PEOPLE

NOV 17, 2009

Member Interview - Michael Tchong

  |   By Privy Editor

Occupation: Trend Analyst, Public Speaker, Entrepreneur

Based in: San Francisco

Fordham University, Bronx, NY

With the landscape of modern media and technology changing at such a rapid pace, there are few that can claim to always be on the cutting edge. Michael Tchong - trend analyst, sought-after public speaker, and serial entrepreneur - has been for years, exhibiting an uncanny skill for tracking, analyzing, and articulating trends and doing so with style. He has also founded multiple companies, including MacWEEK, Atelier Systems (personal communications), CyberAtlas (Internet market research), ICONOCAST (online marketing), and Ubercool. In this interview with Privy, Michael applies his keen eye for trends to everything from social media to the modernization of Asian cultures to the restaurant scene in his hometown of San Francisco, CA

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1.   What do you like about Privy or the promise Privy offers?
 

I believe that creating global bonds in an increasingly interconnected world is an important aspect of the new social dialogue. We now have a number of social networks that provide connection services, but nothing beats one that's specifically targeted at the fast-growing Asian market.

 

2.   Tell us a bit about Ubercool. What's the concept behind it? How did it start and where do you see it heading?
 

I founded Ubercool in 2005 with an eye towards leveraging trends in creative ways. I have solutions for both the business-to-business market and consumers that integrate key concepts of branded entertainment with social media into one trendsetting start-up. My aim is to lift the spirits of the world, and by doing so, start a trend that sparks further innovation. And unlike most of my technology-infused peers, Ubercool does not rely on online advertising to generate revenues; that's an oversold market.

 

3.   You are a sought-after speaker and trend analyst who has founded five successful companies prior to Ubercool. What is your secret for success?
 

I treat my audience the way I want to be treated. I have attended too many conferences where speakers go on endlessly about topics that do not engage their audience. My approach is "infotainment" - provide a lot of information with a big dash of entertainment, which not only amuses but inspires as well. And that high-quality, social engagement strategy fueled all my previous start-ups, four of which were funded and sold. You must think of your customer first. And if that customer is sending e-mail in the back of the conference room, you have not served him or her well.

 

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