Tom Keighley

Behind the business with Present.Me

Spencer Lambert, CEO of Present.Me, take Bdaily behind the business.

What is Present.Me?

Think YouTube meets Slideshare. Present.me enables individuals and organisations to create and share presentations online, so that the viewer sees both content (slides, photos or document) and the presenter (via webcam or uploaded video) side-by-side, on-demand.

Because it is cloud-based, there’s no need to install anything, it all happens in your browser; you upload your content, record yourself presenting into your webcam, clicking through your slides as you go. When you’ve finished, click publish and you can share with anyone, anywhere. They can watch your presentme on-demand, whenever it suits them.

What key challenges has your company recently faced?

Apart from the technical obstacles of building something that’s simple on the surface but complicated underneath, the biggest challenges are around time, money and people. We bootstrapped for the first year before going into beta, and that was tough, it really makes you focus on where you spend your hard earned pennies. With the arrival of investors, nothing really changed! We still watch every penny, and we still have a hundred ideas we’d like to build tomorrow, and we still don’t have enough people.

From a personal perspective, making the commitment from it being a part time project into a full time job was a big leap to take – going from a freelance career with enough money and work to keep me comfortable to taking a small salary and a full time job was a challenge.

What is your biggest achievement over the past 12 months?

The launch of Present.Me! It was a huge achievement to have our idea that we had been planning for the last 12 months go live to the public and we can’t wait for the next developments.

What is your biggest focus for the coming year?

Our immediate goals are to launch the Android & iPhone apps, and launch the multi-user ‘Team’ version, aimed at SMBs and teams within the enterprise. We are also focusing on building user numbers and growing the amount of content on the platform, these are all key to our success.

If you had to choose one top piece of advice for someone just starting out in business, or is currently operating within your industry sector, what would it be?

I don’t think I can say anything that hasn’t been said before. The key to success is to build something that’s beautiful (to use / to look at / to experience, whatever applies), and to surround yourself with people who are smarter than you or who can challenge any decision you make. You might always be right first time, but if you’re challenged and you can counter at least you’ll be sure that you’re right!

Can you share with us your view of the current landscape of business in your sector, and where your organisation sits within it?

The Cloud Computing / Software as a Service world is an exciting place to be right now. So much is happening and everything is moving so quickly, with old business models being torn apart, new ones emerging and new ideas quickly becoming mainstream whilst old ideas fall off the map. We’re right at the heart of this democratization of services that were a short time ago only available to the largest enterprises with the deepest pockets and now available to all. The small, fast and agile can now compete with the dinosaurs, and in fact, the dinosaurs are quickly learning to become fast and agile again!

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