Executive Briefings

Lessons Learned from an Unsuccessful Retail Venture

Advice From a Sticky Web Site on How to Make Yours the Same

If you search the Internet for the word "blackberry," the first result you are likely to find is the smartphone, not the fruit.

Similarly, the top result in a recent search for orange soda was not a soft drink, but OrangeSoda, a company based in American Fork, Utah, that creates online marketing campaigns for small- and medium-size businesses. OrangeSoda, which was founded in 2006 by Jay Bean, has 175 employees and 6,000 customers. Mr. Bean said that the company's revenue was $19 million in 2010, and that he expected it to reach $32 million this year. But not all of his ventures have been successful. In 2005, he started a retail business that failed, but that helped him better understand the marketing needs of his small-business clients.

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If you search the Internet for the word "blackberry," the first result you are likely to find is the smartphone, not the fruit.

Similarly, the top result in a recent search for orange soda was not a soft drink, but OrangeSoda, a company based in American Fork, Utah, that creates online marketing campaigns for small- and medium-size businesses. OrangeSoda, which was founded in 2006 by Jay Bean, has 175 employees and 6,000 customers. Mr. Bean said that the company's revenue was $19 million in 2010, and that he expected it to reach $32 million this year. But not all of his ventures have been successful. In 2005, he started a retail business that failed, but that helped him better understand the marketing needs of his small-business clients.

READ MORE