NAME: Jamie Riddell
YOUR TITLE IN THAT BUSINESS: Co-Founder/CEO
WHEN DID THE BUSINESS LAUNCH?: 2009
ELEVATOR PITCH – TELL US WHAT YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS DOES IN A NUTSHELL:
DTT creates digital products for a global audience. We are known more by our products BirdSong Analytics and Postchup. BirdSong Analytics is now the World’s Leading ‘Pay as you Go’ Social Analytics platform used in over 120 countries from here to South Korea, across Africa, North America and into Asia.
WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IS YOUR BUSINESS’S USP OVER YOUR PEERS?
We have a small but fantastically experienced and skilled team.Across our team, we can bring to bear over 30 years of advertising experience, 20 years of digital marketing, the ability to design, build & market products on any digital platform with the collected wisdom and experience of building and selling one of the UK’s most successful digital marketing agencies.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST BUSINESS CHALLENGE SO FAR?
Competing on a global stage. Our last business, the digital agency Cheeze was one of the first UK digital marketing agencies. Based in Ipswich we grew the business to be one of the most successful national independents before the exit in 2007.
With DTT we aren’t competing on a national stage, but a global stage. That brings many challenges from the scope of competition to understanding different cultures and managing timezones. The biggest challenge has to be competing with and often beating million dollar funded business based in Silicon Valley, from our self-funded base in Suffolk.
AND YOUR GREATEST SUCCESS?
We launched BirdSong Analytics in late 2009. We felt there was a gap in the market [for a pay as you go analytics product] and we have been proved right.
Every day is a success. From something that didn’t exist before we built it, our product now sells in over 120 countries, supporting companies large and small. Waking up to overnight sales from South Korea, China, Chile and India make me proud.
WHAT DOES THE NEXT 12 MONTHS HAVE IN STORE FOR YOU?
More growth for BirdSong Analytics and for Postchup.com. We are currently extending the payment options for our websites to tap into local payment systems like AliPay for the Far East and GiroPay for Central Europe. We expect these will further deepen our customer base in some of the fastest growing territories in the world.
AND IN FIVE YEARS TIME YOU’D LIKE THE BUSINESS TO?
Bigger, Better, Faster, More!
NATURALLY, YOU WANT TO REACH CUSTOMERS AND SUPPLIERS AND THOSE WHO CAN HELP YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS SUCCEED. WHO MIGHT YOU WANT TO HEAR FROM?
We have more sales in Canada than East Anglia! Our products for BirdSong Analytics and Postchup can help any business using social media to understand how to improve their own activity or learn from their competitors. Our ‘Pay as you Go’ model us different meaning you can get insightful reports without the need to sign up for ongoing commitments.
Our customer base ranges from ‘Mom & Pop’ bloggers in Texas, Artists in Canada to Multinationals like McDonalds, Kia, Yamaha, Disney, the BBC. I am confident our reports can help any person or company serious about social media.
WHEN YOU FEEL TROUBLED OR ‘BEATEN’ AT ANY STAGE IN BUSINESS LIFE, WHAT’S YOUR SECRET TO RALLYING YOURSELF?
Sometimes you just need to go for a walk. Turn the ‘phone off and think about something else for a while. It is amazing how a walk by the sea can offer perspective or give you time to think.
I spend a lot of time thinking I am not successful and have to regularly tell myself that the definition of success can be different and evolving at time. I even wrote an article about it, which I know a lot of other people have found helpful. I read it every week when I need to give myself a pep talk!
DO YOU HAVE A MENTOR, OR HAVE YOU USED ONE? IF SO, HOW WAS THAT?
I have a fantastic business partner, Katherine. She is also my wife! We have been in business together since 1999 and complement each other well. Very much Yin & Yang. When I am down she is up and egging me on and I hope I do the same!
I’m enjoying mentoring some future business stars who I think could be amazing.
WHAT’S CHANGING ABOUT YOUR INDUSTRY THAT MAKES IT SUCH A GOOD SPACE TO BE IN?
In 2017 the Internet is ubiquitous but fragmented. We consume more Internet on our ‘phones than our desktops – our TVs and Fridges are connected to the Internet! From changes in Facebook and Twitter to wider shifts to cryptocurrency and Bitcoin, there is nothing as sure as change in this business!
WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO SOMEONE WANTING TO ENTER YOUR INDUSTRY SPACE?
Move fast! Don’t wait for someone to ask you. Do something, build something – just do it today. (and connect with me!)
THE PLUG BIT:
I’ve already mentioned www.birdsonganalytics.com . I am writing more about growing a business and sharing my experiences on Escaping Gravity which I would welcome you all to read. www.escaping-gravity.com . Away from work my passion is for music, travel and good food. I write about all three on my blog www.winetravelandsong.com
You can find me on www.Linkedin.com/in/jamieriddell – come and say hi!
AND NOW THE SLIGHTLY LESS CORPORATE BIT…
BEST THING ABOUT EAST ANGLIA: The space, the sea the sky.
YOURSELF IN THREE WORDS: Work in Progress
UNFULFILLED AMBITION: I think I have fulfilled most of my ambitions but there must be something that still drives me. Is it the desire to ‘do it again’ with a second business? To prove myself right, or wrong? I’m not quite sure to be honest!
FANTASY DINNER PARTY GUESTS: Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Jim Henson, George Harrison.
WHERE YOU LIVE, WHERE YOU’RE ORIGINALLY FROM (AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU HERE), HOW OLD YOU ARE, WHO YOU LIVE WITH:
Katherine and I moved to Suffolk in early 1999. We used to come here at weekends to a small cottage in Dennington, near Framlingham. We decided to raise our daughter in Suffolk and moved out from London to live full time in Suffolk. I commuted 6 hours a day to London for the first 10 months (Katherine commuted to Newmarket) before we set up the agency Cheeze. We set that up in the back room of the cottage before we grew to take offices in Ipswich, London and Leeds.
We now live between Woodbridge and Felixstowe. It affords us easy access to walks at Felixstowe, shopping in Woodbridge and easy access to the airports.