E607: The Ecommerce Episode! BenchMade Modern, CloudPeeps, and Bento innovate in on-demand customized furniture, human resources, and Asian cuisine



about this episode

Today, a special ecommerce episode! Jason sits down with three startup founders innovating in this exciting space. First is Edgar Blazona of BenchMade Modern, an on-demand furniture service that builds personalized sofas, to-the-inch, in 24 hours; second is Kate Kendall from CloudPeeps, a marketplace that connects businesses with the top freelance marketing, content, and community professionals; third is Jason Demant from Bento, an on-demand food delivery app that allows users to customize their meal with Asian-inspired dishes. Thank you to Braintree for sponsoring these three great conversations exploring ecommerce trends, challenges, and opportunities in 2016 and beyond.

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02:20 – 10:44: Jason introduces Edgar from Benchmade Modern, and their value proposition.

12:58 – 17:35: Edgar discusses some of the additional features offered by Benchmade Modern, and how these are disruptive in the evolving ecommerce industry.

18:31 – 20:19: Jason and Edgar talk about how ecommerce, digital interfaces, and gestures­based behavior is becoming ubiquitous and increasingly necessary.

20:20 – 21:36: Edgar discusses the additional step of VR and the role that’s playing in their own company and the ecommerce industry.

23:27 – 31:07: Jason introduces Kate from Cloudpeeps, a marketplace for vetted marketing professionals, and the history of how the company idea came to be.

31:09 – 34:17: Kate and Jason talk about agencies and the current models for hiring are increasingly broken.

34:18 – 35:08: Jason and Kate discuss the advanced relationships that form from the Cloudpeeps hiring model, and how this is managed by Cloudpeeps.

35:09 – 35:57: Jason discusses Ryan Carson (of Treehouse) and how Ryan adapted his business model to meet the needs of employees, increasing productivity as a result.

36:20 – 37:58: Kate and Jason speak honestly about productive time in the day, the future of work, and the flexibility workers want.

38:12 – 39:05: Kate discusses more about how freelancing is hard from a payment perspective, and how Cloudpeeps helps solves that issue.

39:49 – 40:50: Jason asks Kate about FirstGrowth Venture Network, which helped form the foundation for her business ideas.

49:45 – 52:35: Jason introduces Jason D., founder of Bento, a company from the LAUNCH incubator, and Jason D. gives a quick pitch on Bento and the current state of the industry.

53:25 – 57:45: Jason D. gives a Bento demonstration and the Jasons discuss how customization is a vital part of how customers view ecommerce.

57:47 – 60:56: The Jasons discuss “Unit Economic Cost,” Bento’s specific UEC, and the importance of product­ market fit first, and unit economics second.

61:00 – 69:00: Jason D. talks about the questions he answers as an ecommerce entrepreneur today: knowing your Unit Economics and differentiating factors in the competitive landscapes. He also gives answers to these questions specifically for Bento.

69:01 – 70:14: The Jasons talk about the demographics of those most interested in ecommerce purchasing through Bento.

71:06 – 72:12: Jason asks Jason D. what advice he would give to on­demand ecommerce entrepreneurs.

72:15 – 73:57: Jason D. discusses the future size of the on­demand economy and the variables that will play a role for consumers.

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