Monday, February 2, 2009

Experts in the Industry: Sam Decker (6 of 45)

Sam Decker, CMO of fellow Austin Venture backed company, Bazaar Voice, is one of the few poeple on my list of "influencers" that I don't actually don't know that well which is amusing to me given our similarities (job title, physical location, social-focused company and venture backer). However, my admiration from a far and my gut intituition that tells me I will get to know Sam better over time prompted me to include him in the collection of, Experts in the Industry: 45 Interviews in 45 Days.

Here's what Sam had to say about the five questions I asked him:

In one sentence, please describe what you do and why you’re good at it.
We turn customer created content into measaurable business results for Global 2000, which we’re great at because we hire great people!

How did you get into the world of online community, social media or social marketing?
First company I worked for in early ‘90s, we helped companies drive word of mouth through computer user groups, from which I wrote a book on User Group (WOM) marketing. Because User Group members were bleeding edge, I got into online chat, web sites, discussion boards, and chats very early. Ran community at in ’97, started blogging in 2003, etc.

If you had $10 million to invest in one company and one company only based on their use of “social,” which company would it be and why?
Facebook. Simply because they’ve crossed the chasm…more than half of all internet users have a Facebook account. But I wouldn’t invest until they figured out how to make more revenue like Google.

Which business leader, politician or public figure do you most respect?
Abraham Lincoln and Alexander Hamilton (for his accomplishment, not his ego or morals). You didn’t say they had to be alive. 

No. Not enough passion or utility. I need one or the other to join a community.

Freeform – here’s where you can riff on anyone or anything – good or bad. Or just share a pearl of wisdom.
All my pearls are at,, or I’ll retweet yours on Twitter (@samdecker)!

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