Looking Back on 2018
It’s been an incredibly exciting year at BRANTU; we successfully launched our live website, took part in Black Friday and Cyber Monday, two of the biggest retail events of the year, went to RISEUP Summit and mingled with some of the emerging bright minds in the field of e-commerce, started working on our soon-to-be-released app, hosted our board over at the Egypt office, significantly increased in size and operations and got infinitely closer as a team of people who are striving for all the same things in their own - very different - ways.
Looking back on 2018, it’s hard to pin down all that we’ve learned in a listicle that wouldn’t drag behind us for several blocks, so we narrowed it down to the power three. Here’s what we learned this year.
Numbers aren’t always right
Passing by the community room, you will almost always be met with the constant mumbling of our Analytics guy. For the last few months, he has camped out next to the fridge for sustenance and developed a habit of yelling at his laptop…and chasing people with cameras.
Our Marketing Manager
In his private bunker away from the office paparazzi, he spends his days looking at numbers and trying to make sense of them; mapping out patterns of consumer behavior and pinpointing the times of day when our baby project - elprices.com - gets the most sales.
You see, while the latest statistics assure us that consumers tend to shop more at the beginning of the week, with serious sales starting around 8; we’ve been mostly getting sales at the end of the week, peaking at 4 in the morning!
Our Content Creator
This little fact drove our Analytics guy to the end of his wits, and our marketing team hasn’t slept in three weeks with obvious stretch marks from all the late-night binge-eating. What has that taught us? While number are shiny on paper, real life can be very different - and in order to achieve great sales, you have to know more about your consumer than the back of your hand...that you probably haven’t seen in many nights.
Big or small, you must roll with the punches
This lesson is mostly credited to Rocky - a popular favorite among the office’s large assortment of dorks, geeks, nerds and techies. You see, Rocky didn’t get where he did for throwing a good punch, he did it be staying on his feet when a Russian was re-arranging his face to the scratchy beats of 80s orchestral rock.
Changes are a vital part of life, but many businesses lose sight of that in their unrelenting chase of KPIs, projections and budget estimates. This year has taught us that in order to run an e-commerce startup, deficit is your best friend. While many campaigns work out the first time, the ones that flop can be given second wind with the right decision...and inevitably a brave allocation to match it.
Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.
If there’s anything a Swedish e-commerce venture-building company in the heart of Cairo and an Italian Mafia empire in the heart of New York City have in common, it’s this; family always comes first.
E-commerce comes with many challenges, but it all comes down to the power three: it’s fast, it’s demanding, and it’s ever-changing. As things take new forms under pressure and expectations mutate in the quarterly melting pot, remember the wise advice of Don Corleone; never get angry, spend time with the family, never let business get in the way of personal and whatever you do; give it your all and go to the mattresses. We owe 90% of our success to the bonds we’ve created with our colleagues and the magic spark that came out of it and gave life to everything else. The remaining 10%, well, you can’t expect us to tell you ALL the ingredients to the secret family recipe, can you?
There’s much to achieve in the last two weeks, but we will be saying goodbye to 2018 with a smile and a fluttering handkerchief. What has your company learned this year? Let us know in the comments!