In case you missed it, I interviewed Paul Burger about his latest project, Skyscrpr, a solution helping online publishers sell ad space directly to advertisers in a whole new way. Don’t worry though, he was nice enough to answer a few more questions I thought you might be interested in … you know, business stuff.
FUEL: What was the catalyst that inspired you to start Skyscrpr?
PAUL BURGER: Skyscrpr came from a huge need of our own. We were battling to manage the ad inventory that we had at our last startups, and couldn’t find a simple elegant solution to the problem. So we built it. We started talking to customers early on and found that the problem was universal among bloggers.
FUEL: What have been some of the challenges of approaching the market as a new company?
PAUL BURGER: I think one of the biggest challenges of being a new company is trying to do so much with so little. You are always trying to be bigger, faster, stronger than you have the resources to be. But I also think that that is what makes what we all do so special. We’re forced to be innovative and that is how some if the best products are born.
FUEL: How have you been building interest around Skyscrpr?
PAUL BURGER: We have been really getting our hands dirty and talking to customers and showing them what we’re working on every step of the way. We have been doing demos of the product since day one, and while we realize this isn’t the most scalable approach, we knew they would tell us if we were thinking about things the right way. Once people saw what we were working on, they would tell their friends, tweet about us and even do a blog post. We put up a splash page and made sure we gave people a place to put their email in, so we could get in touch when we launched.
FUEL: What personal challenges have you faced as the entrepreneur behind Skyscrpr?
PAUL BURGER: Just read this quote and thought it would be relevant here: “We entrepreneur’s are willing to spend a few years of our life like most won’t, so that we can spend the rest of our lives like most can’t.”
I think starting anything is typically quite hard. It’s where most people get stuck. It comes with all kinds of fun things like sleepless nights, panic attacks and cold sweats. It’s incredibly hard to watch your bank account dwindle as you work day and night to make your little dream come true, all in the hopes that people with buy into your vision.
But for our team at Skyscrpr, we wouldn’t have it any other way.
We consider ourselves among the luckiest people in the world. We get to do what we love, day and night. We work with the smartest people in the world, and we build things that help people live better lives.
FUEL: Do you have plans to expand beyond the blogging community?
PAUL BURGER: Yes. Bloggers is where we are starting because it’s where we come from. But Skyscrpr works for any type of web publisher. Anyone who creates content for the web can use Skyscrpr.
FUEL: Does your team have a system that works best for you?
PAUL BURGER: Shut up and build shit! Ha! But seriously, that’s pretty much it. We are a small team that can move very quickly, so we usually have a quick scrum in the morning and the evening to make sure we are all on the same page, but other than that we all head to our corners and get to work.
FUEL: Where do you guys work mostly — office, public space, home?
PAUL BURGER: We have a great shared office space in San Francisco and another one in Vancouver. We used to all work out of a house in SF when we were getting started, but now it is awesome to be around other smart people doing cool things.
FUEL: What advice might you pass along to aspiring entrepreneurs?
PAUL BURGER: Not sure I am in a position to give advice just yet. ;) But right now is a crazy exciting time. And I am incredibly happy to be a part of it!