It was an honor to have my work so far with Spot Trender documented on Vietnam’s national TV! I managed to do the entire interview in Vietnamese (with English subtitle) 😁
During my travel to Silicon Valley, California, I got a chance to meet Rick Nguyen. He is co-founder of Spot Trender, a technology startup successfully disrupting a multi billion-dollar advertising testing industry in the United States. As a UC Berkeley alumnus and veteran startup founder, Rick Nguyen has been invited to speak about high-tech management, product development, and entrepreneurship at Microsoft, San Jose State University, and coding schools over across the United States. Vietnam Journal of Science (VJS) recently had an interview with him (http://www.vjsonline.org/science-technology-pulse/1463177507 ). This time, our talk concentrated on high-tech entrepreneurship.
Q : In your opinion, what are needed for a successful entrepreneur in the US, especially for an immigrant from Vietnam like yourself?
A : There are three essential things that I learned during my journey that I wished I had known before starting my company.
First, integration. Go outward to interact with different cultures instead of isolating yourself within your own ethnic group. American companies have tremendous advantage when they need to expand worldwide because they have access to other cultures right here at home: Indians, Chinese, Hispanics, Europeans etc. Access to other cultures and point-of-views allow companies to have deeper understanding of how different markets would react to their products or services. “Friends do deals with friends”, people do business with those they like and trust. Some cultural norms we have can alienate us from potential clients and partners. For instance, fish sauce, which is a delicious stable in many Vietnamese dishes, doesn’t smell good to Americans. While it is a huge part of our culture, eating fish sauce while having a non-Vietnamese guest over can break rapport.
Additionally, I’d like to emphasize that you need to be good at English. Invest in pronunciation coach and surround yourself daily with native English speakers to force yourself to use the language. This is extremely important because without the ability to express yourself clearly, people perceive you as less intelligent, less capable, less successful.
Sun Tzu said in the art of war: “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” When you know not only yourself and your culture, but also other people’s way of life and thinking, you have a much better chance of success.
Second, you need to be willing to work ten times harder than the natives. Startup is a constant struggle for survival. You’ll have to compete with people who were born in America, with access to existing network, language, and capital. You have to be willing to work ten times harder and smarter than your competition. For example, let’s talk about networking. People who were born in the U.S. already have a much bigger network here than you. That means you have to go out much more often and networking in a much smarter fashion. By networking smarter I meant you’ll have to be much more focused in your networking, i.e. meet the right people. Network with people who have what you want to have, who achieved what you wanted to do. To have high-quality people wanting to be your friend and work with you, you have to work hard to be your BEST self: Imagine your ideal self, ask yourself what that person would do, then do it. In Vietnam we have a saying: “If you’re close to ink, you’ll be black. If you’re close to lamb, you’ll be bright.”
Third, persuasiveness. Practice persuasion, or “pitching”. As an entrepreneur, you’ll be pitching 24/7 – whether to get investors, persuade a star employee to join your company, or potential clients to try your product. Join a public speaking club, like Toastmasters International. Practice your presentation, negotiation, motivation, and persuasive skills.
Q : According to you, what are the gain and the loss for an entrepreneur ?
A : In my opinion, you gain three things. First, you have complete control of your destiny, the freedom to do what you wan to do. Running a startup opens up a world of wonders and possibilities. With high-tech startup, you can make massive impact on the world. Second, wealth (smiling). Third, you’ll be part of the exclusive CEO club: People who are relatively smart, motivated, successful. You’ll be able to relate to them because you’ve gone through hell and back!
But be warned: Sacrifices need to be made. The most noticeable aspect is financial stability. When you start out, you won’t be able to afford that vacation or concert ticket you want. You’re lucky if you can pay for necessities like food and shelter. I slept on my mom’s couch for 2 years when first started my company. Second, you won’t have time – so forget about working 9 to 5 and having nice weekend. Finally, it will be hard on your relationships –when your friends go out to the bar Saturday night you’ll be busy working on your company. Your startup is like a new-born child. It will cry, poop, and need to be fed at 3 AM.
Q : What is your recommendation to first-time founders?
A : Starting a company is tough a way of life, so you’ll need to deliberate very carefully before starting. Build a financial cushion to yourself at least 5 years to work on your startup, as most startup ideas take a while to become reality. You don’t have to quit your job right away, make sure you do your homework to see if your idea is useful, and if people are willing to pay/use it before massively focusing on it.
To the successful startup entrepreneurs: When you’re on top, send the elevator downstairs. Help the next generation of leaders through investments, mentorship, and opportunities. Not only you’ll gain tremendously powerful ally in the future, you’re making Vietnam a better place.
Can Netflix make a better political ad than career politicians? That’s the question the team at market research firm Spot Trender recently tackled as part of their ongoing efforts to deliver practical insights to help ensure advertisers don’t waste valuable time and money. In their recent polling, the company tested Hollywood political heavyweight Frank Underwood, against real-world players Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio.
Spot Trender, an industry leader in ad testing technology, tested Death Wish spot against a typical Starbucks at Home commercial, to provide perspective. They published their results here.
While Starbucks took a more gender-neutral approach to their advertising, it was as effective as the Death Wish ad in causing viewers to consider and recommend the product. Women were much more likely to purchase Starbucks coffee after seeing their ad.
Click here to see full article.
According to commercial analytics firm Spot Trender’s national representative poll of Super Bowl ads, 64 percent of people said that they enjoyed the ad, and 87 percent said they would remember it. More than half said they were likely to buy the product.
Click here to see full article.
Spot Trender, an industry leader in cloud-based ad-testing technology, recently announced the results of their third annual Super Bowl Ad Performance Test. Conducted for Super Bowl 50, Spot Trender’s test examined themes relating to sexuality and gender roles. On February 4, Spot Trender conducted a scientific poll with 1301 participants in a national representative sample. Each participant saw one commercial and completed an online questionnaire through Spot Trender’s platform.
While advertisers have expressed some of their best ideas to capture your attention, I’m almost certain that women will continue to notice more than a few ads that portray a gender role reversal. However, when in doubt, we can always turn to the raw hard data to back up this theory.
So what have Spot Trender been up to? Well, did you check out the CNN Republican Debate on November 15th? If you did, you would have seen that Netflix aired a mock political ad of the famous Frank Underwood of House of Cards. With over 5,000 retweets within minutes of airing, it’s safe to say it was a real success and Frank’s still got it! But Spot Trender, being one of the most innovative companies in the market research industry today, took this genius joke even further by testing how the mock ad of Frank Underwood stacked up against ‘rivals’ Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio. Why did they do it? Well, as Rick Nguyen, co-founder of Spot Trender put it, “I was watching the GOP Debate and saw the Underwood ad and loved it. Then I was curious how the mock ad would perform against Bush and Rubio’s. So we did it!”
While heatmaps and mouse-tracking are viable solutions for most e-Commerce settings, there are times where companies need to take their research to the next level. As Rick Nguyen, the founder of ad testing firm Spot Trender pointed out in an interview.
While eyetracking be can be more expensive than traditional UX testing methods, like click tracking or mouse tracking, eyetracking can significantly improve your sales. For instance, if you have a site selling hats, you would probably want users to focus on the hat rather than the shirt the model is wearing.
Click here to view full article
Once part of The League, its members receive five new matches every day at 5pm – the so-called “happy hour”.
Linking online dating apps to LinkedIn was “a stroke of genius”, according to Rick Nguyen, a 28-year old entrepreneur and co-founder of Spot Trender.
“A lot of dating sites are trying to distance your professional life and your dating life as if they were two separate things. But to understand someone fully, I think you need both aspects of them, because as much as we try to say we are not our job, a part of us is our job,” he told the Guardian.
Krista White, 23, lives in Silicon Valley, California and works in public relations. She studied theater at Columbia University. She has been on the waitlist for The League since February.
“Right now I am like No 8,000 out of 100,000,” she told the Guardian. “This must not be for me. I don’t know.”
Unlike White, Nguyen spent just “a couple of days” on the wait list before getting drafted into The League. “I didn’t wait that long. Thank God,” he said, laughing. He too lives in Silicon Valley.
Nguyen, who said his response rate on other apps was about 20% to 30%, said: “On The League, I have got close to a 100% response rate with my matches.”
Link to article here: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/aug/08/dating-apps-the-league-luxy
What is Spot Trender? It is a company where you can pretest your ads. This company is specialized on pretesting tv, radio, and online commercial. This market research platform will provide you real data on what people like and dislike from your ads. This company gathers the data based on a survey. All you need to do is send your videos and goals of your ads to this company. And this platform will create a survey for your purpose. It also offers you with easy tools to create a survey step by step.
You will get benefits from pretesting your ads on this market research platform. This platform has 45 million of members across the world. With such a large number of participants, you will get the data you need very fast once the survey is created. You do not need to wait for weeks. You can gain your data in a few days and even hours. Therefore, you can make decision in editing the rough cut of your ads.
Another advantage that you will get from this platform is that it is affordable. You can even purchase for free participants while the offer lasts. You can also choose another package. This company offers you with $5 price per survey participant. In this package, you will get useful features such as analytics dashboard, easy to use survey maker, report generator, and customer supports. By purchasing this package, you do not need to burden yourself in finding audiences for your survey.
This company is full with excellent staffs and data scientists. They have years of experience in reporting data and making data analysis. Therefore, you are guaranteed to get high quality and accurate data. From the report and analysis, you will then be able to make the right decision to make your better ads to improve your ROI.
Link to full article.