Customer happiness and knowing where the market is headed in terms of development is key to a successful brand.
Jay Chow worked at Fujifilm for 11 years before quitting and focusing on improving his professional techniques. During this time he also joined together with a few of his friends to work on filming and photography, which has always been a passion of his, together with some of his close friends. His friends and him are all the creative types and decided to start a company together which eventually became Snoppa. They have a passion for problem solving and creating tools that help make life that much easier for everyone. They hope to stay unique in the market as they never cared for the emulation of others that is so common in Chinese companies.
Where did the idea for Snoppa come from?
Snoppa was started through a common passion for videography. Most of our team came together through the drone community. We love the freedom drones give us in taking video and the professional look they bring to our footage. We wanted to share our passion for videography and allow anyone to achieve that quality of professionalism we generally only see in movies and on TV. We felt the best way to bring our experience from drones was through the stabilizer and getting that into the hands of everyone. You can use a stabilizer virtually anywhere, but a drone is kind of limited in where and how it can be used.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Recently my days are filled with lots of meetings and product development. We use a productivity site called Worktile, very similar to Trello.
How do you bring ideas to life?
In the sense of a product, we spend a lot of time thinking about the real-world applications and the practicality of the idea.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
The trend of really being able to shoot stable videos or photos with handheld smartphones.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Keeping really good notes. So many things go on each and everyday that it is necessary for me to write absolutely everything down. I can always go back and review it, but if I depend on memory alone so many things will become lost to the void and I won’t even know that I forgot it.
What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?
None of my jobs I would really consider the worst, but any job or project I wasn’t really happy with just taught me what I want more. Its hard to really know what you want but by experiencing the opposite you can get closer to what you actually want.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
If I were to start all over again, I would not be as trusting. When we ran our Indiegogo campaign for the M1, we had a hiccup with project funds. We were still able to complete the project, but it definitely made everything a lot more difficult. Planning better and understanding how crowdfunding campaigns work is very critical in any start-up company or business in general.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Really know your customer well and listen to what they want in terms of product development and build your product accordingly. Customer happiness and knowing where the market is headed in terms of development is key to a successful brand.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Sharing our passion. In China we have classes and seminars teaching video techniques to budding videographers. By creating more interest in our industry and showing people the joys of taking video, we can really show them the difference products like ours makes when taking video.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
My biggest failure or regret is being too trusting. As I stated above it caused a lot of problems for our whole company for our M1 Indiegogo campaign.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
We are so busy right now focusing on launching the Kylin M that I really have not thought about additional business ideas at the moment because we are still in product development of the Kylin M which is very innovative.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
Buying Legos for my son. Maybe its kind of lame, but spending time with family is still important. I like playing with my son anyways, but playing with Legos is an extra perk!
What software and web services do you use? What do you love about them?
I use a lot of Premier Pro, but I’ve recently started using my phone more for editing video. I use an app called Vue and I love it. It lets me cut short 10 second clips of any footage I’ve recently captured, and share it easily anywhere with anyone. Its great since if I get some kind of inspiration while out I can still cut and edit video no matter where I am
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
It has been a long time since I have time to really sit down and read a good book, but I would recommend any book on philosophy. There really isn’t a right or wrong answer with philosophy, but more and more it is becoming an important and missing aspect of many lives and societies around the world. I think philosophy can really help expand peoples world views and help you make sense of what you live day to day.
Snoppa on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Snoppatech/
Snoppa on Twitter : https://twitter.com/Snoppago
Snoppa on Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/snoppa_tech/
Snoppa on Indiegogo : https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/kylin-m-3-axis-stabilizer-for-lightweight-cameras#/
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.