Research has shown that content marketing is a powerful way to attract views and gain popularity for your business. But without knowing how to code, your options are limited in how well you can market your content. With Readz, there is now a solution. Their user friendly platform allows you to create ads as fast as ever which is easily formatted for any website. Don’t bother with all those plug-ins, and don’t bother with learning how to code; Readz gives you everything you need simply and without sacrificing beauty.
Take over the under-utilized mobile-ad front with Bart De Pelsmaeker, CEO of Readz, Inc. who takes us through his new fast and growing company.
Tell us about your product or service.
Readz’ innovative online content-creation platform enables marketers at medium to large enterprises to rapidly deploy interactive and stylish-looking microsites, landing pages, lookbooks, web magazines, white papers and reports, and push the content to mobile devices with just the click of a mouse and no software coding. With the Readz 2.0 platform, marketing professionals access a central screen and toolbox to drag-and-drop text, images, and other rich media on the fly. The results are feature-rich microsites and landing pages that are easily formatted and edited online, leapfrogging current template-based technologies.
How is it different?
Readz brings brands to life in a rapid and visual way that makes it simple for marketers to create stunning content and quickly place it online. You can think of us as a CMS for microsites. Readz offers limitless design: it does not require marketers to work within the boundaries of a pre-defined theme. Any element can be changed easily in the editor at any time, without any coding.
Readz 2.0 vastly improves marketing to mobile devices. The platform is hosted entirely online, so it does not require end users to deal with time-consuming content downloads. Content is dynamically reformatted on the fly, rather than scaled to sizes that are too small to read. The tool also offers built-in touch-and-swipe navigation and social media sharing, and delivers advanced search engine optimization capabilities. And, unlike standard publishing tools such as WordPress, Readz 2.0 does not require multiple software plugins to work properly.
Readz also includes dynamic styles that allow users to adjust font types and sizes via a simple web interface, floating, moveable toolbars, a dynamic table of contents, and the live embedding of Readz content onto websites. In addition, a universal copy-paste tool allows users to copy text or image files from an original source and paste it directly onto the Readz canvas.
Additionally, pricing for the Readz 2.0 platform starts at $300 per month, which is exponentially less than competing solutions, such as the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
Readz started in 2011 targeting publishers, but we eventually shifted our focus toward B2B and B2C marketing professionals, digital marketing directors and web content management. Their choices were either to purchase a big content management system, like the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite, or a do-it-yourself solution which was also costly and cumbersome. Some marketers have turned to WordPress to get the job done, but even this solution is tough, because coding is required to do anything complicated. We realized that there would be significant interest in a solution that could easily deploy microsites at a low cost, and be more mobile. So, we created a feature-rich platform for developing mobile-friendly content that doesn’t require coding.
What is the business model?
Although more than 60 percent of American adults have a smartphone, less than 25 percent of today’s B2B web traffic is driven from mobile devices, and an even smaller percentage of that generates revenue. This is primarily because most web content is static and requires time-consuming downloads that users don’t want to deal with. Readz helps clients create interactive stories and experiences that draw customers and prospects into the content and engages them in ways that were not possible before.
Our business helps marketers develop and publish stunning web content and push it out to the web and mobile devices quickly and easily. We are a SaaS-company. Our customers pay a monthly fee to create and publish with our CMS.
What inspired the business?
Earlier in my career, I worked at AGFA, a technology vendor in the publishing and printing industry, where I was responsible for the graphical software department that powers amongst others 65 percent of the workflows of all newspapers worldwide. Before that, I worked in IBM’s software group, where I held various sales and marketing roles.
These experiences allowed me to realize an opportunity to help publishers develop content in a much more dynamic and cost-effective way. With Ariel Yaar, our VP of R&D, joining the team, we retooled the Readz platform with a vision to provide even greater value to B2B marketers, who could leverage our solution to easily produce brilliant-looking, interactive web content, very affordably, and without coding.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
We want to take next big step forward with our platform. We are going to build in new results-driven features that will help marketers. A lot of marketing today is getting people to fill out forms. We want to make that process easier and help people optimize that feature. We are going to add features focused on lead generation and prospect qualification. Our goal is to triple the number of large customers that we have and triple our sales revenue.
If you could be put in touch with one investor in the community, who would it be and why?
I’d want to speak with Mitch Kapor. He is the founder of Lotus Development, and behind some ground-breaking products such as Lotus 1-2-3 and Lotus Notes. He created a whole industry around collaborative products, and would have a vision that is very compatible with Readz.
What does being “Made in LA” mean to you and your company?
It’s not only geographic location, of course, it’s also that our team can participate in all the cool things that the Los Angeles area has to offer our employees. We take advantage of the many networking opportunities here, and embrace the Silicon Beach lifestyle of working hard and playing hard. It’s really a great combination.
What else can be done to promote early stage entrepreneurship in Los Angeles?
Personally, I think L.A. is growing very well. I’ve seen a lot of growth since our company was established a couple years ago. Sure, a lot more can happen here, but we’ve seen nice organic growth, with people motivated to build a bigger tech scene here. We recently had chat with one of LA’s biggest incubators, AmplifyLA, who is a proponent of letting market forces dictate growth, rather than forcing government intervention. No matter how it all plays out, we are optimistic about continued solid growth for the region.
Where is the best place to watch the sun set in Los Angeles?
The Malibu Seafood Restaurant is the best place to watch the sun set in Los Angeles. They have nice terrace with great seafood and a great view.