and CEO of PitchEngine.
Jason has a new book out, “The New American Startup” which, as Jason says, “details the story of how western independence and self‐reliance led him to create a disruptive technology from the unlikeliest of places”.
Kintzler, who has a background in print journalism, created PitchEngine because he was frustrated with being largely unable to send content and photos online to various services. This was back before tools like DropBox were available and he said, “everything was done with Word documents and files.”
He wanted to create a platform where advertisers and publications could connect to share content. He also wanted to bring more of a real-time component to the world of public relations. He found that traditional PR was conducted on a very regimented and scheduled basis, for example, “two press releases a month”. PitchEngine allows content to go out immediately and allows users and readers to share social press content across the social web.
In creating his business model, Kintzler found that what worked best for him was getting the right people in the room. “Our target person is someone who gets what we are trying to do,” he said. He also noted that when he hires people to work at his office in Wyoming, he does not hire for “positions” but rather “we hire people who fit and understand what we’re trying to do. From there, we teach and grow.”
There is no template for your life. We all have stories to tell. Discover your story.- Jason Kintzler”
Most of what Kintzler does, in both PitchEngine and other projects is focused on simple organic growth. For instance, he created the news service County 10 in his home county because he wanted to give county residents what a traditional local newspaper could not: accessible, real-time news as it happened. Content on County 10 is all local (no AP newswire stories), multi-media rich, generally stories are less than 300 words and content is generated by local newspeople. “We also help local business people be better marketers.” He found that local residents used social media tools such as Facebook to share content.
Kintzler believes that we need to focus not on increasing “fans” or “followers” but rather focus on what he calls your relevant audience. They have a direct connection to your brand somehow through your direct audience. He recommends you 1) start to tell your story 2) tell people what you are doing in the world 3) create content and 4) “stop measuring the irrelevant”.
Finally Kintzler reminded us that “if you’re passionate about your small business, own it. No one is going to get that message across better than you.”
Check out Jason’s recent TEDx Jackson Hole TED Talk.