With the full schedule for the Turing Festival now published, here’s a taste of what’s lined up for August. Our first stop: Arjan Haring, self-described wannabe breakdancer and science rockstar, and Chief Rebel Officer of Dutch startup Persuasion API.
What does Persuasion API do?
We have a learning algorithm that optimizes persuasion strategies per individual website visitor. [This tool was the subject of a recent feature in Wired magazine, which explained the difference between taste profiling, which is what Amazon or Netflix uses to recommend new products you might like, and persuasion profiling. While the former tries to guess what you like, the latter analyses how to pitch it so that you’re most likely to buy.]
What’s your company culture in 3 words?
Fun, handsome and good-looking.
Who is your ideal/target customer?
Large e-commerce website like Amazon or M&S.
How long have you been working on this idea?
Maurits Kaptein, my co-founder: 2 years.
Me: what idea?
What stage is the company at? How will you generate revenue?
We will start beta testing this September. The business model is based on paid API calls (suggestions of persuasion strategies per individual).
What’s the next big milestone for Persuasion API?
Three big launching customers + business case = meeting with American investors.
What’s the long-term dream for the company?
Open up profiling data and becoming a clearinghouse for cookies.
What top three lessons do you have for startup companies, and how can they start being smarter about their online marketing today?
Lesson 1: Know influential people.
Lesson 2: Know a lot of easily influenced people.
Lesson 3: Make sure you know which people are which!
What’s the No. 1 reason people should come to your upcoming talk in Edinburgh?
Because you are going to learn something without being bored to death.
Who would you like to meet when you’re in Scotland in August?
We would love to meet the Pirate Bay dude. He’s cool (and handsome). [Peter Sunde of the Pirate Bay and micropayments startup Flattr, is speaking at the Turing Festival on Saturday, 27th August at the Surgeons’ Hall.]
And there you have it. Arjan will be speaking about the Science of Persuasion on Sunday, 28th August, as part of the Festival’s segment entitled Science, Technology and Creativity: Open Innovation at the Bleeding Edge. Day tickets can be purchased through the Turing Festival.