Socially Yours, MySocialCloud Dreams Of An Internet Experience That Feels Like Cloud 9
Sounds like heaven. MySocialCloud is a startup striving to be the one location where Internet users can manage all of their online passwords and usernames. Accomplishing this would be an enormous feat by itself, but the lofty ambitions of the young team behind the startup don’t end with consolidating login-capability. They see MySocialCloud as the place to store and share all of your favorite web content. In short, they aim to restructure the entire Internet experience.
Yeah right, you say? Organize my online life? Ha! MySocialCloud is hardly the first startup promising to simplify life on the Web, but so far they’ve given us reason to believe that their product has more to offer than pie in the sky fantasy. They’ve just rolled out a new design this week and opened it to the public. KillerStartups managed to connect with exuberant Co-founder, Stacey Ferreira (sister of CEO, Scott Ferreira). Read on to learn more about their unstoppable energy and their fairy-tale startup story that includes knights and million dollar investments.
How long have you been involved with the Internet? What were your first steps?
I remember running into my brother’s room when I was in the 4th grade. He had just gotten a new computer and we loved to spend time clicking on our Netscape browser and typing in random URLs to see what websites would pop up. At that point we were just kids, but I think we had this underlying fascination with the fact that if we typed any word in between www. and .com, a website or an error would appear in front of us.
From those days forward, I was always intrigued with the Internet, but it wasn’t until high school that I really started to understand that there were languages behind all those URLs that made new websites possible.
What time do you usually start work each day?
On a typical day, I don’t start work until 8am, but then again, I typically don’t stop working until about 3 or 4am!
Do you have an office or work at home?
Inevitably, I work at both. The first thing I do when I wake up is check my emails. So, I probably do about an hour of work before I go into the MySocialCloud office. Then when I leave the office for the day, I take a break to eat dinner (if I haven’t already eaten it in the office) and go to the gym–and then I finish the day with some more work (or just brainstorming) before sleep.
What’s the first thing you do when you leave the office at the end of the day?
Go to the gym! It’s great to get some exercise and clear your mind after thinking about the same product for the whole day! It prevents burnout and ultimately gives me more drive and determination (probably mostly because of the music I listen to at the gym coupled with my adrenaline from running!)
When do your best ideas come to you? In bed in the morning? During dinner? After working for 16 hours? On your third beer?
Mostly in the shower or in the middle of the night. Sometimes I’ll keep muttering an idea to myself in the shower over and over so that I don’t forget until I have the chance to write it down or wake up in the middle of the night and rush to my desk to jot down notes.
We want to know about where you spend your day! What’s on your desk right now?
Paper… lots of paper with all of my ideas, to-do lists, notes, etc. An iPad, my laptop, my cell phone–all the technology needed to effectively do my job. My Facebook “like” and “dislike” stamps, so that whenever I get frustrated I just stamp things I like and dislike around me. It instantly makes me feel silly so I feel better! Gnomes also have some property on my desk to remind me of my best friends (we have a little inside joke with gnomes). And I have these really awesome erasers that are shaped like food that I play with from time to time! They come apart and you can create different eraser desserts!
What’s your office environment like? Is it the kind of place where everyone is bumping away to house music or is it more traditional?
It depends on the day. Some days we have music playing all day in the office (we take turns picking what we listen to)–and some days we transplant the whole office and sit under our tents on the roof of the office to change up the scenery!
Favorite movie? Band? Vacation Spot?
My favorite movie is Beverly Hills Ninja–by far. No words can describe. One of my favorite bands is and always will be Quietdrive. I fell in love with them right at that age where they’ll always stick with me as one of my favorite bands. I get on streaks where they’re all I can listen to for weeks at a time. I don’t really have a favorite vacation spot–as long as I’m with my friends, it’s guaranteed to be a great vacation!
A lot of people have big ideas. What gave you the confidence to actually put your life on hold and realize yours?
I think I always had a gut feeling that what I was trying to achieve with my brother and MySocialCloud would be really awesome and change the way people interact with the Internet in some way. But if you asked why I decided to move to California a couple days after I graduated high school without looking back, I wouldn’t be able to give you a definitive answer beyond that gut feeling. Miraculously, that feeling was enough to make me just go for it.
But it wasn’t until Sir Richard Branson and Jerry Murdock actually took an interest and invested in MySocialCloud that I decided to put traditional life on hold and sign my papers to take a leave from NYU. I’m the type of person that is all for taking risks, but they need to be calculated risks in order for my mind to justify them.
How did you meet Sir Richard Branson and secure almost a $1million in investment at only 18 years old from both him, Jerry Murdock and Alex Welch?
Long story short, Richard Branson sent out a Tweet to come meet him in Miami for the 25th Anniversary of Virgin Atlantic. I responded to the Tweet and spent two days in Miami at two parties that Sir Richard Branson hosted. We were able to talk over the course of the two days and stayed connected after that weekend. After updating him on the progress over the course of a couple weeks, he introduced us to Jerry Murdock who decided he would invest in us himself along with Sir Richard Branson! They invested just under $1 mil together in August of 2011. A few months later, Jerry introduced us to Alex Welch (of Photobucket) who also decided to invest and act as a mentor for us.
As far as investing, your passion for your idea and the team you choose to build a company with can go a long way! Scott, Shiv [CTO, Shiv Prakash] and I had an extreme passion for MySocialCloud over the past year and we’ve enveloped ourselves in it completely. I think this determination, passion and drive, without a doubt contributed to Sir Richard Branson, Jerry Murdock and later Alex Welch’s investment in MySocialCloud.
What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs struggling to get their business off the ground?
Talk to people. Don’t be afraid to share your ideas and get feedback from people on how to develop the idea or product better. In the beginning, I feel like lots of entrepreneurs want to be secretive about their product because they’re afraid someone will steal their idea. Believe it or not, most people that you talk to are actually good people and will NOT steal your idea. Pretty much everyone that I’ve met in the startup community is really here to help each other, so just ask if you’re having trouble with something or just need some motivation!
Who has been your biggest cheerleader throughout this process?
All the people who use MySocialCloud regularly! I can’t tell you how many emails I get from people who are just generally excited to use MySocialCloud and love the new features we roll out. And it’s always these emails that help keep us going and make everyone at the office want to push that much harder to build something our users love!
Often times, I wish I learned to code at a younger age. That’s about it.
How do you picture your company in 5 years?
I picture MySocialCloud being the central hub for online information.
Where can our readers get a hold of you? Facebook? Twitter? Google+? Personal blog?
Google+ : Stacey@mysocialcloud.com
Personal Blog: staceyferreira.me