Dearborn based entrepreneur Peder Blohm is counting on social media to launch the beta version of a new website that he expects will rival Craigslist to buy and sell almost anything.
On Wednesday June 23, 2010, the website will be officially unveiled at a gathering of the fast growing Social Media Club of Detroit, to be held at the newly renovated Baronette Renaissance Hotel in Novi, Michigan.
According to Blohm, the website offers easy navigation and a variety of options to buy and sell products and services, promote new businesses, post and search job openings, and support the local economy. The site will not include adult personal ads.
“Our goal is to be more transparent than other websites that promote ‘free advertising’ because, in reality, nothing’s free,” said Blohm. “Unlike Craiglist, we will charge a small fee for posting ads to help keep out the ‘riff raff’.”
In addition to promoting the website through social media, the company will not charge for ads during the first 30 days of launching the beta site in order to help build content.
“In today’s economy and with limited capital, you have to use all your creative resources to launch a new business,” added Blohm, who has previously launched new businesses in Michigan and in his Swedish birthplace of Stockholm. “We’re planning for success.”
Unlike other online classifieds, there’s another advantage for people who live in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and do not live in or near a major city. They also have easy access to place ads, search for items and promote local commerce.
Blohm’s partner in developing the new website is Brian Surowiec, owner of Essential IT and a Michigan entrepreneur and technology consultant who has more than 15 years of experience providing IT and Internet-related services for a variety of industries.
Keeping the name of the website under wraps until the official beta launch on June 23, both entrepreneurs anticipate that visitors will welcome a visually appealing, easy to navigate and customer focused site to connect credible sellers and buyers.
Because new businesses have limited marketing resources, the site will also offer a special place for companies that have been in operation less than 12 months the opportunity to promote themselves and attract new customers as well as employees and potential investors.
“We want to show that Michigan is still the birthplace of innovation,” said Blohm. “The Social Media Club of Detroit is helping us lead the way.”