Inside the Mind of a Successful Startup CEO

Building a company, nevertheless two successful start-ups, is a huge feat. It takes a specific kind of individual, a certain personality. While big company CEOs are usually groomed for the job for years, startup CEOs aren’t, making the job significantly different – and, some would say, tougher. Have you ever wondered what makes such people tick – what they think about – how they relax? I know I have. Recently, I took the time to sit down with FOCUUS’ CEO, Yotam Benattia to ask him these particular questions and more. Benattia is a two-time start-up success story, with his most recent endeavor being FOCUUS, the Performance Marketing & Analytics Platform.

What gets you out of bed in the morning?

In general, I think that everyone should ask themselves this question. It’s one of the most important questions out there. For me personally, I think it is the passion to do things in a better way. In general, since I was a young boy, I wouldn’t accept any reality as a given. I was always trying to change the world around, even the most simple things. When I see something that isn’t working correctly or can be improved, I get excited – my mind is working nonstop. This continues to make me tick – even till today. I first stepped foot into the world of marketing more than 10 years; ever since then, my bones have been burning – I want to improve this world. This is when I introduced FOCUUS.

Interesting. So, what did you want to change in the world of advertising and why did you want to develop FOCUUS?

FOCUUS is built up from another company – an ad agency called Takoomi, my first endeavor. And, this is when we first felt the urge to make a change to the way data was used, managed and analyzed – and, we decided instead of just doing it for ourselves, let’s launch a product that can help everyone and anyone in the industry.

From my experience, in dealing with the world of marketing, and advertising, – everything eventually comes down to data. Tons of data. The majority of players in this field are dealing with it. But, the way they deal with such chaotic amounts of data can be better, should be better. Many use a lot of manpower – for example, teams of account managers and data scientists. While it is certainly obvious that a computer and algorithm can do it a lot better – in a fraction of the time – I think that many time people are scared of this change. But, to get ahead, to constantly improve – to be more effective, tools need to be utilized that make a team’s performance better – and in a quarter of the time. This is why FOCUUS is so important – it helps people be better at their jobs in these industries of ours. 

You’ve mentioned FOCUUS several times. Please explain to your mother what you do – so we can all understand.

It’s simple. FOCUUS takes the dirty work away from those who are managing and analyzing campaigns. Campaigns loaded with intense amounts of data. An algorithm crunches every scenario possible and gives the user actionable insights, including what is working and what is not for the campaigns.

What’s the biggest mistake that you’ve made so far?

Sometimes you need to keep going, even though a product is not complete and things are not as crunched as you wanted them to be. In the past, I couldn’t grasp the notion of imperfection; luckily, I learn from my mistakes and today – I always keep pushing forward. Never stop. Stopping doing something you believe in is a mistake – even if it’s not always perfect.

What does success look like for you and the company?

In my eyes, it is when companies begin to approach FOCUUS and tell us how much it changed the way they work – obviously, for the better. That is the most satisfying thing for me to hear. When I hear that – I hear success.

Now, at the end of the day, you go home. You’ve experienced success – now, what do you do for fun?  How do you relax?

You always need to find the time to relax and be with your family and friends . Rock climbing and basketball are two activities I love; I wish I had more time to go out and practice – just be in the nature and in the zone. I should follow my own advice from time-to-time. *Laughs to himself.*

Last question – What is the one piece of advice that you would give to entrepreneurs and startups that are just beginning?

*Silence*

Try not to give into the noise. Don’t always listen. Always question things that people are telling you; often, comments, intentional or not, might keep you away from your goals and passion. For example, advice from knowledgeable individuals might sound like a great idea, but be cautious because the pieces to the puzzle might not always be the right fit for you.
And, on the other side of that coin – always look for more information – be thirsty for more knowledge, reach out and try to speak and make connections with individuals that have made a mark in your industry. Learn from other’s mistakes and try to successfully implement the corrections. That’s more than one but you get the point.

About FOCUUS:

Launched in 2016, FOCUUS is a fast-growing company in the Performance Marketing & Analytics sphere.
Elevated by the innovative and robust platform, FOCUUS equips each user with the essential toolbox to tackle the complex data chaos and focus only on the critical analysis that matters to them and their companies – no matter the magnitude.
FOCUUS’ solutions all provide an intuitive user interface that creates – with ease –  clear, automated marketing insights.
What sets FOCUUS apart is the ability to lead any user to success. It’s really that easy. FOCUUS conclusively executes the idea: be productive, not busy.
With its Headquarters in Tel Aviv, FOCUUS operates an additional office in the “Big Apple” – NYC.

Written by: Matt Hunt

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