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Who Is iContact?
The Marketing and The Mission
Ryan Allis is the CEO and co-founder of iContact. iContact allows organizations of all sizes to easily create, send, and track email newsletters, RSS feeds, surveys, and autoresponders. Market leaders like AT&T, Vonage, Symantec, International Paper, ReMax, Centex Homes, Viacom, and even TrueNYC to email newsletters just like this one. At age 18 he founded iContact and grew it to its current size with more than 105 employees, 27,000 customers, and 1,500 channel partners.
Today he is an expert in business startup, human resources, and marketing on a very small budget.
In his early days in business, Ryan learned that it was smarter to find a market and build a product for it, rather than building a product and then searching for a market. He chose his market, small business owners, because he was within that market and understood it. Then it was no problem creating email marketing software for people just like him.
iContact is still a growing company. As a manager, Ryan is still learning that role. Initially he felt that his age, 18 or 19, hindered him from being a proper leader. Now he understands the role and is even able to build an office culture in which having fun and working hard go hand in hand.
Still, Ryan remembers that marketing as a startup was certainly a challenge. Working with a very small budget, he focused on low cost or free online channels such as organic search optimization. He also did local campaigning in which he offered his services free for one month to different business. These free trials built business and revenue, which he then was able to invest immediately back into the product.
Ryan may seem like he has one track business mind, but there is more. His overall mission is to improve society in The Unites States and across the world so that everyone has the opportunity to create and be an entrepreneur.