1. How is Swagbucks.com different from other online reward sites like Mypoints and Ebates?
To put it simply, our selection. We offer the widest variety of means to earn rewards. If you take a look at our site, you will see that rewards can be earned not only by shopping, but also by watching videos, playing games, answering surveys, and discovering new brands. In addition, a Swagbucks user can earn rewards simply by searching the web using our browser search tool. No other company offers so many channels.
2. Why did you decide to go into this business?
My interest in this market evolved over time. The concept of consumer-brand relationships has always been a source of fascination for me, especially with regard to how it is affected by advertising mediums. I liked the idea that a consumer can be rewarded based on his or her preferences and interests. This provides an ex
tra benefit to the consumer in the relationship.
3. What do you think is the secret to your success?
Believing in the Tzemach Tzedek’s mantra of “tracht gut.” If you believe that good will happen, you will see good results. If you think the results won’t turn out as you hope, you’re setting yourself up for failure. The actual positive thought process brings on success.
4. Did you have a particular obstacle when you started out?
Like every startup, we didn’t have very much access to capital. It takes time to generate revenue. But if you have an end goal in mind, with positive thinking and bitachon, you’ll get there eventually.
It also took me time to realize that our religious background puts us in a unique position. When I meet potential investors and employees, I come across as unique, and people respect that. Do I emphasize the fact that I’m a Lubavitcher chossid with a beard? Most definitely. I try using that as a selling tool. At conferences, those I network with won’t forget my face; because I look so radically different, I’m hard to miss. By trying to look like everyone else, you’re actually doing yourself a disservice. Don’t blend in. Be proud of who you are, and don’t be ashamed to talk about it. It’s what makes you stand out in a crowd.
5. Projects you’re currently working on?
We are currently working to make the reward-earning experience one that is customized to each individual user’s preferences. We do this by finding out what it is that consumers are specifically interested in and then target them accordingly. If one customer prefers to earn rewards by gaming rather than shopping, we will know to recommend games to them that we think they’ll prefer, or vice versa.
6. What is the best piece of advice for someone looking to start a business in online marketing?
You need to have a good balance of gut instinct and hard data. Don’t develop the tendency of leaning to either one or the other, or you’ll find yourself having a hard time moving forward with the business. And, like I said before, always employ positive thinking and bitachon.
Protégé’s Swagbucks.com is an online rewards company that strives to bridge the gap between brands and consumers through an interactive and rewarding advertising medium. In 2013, it was ranked #67 in Inc. Magazine’s list of top 100 marketing companies. To learn more about Protégé and its affiliates, visit prodege.com. To join and get started at swagbucks.com, click here.
Yosef Gorowitz is a Crown Heights native, an Oholei Torah Alum and founder and CEO of Protégé LLC Network which includes the popular online rewards site, Swagbucks.com. After being mentored by his grandfather and father for a full year, he founded an offline business at the age of 20. When online commerce became wildly popular, he jumped on the cyber bandwagon and founded Protégé.
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