The company of the day is RumbaFish Technologies, based in the US. RumbaFish is the software-as-a-service platform that powers the engagement marketing economy. You will find below an interview with Michelle Bonat, CEO and Founder of RumbaFish. All the best to them and congrats for being the startup of the day!
Interview with Michelle Bonat, CEO and Founder of RumbaFish
Who are you?
Michelle Bonat, CEO and Founder, RumbaFish.
How do you feel being the most promising ‘company of the day’ per Microsoft?
We are very honored.
What did you do before creating your company?
I created an online social game called stompBox tunes, which was successful on Facebook and won the SJ Business Journal Emerging Technology Internet award . It grew based on our techniques for engaging our users in interactive behavior, which they would then pass on to their friends, and exponentially grow the user base. Prior to that I developed world class software for Oracle and worked as a marketer (even got an MBA in marketing) helping companies grow their business online.
How did you get the idea? What s the genesis?
I saw the level of engagement and growth we were able to create with our stompBox game, where people became completely involved, even though the points were literally worth nothing. It struck me that if we could bring a ‘give to get’ type interaction to companies, so their customers could become engaged – and addicted, really – to their brand in a way that was plug and play, it would be very powerful … and RumbaFish was born!
What do you sell? What is your company’s mission?
RumbaFish is the software-as-a-service platform that powers the engagement marketing economy. We allow companies to create interactive marketing campaigns online, cross promote with their partners, leverage their influencers, and track and analyze the whole thing – then do it again, multiple ways, in multiple locations. These companies receive our service with fixed monthly subscriptions based on long term contracts.
What is your market?
RumbaFish is available to companies starting from the smallest mom and pop operations to larger enterprises. We have a program to fit every organization.
Any clients? References? Partners?
We are welcoming new customers and partners all the time. Our best customers are companies that are looking to innovate the way they find, engage and manage their customers online. Good partnerships for us are firms that provide value added marketing or technology services – ad agencies, consulting firms, or companies with complementary technology.
Funding history? VCs? BA?
We’ve accomplished all this without any outside funding. Now that we have our first product released and paying customers, we are inviting in selected investors.
Our service can be used on any web platform in any language.
How many employees do you have? How many developers?
Are you hiring? If yes, what? Where?
We are looking for software engineers who know ASP.NET, C#, HTML and MySQL in a Visual Studio development environment; and sales/biz dev folks with enterprise experience.
Which platform are you building on? Why?
RumbaFish is an ASP.NET 2.0 set of applications with a MySQL db running on Amazon in the Cloud (EC2). It is a great combination for the speed to market, efficiency and scalability that we require.
Do you have any Software IP? Is there something that you’re the only one to do on the market?
Our proprietary IP includes our patent-pending engagement engine, which puts our customer building expertise into the software.
Who’s your role model?
My grandfather who was an entrepreneur before it was cool.
Where do you see opportunities today in the Software/internet areas?
We see companies needing to manage the convergence of CRM/social networking/cloud computing/online marketing technologies at the same time as the marketing paradigm is shifting to engagement marketing. But it’s hard to understand, much less be successful, with all that. That is where RumbaFish helps.
Looking for funding? If yes, how much?
We are raising a $500k seed round.
What about the BizSpark Program? What do you think? Are you going to join? Why?
We are proud members of the BizSpark program and use the technology provided in our company’s platform.
Any advice to young Software entrepreneurs?
Go for it! This is a great time to start a company.
Anything else you’d like to say?
Why just fish for customers when you can RumbaFish?