Diefendorff does things differently. So when I got connected with SOMA, an upcoming e-commerce platform that uses some cool technology to sell watches to and between watch lovers, everything seemed to click.
Sure, some of the big web sites where you can buy anything from cat food to trampolines make sense in a lot of ways. But, some of those big e-commerce sites lack personality and are definitely missing a sense of community. If there's one thing I've learned about watch lovers - there's a huge sense of community. It's really cool to see and be a part of.
SOMA will combine a lot of important features about modern day commerce that some of the big guys don't currently offer: a way to connect with like-minded people, a way to purchase products you love, and way to use technology to build and secure trust among everyone involved.
Their tagline is "E-Commerce Has Evolved." I'm glad I'm along for the ride and that we're staying ahead of the evolution.
To find out more, I saw down with SOMA's Chief Marketing Officer Jacob Andra to find out more about the platform and what we can expect:
What is SOMA? Where did the idea start? When is it coming out?
SOMA unites three important functions that really belong together:
1) that of an e-commerce platform,
2) that of a social media site, which allows users to monetize social influence by promoting the products of others, and
3) that of authenticating provenance using blockchain-based proofs.
The idea began several years ago when CEO Jukka Hilmola and his fellow co-founder noticed the lack of social connection on existing e-commerce sites, as well as widespread fraud and counterfeiting. We're working hard on having our marketplace ready for launch in Q1 2019.
Cryptocurrency has a reputation for a lot of hype, how does distributed ledger technology make the world a better place? Oh yea, and what is distributed ledger technology?
Distributed ledger technology, also known as blockchain, encodes information as a chronological sequence that can be independently verified and is nigh impossible to alter once encoded. While this may sound not at all sexy, it has the potential to revolutionize the way humans transact by solving the problem of trust. Currently, we rely on massive and unwieldy institutional systems to help overcome the fact that we don't know nor trust one another. These inefficient intermediaries allow us to transact on a society-wide or international basis, with an acceptably low degree of error and malfeasance. However, if DLT allowed us to deal more directly through transparency and immutability, the cost of transactions to society could reduce by orders of magnitude.
SOMA offers three distinct but interrelated value propositions, and the watch industry needs all three. Plus, it's a vibrant community, very active on social media and understandably proud of their timepieces, which smooths the way for market penetration. After establishing a beachhead in watches, and proving our concept, we'll move horizontally into adjacent sectors and from there to --rule the world of e-commerce?
What's your professional background? Any advice for someone looking to get involved in start-ups?
I've worked as a digital marketer and growth hacker for a variety of firms, usually in the tech space. I think that networking within the startup community--and honing your skills--is the best way to find a place in the startup world.
In five words or less, why should someone care about SOMA?
We're doing big things.
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