Imagine launching a new business that coincides with you being chosen as one of Donald Trump’s Apprentice candidates?
That is what happened to northwest resident James Sun – last Sunday he became the runner-up to the Apprentice selected on Apprentice L.A., and he launched is social networking site, Zoodango, which offers a new way for people to connect to each other.
Sun, 30, immigrated to the
James Sun is pioneering a new way of social connection with his
At the same time, web-based social networking has been developing over the past five or so years. Sites like Linked In are good – but they are virtual connections. What if I want to make good use of my time to see who is online in my area, and THEN invite them to a meeting? That is part of the concept of Zoodango.
In an interview with Northwest Innovation, Sun said,
“We’re really hitting the market where people want to network locally, not only online, but offline. We have nine thousand Starbucks locations integrated into our site, so you can do what’s called a ZooVite, which is simply finding what someone else’s most frequently visited Starbucks is, to set up a meeting there and increase the chances for a meeting.”
I set up my own profile and found it to be very easy. You can even select where you want to meet a potential connection. For now you’re limited to your favorite Starbucks (ok, not really LIMITED as there are 9000). I found this part tricky in scrolling down to my particular favorite Starbucks – one located in
Zoodango now accepts video, which is a wonderful feature to get to know someone or an organization better. Since I’m working on some video now, I will most likely add that in, and I encourage others to try this platform. New innovation is how we can refine what we’re doing and leverage our time and energy to get to know those who can impact not just our businesses, but our lives.
James Sun is definitely one to make an impact. On Apprentice, he got as far as he could without having to work for “The Donald” – which in my personal opinion is a real win. He received very favorable TV exposure week after week, and still gets to control his destiny with his own business (unless another company has seen his potential and convinced him to join them)
When I met James last year, he was very gracious and mentioned what amazing things were happening in his life. This was before he was a public figure from Apprentice, but had finished shooting all episodes except the finale. I didn’t even ask him how well he did, because I knew he couldn’t say – and so I was surprised at how, week after week, he not only stayed in the game, but made good decisions and worked hard with integrity. It was great to see him go all the way to the end, and nearly becoming The Donald’s new employee.
On connecting to others, Sun says this:
“I used to go to these events, association and professional events–and there would be 3, 4 or 5 people at the event there who could help me and I could really help too, but I’d always leave those meetings not meeting those people, not having the right business contacts. I realized it was due to a lack of information, not having that information beforehand to set up meetings ahead of time. So now, it only makes sense for me to prearrange a meeting. So it was really out of a personal frustration that I came up with the concept.”
Check it out at Zoodango – another great new innovative way for people to network and make meaningful connections.