Greetings, beautiful people.
Seven months ago, we released Hitlist to the public. 50,000 people like you have downloaded the application, and we’ve sent close to a hundred thousand hyper targeted flight alerts. Our goal has been to inspire and enable people to take trips they wouldn’t have otherwise, and we think we’re getting there: as of July 1st, hundreds of flights have been bought off of referrals from us – trips we’d argue wouldn’t have happened without our urging.
A few months ago we began to work on a substantially different v2, reworking our feature set and user interface based on the behavior we’ve observed in our v1. We’re pleased to announce that we’re finally feature complete and in user testing, and shipping to the App Store today (the Android version will go live by August 1st).
FOCUS FOR THE NEXT MONTH: GROWTH
We usually try and limit our ‘asks’ to two, but this month is a big one. Can you help with any of the following?
APPLE: We’d love to see about getting featured by the App Store. Anyone know anyone who has arranged this successfully for his or her own app, or know someone at Apple directly?
PRESS: we’d love to get some juicy coverage of our v2. Anyone know journalists / PR outlets that might be looking for some content? We’ve got a few things prepared that we hope would make for very easy pitches.
TESTING: If you’d like to join our beta testing group, please fill out this form.
– Last month’s focus was business development. We’ve moved down the sales cycle with a number of interesting partners and hope to have some announcements to make soon. (For now I’ll say this – going down to meet Richard Branson on Necker Island wasn’t the worst).
– We’re very pleased that Jen Hung, former Visual Editor for Digital Content at the NY Times (responsible for launching the NY Times Style Magazine, among other things), and former Creative Director at the Discovery Channel, is joining the Hitlist team part time. She’s kind of a baller: in addition to winning more awards than we can count for design, creative direction, and marketing, she likes to hike under-explored glaciers and backpack through Argentina. This reminds me of the time I considered going to Alaska but then chickened out because it would be too cold. Jen Hung is not deterred by cold, or anything.
– Hitlist was selected as part of the inaugural class at Grand Central Tech, a rent free/equity free accelerator space next to Grand Central Station in Manhattan. We’ll be in this space for a year, so please come and visit if you find yourself in the area.
WHY ARE WE DOING THIS?
We’re all travel addicts, so it’s always been a bit of a mystery to us why everyone else in the world doesn’t want to sell all their furniture and live out of a backpack for a year. What makes the difference between a trip taken and a trip deferred? What makes someone spend a thousand dollars on a TV or Candy Crush saga rather than a journey? Through the process of building Hitlist, we’ve had an opportunity to do a deep dive into why people want to go where they want to go when – all with the intent, of course, to get people hooked on our drug of choice. (Wrong metaphor? We already named the company Hitlist…)